Artist Interviews: Christian Porter, Jess Kellner, Vedo

The Voice - Season 4

Did you enjoy last week’s premiere of The Voice? After we watched them make the coaches’ chairs turn on Monday, BFTV spoke with several of the incoming artists from the blind auditions, so that you could get to know them a little better. Here are some words from Team Blake’s Christian Porter, Team Usher’s Jess Kellner, and Team Usher’s Vedo.

“The experience is absolutely amazing, very surprising, but I’m very grateful to be where I’m at,” said bar musician Christian, who can be found on Twitter at @porterchristian. “I never expected it to blow up on Twitter and Facebook and social media the way it has. But at the end of the day, I’m very excited.”

He turned heads – and chairs – with a very different arrangement of the hit “Sexy and I Know It,” and he wants Voice fans to know where the idea for that unique rendition came from. “The version was influenced by a YouTube star by the name of Noah Guthrie. And I didn’t necessarily steal it from him in any way, I took his version and I covered his version,” he explained. “I didn’t cover LMFAO’s ‘Sexy and I Know It,’ I covered Noah Guthrie’s version of ‘Sexy and I Know It.’ That’s where the whole concept of the song came from. But I really took it into my hands in a way, really worked with the band, and definitely made it my own.”

To commemorate his making it onto The Voice, Christian got together with his loved ones at the bar where he’s been performing. “We actually had a nice little viewing party,” he said. “All my family and friends and all my extended family at the bar, they all came out and supported me and we all watched it on the big screen.”

For Jess, whose version of ‘Can’t Help Falling In Love’ earned her a spot on Team Usher, “This experience has far exceeded anything I could have ever even thought up in my head! [It’s] so wonderful to have people support me and believe in my dream,” she said. “The last 24 hours have been nuts. Going from 94 twitter friends to over 2000 in a night was just insanity. It’s been wonderful to have people reach out to me and lift me up. And we had a little watch party at my house with some of my closest friends!”

In the video package during her blind audition, she discussed how she’s been balancing her musical aspirations with her hairstyling career, and Jess shed a little more light on just how hard she’s been working to make her dreams come true. “Before The Voice, I worked on average five days a week during the day as a hairdresser, and would have gigs at night throughout the week,” she explained. “It was super tiring to stay out till 3 and wake up [for] work at 7 consecutively!”

You can find Jess on Twitter (@JessicaKellner3), and she also wants to invite Voice fans to check out the website of her band, Jess and the Echoes ( “I have a single out on my website called ‘Time Traveler Song.’ It relates to my story on The Voice and paints a picture of the struggles I’ve been through,” she said. “It’s a very lovely song and it’s near and dear to my heart.”

What’s going to make Jess feel her time on The Voice has been a success? “I consider this whole experience a success in itself,” she continued. “Just making it to the top 48 out of 60,000 people is an enormous accomplishment. I’m proud [to get] this far and will continue to try and succeed even further.”

Joining her on Team Usher is Vedo, whose take on Justin Bieber’s “Boyfriend” impressed the man credited with discovering Bieber. “My experience on The Voice so far [is] much more than I envisioned. It has been very overwhelming but in a good way,” he said. “When a snippet of my blind audition aired, my Twitter mentions [and] Facebook notifications were being flooded, along with all the calls and texts I was receiving at one time. I loved it.”

“My last 24 hours since the premiere have been wonderful,” explained the R&B singer, who is on Twitter at @VedoTheSinger and also has videos on YouTube under the same username. “Several people have already recognized me from the show. Usher mentioned and followed me on Twitter. Christina Millan sub-tweeted me! My Twitter went up 4,000-plus followers in a matter of 24 hours, Facebook likes went up dramatically, and my Instagram likes as well. So I’ve been a celeb for the last 24 hours. “

Vedo’s biggest supporter is his mother, whom he spoke quite a bit about during blind auditions, and he shared with us some of the lessons he’s learned from her. “My mother has been a major inspiration for me, and some of the most valuable things she has taught me are [to] keep God first, do right by people, never give up, go after your dream and stop at nothing. Don’t let anybody tell you that you can’t do something.”

So what does he hope to learn while being mentored Usher? “A few things I want to learn from my coach [are] how to stay relevant when the industry changes so much, how to stand out, how to convey emotion no matter what kind of song you sing,” he said, “and what is it going take to win the competition?”

Find out who else will join Christian, Jess and Vedo as The Voice continues its blind auditions tonight and Tuesday at 8 PM ET/PT on NBC.

For more on The Voice and its artists, you can visit BFTV’s dedicated The Voice blog, Big Red Chairs.

(c)2013 Brittany Frederick/Big Red Chairs. Excerpts appear at Starpulse and Examiner with permission. All rights reserved. No reproduction permitted. Visit my official website and follow me on Twitter at @bigredchairs.