Artist Update: Pip

The Voice - Season 2

Pip was one of my favorite artists from season two of The Voice, and he’s been one of my good friends ever since. So I’m excited to report that he has a lot of interesting stuff going on – he’s signed a distribution deal with a company that’s tied to Universal Music Group (the record label behind the show, remember) and just came off a few shows on The Voice Tour. Click on over to Examiner for the latest from Pip!

Click here to read my interview with Pip at Examiner.

(c)2014 Brittany Frederick. All rights reserved. No reproduction permitted. Visit my official website and follow me on Twitter at @tvbrittanyf.

News Roundup: June 2, 2014

The Voice

It’s only been about two weeks since Josh Kaufman was named champ of The Voice Season 6, but the show’s coaches and alumni are already making offseason moves. We’ve compiled the notable happenings for you below in this first June edition of our The Voice news roundup.

Adam Levine’s Feature Film Debut Is Almost Here

We’re just a few weeks away from seeing coach Adam Levine make his acting debut. Begin Again, in which Adam plays musician Dave Kohl, has its limited release Friday, June 27 and then expands everywhere on July 11.

The cast also includes Keira Knightley as Dave’s jilted girlfriend, Mark Ruffalo (The Avengers) as a music producer, and coach Cee Lo Green as…well, he seems pretty much like a fictionalized version of Cee Lo Green.

You can check out the new trailer for Begin Again below. It includes Adam singing a new track, “Lost Stars,” which we assume will be included on the movie soundtrack that Adam’s own 222 Records is releasing at the beginning of July. You can pre-order your copy now.

Jake Barker Has A New EP

Fresh off being spontaneously added to The Voice Tour, Season 6 alumni Jake Barker – pictured at the top of this article, and probably best known for taking on Maroon 5’s “She Will Be Loved” before being eliminated in the first round of playoffs – has released a new EP. You can download the four-song Stage Fright on iTunes now.

James Wolpert’s Kickstarter Comes To An End

Team Adam’s James Wolpert was one step shy of making it to the Season 5 finals; he’s been working hard to parlay his exposure into the funds needed to release new music. James’s Kickstarter is almost over, but you still have time to donate and help him reach his goal.

As of Sunday night, when we went to press, James was less than $3,000 shy of his $25,000 target. His campaign ends tomorrow, June 3, just before 9 PM PST. To get more information or to donate, go directly to his Kickstarter page (kickstarter.com/projects/584074878/james-wolpert-makes-a-record).

Casey Weston’s Recent Music Video

Season 1 semifinalist Casey Weston recently dropped a new music video, “Back To The Start.” Take a look at it below.

New Tour Dates For Tony Lucca

One of the busiest alumni is Season 2 finalist Tony Lucca, who’s almost always on the road somewhere. This summer, he’s touring with both Tyler Hilton and Tonic’s Emerson Hart.

Tony and Tyler take to the road beginning July 8 in Louisville, KY and they wrap up July 22 in Nashville, TN. Then in August, Tony jets over to the West Coast to join Emerson for a short stint that runs from August 2 in Phoenix, AZ to August 9 in Seattle, WA. For all the tour dates and locations, hit up his website (tonylucca.com).

If you’re on either coast, these are great opportunities to check Tony out live – we’ve been to several of his shows, and he never, ever disappoints.

Blake Shelton Has A Pizza

You’ve probably seen the billion commercials for this, but it’s just too amusing not to mention. Blake Shelton has teamed up with Pizza Hut, and they’ve given him his own “Blake’s Smokehouse BBQ” pizza – which consists of bacon, ham, and pork covered with honey barbeque sauce. We think it should’ve come with a special latte.

The Voice season 7 will begin airing on NBC this fall; The Voice Tour launches in San Antonio, Texas later this month. For more updates on artists after the show, visit our sister site Big Red Chairs (bigredchairs.com) and follow it on Twitter (@bigredchairs).

(c)2014 Brittany Frederick. Appears at Starpulse and Examiner with permission. All rights reserved. No reproduction permitted. Visit my official website and follow me on Twitter at @tvbrittanyf.

