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Maize High graduate fills last spot on Team Blake on ‘The Voice’

  • The Wichita Eagle
  • Published Wednesday, March 12, 2014, at 2:14 p.m.
  • Updated Wednesday, July 16, 2014, at 3:18 p.m.

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Maize High grad Kaleigh Glanton was busy watching her song from “The Voice” move up the iTunes rock chart Wednesday after she made it to the battle rounds on “The Voice.”

The 20-year-old classical-guitarist-turned-singer advanced Tuesday during the last night of blind auditions on the NBC show. As Glanton sang Creedence Clearwater Revival’s “Have You Ever Seen the Rain,” she turned the heads of all four judges/coaches, who dubbed her sound “different,” “unique,” “quirky” and “gentle.”

Coach Adam Levine was the first to turn his chair around for Glanton, though later he said that her performance skills needed work.

Glanton said she agreed with Levine, but she chose to take a spot on Blake Shelton’s team.

Glanton spoke with The Eagle on Wednesday about her experience on the popular singing competition:

Q: You say on Twitter you didn’t get any sleep last night. How are you feeling the day after your appearance on “The Voice”?

A: I eventually got to sleep. I feel great. I’m definitely overwhelmed with all the posts and interviews and tweets. But I’m loving every second of it.

How did you get on “The Voice” and when was your show taped?

A few months ago. Without my knowing, one of my dad’s friends sent a little demo of me to my now-manager. He knew someone at “The Voice” … and they seemed to love it a lot.

When did wheels start going in motion to go out there?

It was the middle of April. Almost a year ago.

How long were you in LA?

Months really. I’ve been out there for a week or so in August and a month in October. … It’s a lot of fun out in LA.

Had you been there before?

No. I never had flown in a plane till I went out there.

Your family was there in the wings?

They got to fly down and watch my performance, and it was awesome – my dad, Howard Glanton; my mom, Michelle Wakefield; my stepdad, Bart Wakefield; and my sister, Kristina Glanton.

You didn’t seem nervous.

I did everything I could to not let my nerves get to me. … I was definitely anxious and excited and I just held my confidence, and I think that just played a huge role. … I’m used to performing, too. … I’ve performed since I was 8 on the classical guitar. I usually don’t get nervous. But that was a little different.

Did you go in wanting to be on Blake’s team? Did you have any loyalty to Adam since he went for you first?

I always wanted to be on Adam’s team, then throughout the months I had no idea … I had to go with whoever believed in me the most.

But you do agree with Adam that your performance skills need work.

I have no harsh feelings to that at all. It was mainly the look on Blake’s face when he would talk to me. He was so serious. He would just look at me the entire time. He just really made me believe him.

Where did you watch the show last night?

I watched it at Side Pockets.

What have you been doing since graduation?

When I graduated from Maize I had given up on singing as … a career choice. … I was trying to figure out what I wanted to do with my life. … There’s no way I’m ever going to let it slip away from me again.

What is there that’s lacking?

Definitely the performing part. I’m usually just sitting on a stool playing my guitar and singing, not having to engage an audience. … If I’m going to have a concert where I’m going to be standing up and moving around I’m going to have to learn … how to express myself with my hands and facial expressions … I’ve already improved so much.

What’s next on “The Voice”?

The battle rounds are coming up next week. I’m just going to keep working hard, doing everything I can to stay true to myself. That’s what I want to inspire other people to do is stay true to yourself. Don’t change for people. Just show them who you are.

What about the terms the judges used to describe your voice – different, quirky, gentle – were any of those new?

Quirky was definitely new. Gentle tone – everybody always talks to me about tone. Tone to me is the most impressive thing, the most important thing with singers because it makes you stand out. That’s a huge compliment when I hear people talking about my tone.

You mentioned on Twitter your song being No. 16 on the top rock charts? It’s longer than what was on TV, right?

It’s the full studio version. I do a lot more in it. I’m doing all I can to have people buy it (on iTunes) and move up the chart – that’s huge. I’m just so excited about that.

I know you can’t talk a lot about the show. Is there anything else you want to say?

All I can say is just thank everybody for being here to support me and all the love and praise that everyone has given me.

Reach Annie Calovich at 316-268-6596 or acalovich@wichitaeagle.com. Follow her on Twitter: @anniecalovich.

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