Two Mississippi natives have advanced to the next round of The Voice this season, one of which is former Miss Mississippi Holly Brand.
The 22-year-old Meridian native wowed judges during her blind audition, with three of four judges turning their chairs during her performance of Faith Hill’s “Mississippi Girl.”
Brand explained during an interview on Good Things with Rebecca Turner that she chose the song as a tribute to her family, friends, and other supporters throughout the Magnolia State.
“For me, it was kind of a tip of the hat to everybody back home in Mississippi,” Brand said. “I remember you guys, I’m never going to forget about you, and I know that I’m here because of people back home here in Mississippi.”
Brand added that both of the competitions made her nervous, but she always feels at ease when she is singing her favorite songs on stage.
“It depends on what day you ask me,” Brand stated. “Sometimes I say The Voice, sometimes I say Miss America. I think my final decision on this is that they are both equally nerve-racking, but in different ways.”
Although country music singer Blake Shelton did not turn his chair around for Brand, she shared with him that she felt called to pursue music after opening for one of Shelton’s shows.
“That was really the moment that I realized I wanted to be an artist,” Brand explained. “That was the moment that I realized, ‘Okay, this isn’t just a hobby for me. This isn’t just something I love to do. This is something I want to do for the rest of my life. This is how I want to make my living, I just want to sing.'”
Now, Brand is preparing for the Battle Round portion of the competition, which is set to begin on March 27.