News Roundup: May 14, 2014

The Voice

Just in time to promote their new singles – and the recently announced The Voice tour – the three finalists from Season 5 of the hit NBC show came back to its stage this week. BFTV caught up with Jacquie Lee and Will Champlin on Monday, and we’ve included the video of their performances as well as that of Season 5 winner Tessanne Chin in case you missed them. The songs are available on iTunes as well.

Jacquie spoke with us about being reunited with Tessanne and Will for the tour, which begins next month in San Antonio, Texas. “I’ve seen Tess and Will since [the end of Season 5],” she said, “and then I met Dia for the first time the other day…Dia is amazing. We’re both nerds. We get along really well and we’re going to have so much fun on tour. She’s already like a big sister kind of figure.”

About her new single, “It’s my first song that I’m ever releasing,” she told us. “We’ve been working hard on it…I worked my butt off after The Voice, and I’m coming back as a new artist, away from the show as my own person, so it’s a really cool feeling…I’m really honored to be singing it on The Voice stage where it all started.”

What’s been the coolest thing that’s happened to Jacquie since The Voice? “Ed [Sheeran]. Ed followed me on Twitter,” she laughed, but then teased, “I have some exciting news – just keep an ear open. You should just be hearing a lot from me really soon.”

Here’s Jacquie performing “Broken Ones,” which amusingly is just one word off the title of Dia Frampton’s first post-show single, that was called “The Broken Ones.”

Will Champlin was the third-place finisher in Season 5, and we asked him if there’s any one Season 6 artist that he would like to see take home the title – and therefore a guaranteed place alongside him on tour. “I don’t know. It’s hard to say and hard to speculate at this point,” he said. “It’s anybody’s game. I think they’re all talented and I know what it’s like to be in their position.”

Has his career after The Voice gotten the boost he hoped it would? “Yeah,” he told us. “I just know that it set me into a state of priority to work on the music that’s going to work for me as an artist. I’ve been just putting my nose to the grinder in the studio and trying to get this album done before the tour comes out and just try to drive it home.”

Will released his first single “Last Man Standing” a few months ago, and “Eye of the Pyramid” is setting a benchmark for him, too. “it’s going to radio without a label,” he told us, “which is another very cool thing.” That’s extremely cool, although we hope somebody wises up and signs this tremendously talented artist soon.

Here’s Will performing “Eye of the Pyramid.”

Tessanne was unavailable to join us for an interview, but here’s her performance of “Everything Reminds Me Of You.” According to her comments on Tuesday night, her post-Voice album will be available in June.

Thanks to the results of Tuesday night’s semifinal eliminations show, we now know that The Voice Tour will include Tessanne, Jacquie, Will, Season 1’s Dia Frampton, and Season 6’s Christina Grimmie, Josh Kaufman and Jake Worthington.

The seventh and final spot will go to one artist also from Season 6 – either Audra McLaughlin (Team Blake), Delvin Choice (Team Adam), Kat Perkins (Team Adam), Kristin Merlin (Team Shakira) or Sisaundra Lewis (Team Blake) – who receives the most Twitter votes. You can vote at the tour website (nbcthevoicetour.com/pick). Tickets for the tour are on sale now through Ticketmaster, so don’t wait!

In other news that you didn’t see televised on Tuesday, Team Adam has been busy. Fresh off his successful Kickstarter, Season 2’s Tony Lucca will be playing select West Coast tour dates this fall with Tonic’s Emerson Hart, including Hotel Cafe in Los Angeles; you can find more information at his website (tonylucca.com).

Season 1’s Casey Weston also released a new music video, “Back To The Start,” which we’ve included below for you to watch.

And if you’ve missed any of our recent The Voice alumni interviews, we’ve included some links to the last couple of them here: Nicole Nelson (Season 3), Nicholas David (Season 3), Caroline Glaser (Season 4), Kat Robichaud (Season 5).

The Voice finishes Season 6 this week and Season 7 will begin this fall.

(c)2014 Brittany Frederick. Appears at Starpulse and Examiner with permission. All rights reserved. No reproduction permitted. Visit my official website and follow me on Twitter at @tvbrittanyf.

Tony Lucca Launches Kickstarter For New Album

LuccaKickstarter

One of the most talented musicians we’ve ever seen (who also happens to be one of the best people we’ve ever known, too) has launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund his new full-length studio album. Tony Lucca, who you probably know from being Team Adam’s finalist on Season 2 of The Voice, went live with his Kickstarter Wednesday morning.

If it succeeds, he’ll be the latest in a line of Voice alumni that have funded albums through the platform, including fellow Season 2 Team Adam members Pip and Katrina Parker.

Having been writing and recording pretty steadily since he left the reality TV world, Tony has put out two strong EPs over the last two years. His first, With The Whole World Watching, was under a deal with Voice coach Adam Levine’s 222 Records label and contained the single “Never Gonna Let You Go,” which he performed on the show last year. That partnership has amicably ended, and so Tony’s returning to his independent roots to release what will be his eighth studio album.

He also just released the acoustic EP Drawing Board on March 18, and – maintaining his status as one of the hardest-working men in music – is currently playing yet another tour, this one with Tyler Hilton. He previously embarked upon the ‘Keys, Strings and Band of Kings Tour’ with Brendan James and appearances by Season 1 Voice finalist Vicci Martinez, and he’s played plenty of solo shows across the country, too.

Tony never stops working hard to bring his fans the best music and live shows that he possibly can, so it’s kind of fitting that we now have the opportunity to give something back to him.

You can pledge to the Kickstarter effort by visiting bit.ly/LuccaKS. For more on Tony Lucca, check out his official website (tonylucca.com) and follow him on Twitter (@luccadoes).

(c)2014 Brittany Frederick. Appears at Starpulse and Examiner with permission. All rights reserved. No reproduction permitted. Visit my official website and follow me on Twitter at @tvbrittanyf.

Tony Lucca Returns With ‘Drawing Board’ EP

Drawing Board EDIT

Less than a year after making a splash with his With The Whole World Watching EP, Tony Lucca is back with a new acoustic record, Drawing Board.

The five-song EP features the title track as well as the songs “All My Friends,” “Nashville,” “Los Angeles (In The Rear View)” and “My Love.” For those of you who somehow still haven’t heard him outside of Season 2 of The Voice, the album is typical Tony Lucca material: soulful, simple music that’s honest and without an ounce of pretention. Especially when listened to in conjunction with Whole World WatchingDrawing Board gives a sense of how much a true craftsman Lucca is. He puts together beautiful, meaningful music with just a guitar, hard work, and a whole lot of heart.

The record is reminiscent of Lucca’s Voice colleague and one-time tour partner Justin Hopkins’ 2012 acoustic release This Could Happen Anywhere, in that the decision to go acoustic allows the listener to even better appreciate the purity of Lucca’s vocals. Always perfectly understandable and heartfelt, he’s got one of the best voices in the music business.

Lucca is currently on the road playing select dates with Honor by August, and remains at work on a full-length album that will be his first release under his deal with Voice coach Adam Levine’s 222 Records. Last fall, he co-headlined the ‘Keys, Strings and Band of Kings’ tour with Brendan James, and also performed at halftime during the NFL’s Thanksgiving Day game in his native Detroit. We checked in with him during a West Coast tour stop in October; that interview can be found here.

You can download Drawing Board now on iTunes. For more on Tony Lucca, visit his website (tonylucca.com) and follow him on Twitter (@luccadoes).

(c)2014 Brittany Frederick. Appears at Starpulse and Examiner with permission. All rights reserved. No reproduction permitted. Visit my official website and follow me on Twitter at @tvbrittanyf.

Photo Credit: Courtesy of JLS

Season 6 Premieres Tonight: Your Catch-Up Guide

The Voice

Tonight begins Season 6 of NBC’s The Voice, but there have been plenty of happenings with past artists – and the coaches – since Season 5 wrapped in December. Before you tune in to the new cycle, read on to find out what you may have missed over the last three months.

The major news is that coach Cee Lo Green announced last week that he will not return for Season 7, marking his second departure from his big red chair. Cee Lo’s best finish on The Voice was having the runner-up (Juliet Simms, season 2) – which Usher has already matched (Michelle Chamuel, season 4). No word yet on who will replace him, whether it’s Usher or anyone else.

In happier coach-related news, Blake Shelton has announced he’ll hit the road for a 2014 version of his Ten Times Crazier Tour; information can be found on his website (blakeshelton.com). And Adam Levine and his Season 4 artist Judith Hill performed on the same stage when both participated in CBS’s February 9 special The Beatles: The Night That Changed America. You can hear some words from Adam and see a clip of Maroon 5’s performance in the below video.

A few The Voice artists have turned out new music since December. Season 1 finalist Vicci Martinez has a new release, Otra Cancion, available via Bandcamp. Season 4’s Melanie Martinez debuted her new single, “Dollhouse,” on iTunes. According to iTunes, Season 5 winner Tessanne Chin will release her record in March.

We’ve also caught up with several former contestants to find out what they’re up to recently. You can check out our interviews with Season 3 finalist Nicholas David, Team Cee Lo’s Kat Robichaud from Season 4, and Team Adam’s Caroline Glaser from Season 4. Kat’s recent music video, as well as a music video from Season 2’s Pip, can be found in our January news roundup.

The Voice also won the People’s Choice Award for Favorite Competition TV Show in January, over America’s Got Talent, Dancing With The Stars, MasterChef and the now-cancelled The X Factor.

Lastly, if you missed the various announcements over the last few weeks, we now know the full advisor lineup for Season 6. They are Aloe Blacc (Team Adam, after his appearance performing opposite Team Adam’s Will Champlin in Season 5), The Band Perry (Team Blake), Jill Scott (Team Usher) and Miranda Lambert (Team Shakira, her second go-around after advising Team Blake in Season 2). You’ll see the advisors in a few weeks, when Season 6 heads to its battle rounds.

The Voice premieres tonight at 8 PM ET/PT on NBC. Stay tuned all season for our recaps, interviews and news behind the scenes here and by visiting BFTV’s sister site, Big Red Chairs (bigredchairs.com).

(c)2014 Brittany Frederick. Appears at Starpulse and Examiner with permission. All rights reserved. No reproduction permitted. Visit my official website and follow me on Twitter at @tvbrittanyf.

News Roundup: January 9, 2014

The Voice - Season 5

We took a few weeks off after The Voice‘s Season 5 finale, but now the news is starting to roll in again, so that means it’s time for a fresh roundup. Here are the latest news and notes from around the Voice universe:

Our show took home the People’s Choice Award for Favorite Competition TV Show on Wednesday night, over network sibling America’s Got Talent, ABC’s Dancing With The Stars and FOX’s MasterChef and The X Factor.

There were also a few other nominations for our coaches: Adam Levine and Maroon 5 lost Favorite Band to One Direction, Taylor Swift beat out Blake Shelton for Favorite Country Artist, Justin Timberlake trumped him for Best Male Artist, and Blake’s Based On A True Story was edged for Best Album by Timberlake’s The 20/20 Experience.

Looking forward, with Season 6 just about two months away, the buzz has already begun. It’s now official that Miranda Lambert will be serving her second term as a Voice advisor, this time for Team Shakira. No word yet on who’ll be advising Teams Adam, Blake or Usher. The new cycle starts Monday, February 25.

If that seems like a quick turnaround to you, you’re right. After Season 3 ended on December 18, 2012, Season 4 didn’t start until March 25, 2013, and Cassadee Pope’s album arrived on October 8, 2013. In contrast, Tessanne Chin won Season 5 on December 17, 2013, and her post-show album is listed as arriving in March, a mere three months after her victory. We’re not sure what’s got NBC and Universal Music Group moving so quickly, but we’ll keep you posted with any and all future news about the new season and Tessanne’s upcoming record.

While you’re waiting for the new season to start, you can check out a pair of new music videos from some members of the Voice family. Season 2’s Pip has dropped the music video for his song “Hooked,” which you can check out below. He’s come a long way since he was on Team Adam years ago, but he’s still as adorable as ever.

And Season 5’s Kat Robichaud has also released a new video, which we’ve posted here, too. Clearly Kat is still just as badass as she ever was when she was on Team Cee Lo.

Congratulations to Pip and Kat on releasing their great new videos, and we’ll as always keep you posted on the latest from all of our former contestants.

For more on all things related to The Voice, be sure to check out BFTV’s sister site Big Red Chairs and follow us on Twitter (@bigredchairs).

(c)2013 Brittany Frederick. Appears at Starpulse and Examiner with permission. All rights reserved. No reproduction permitted. Visit my official website and follow me on Twitter at @tvbrittanyf.