One of the most heartbreaking stories to emerge on Monday night’s episode of The Voice came from Lauren Duski. In rehearsals for Lauren Duski's Knockouts performance on The Voice, she revealed that her song choice for the week was directly tied to her mentor, who helped her get her footing when she relocated to Nashville. While speaking to camera, Duski recalled how a local promoter, Ann, became a mentor when she was new to the country music hub in the heart of Tennessee. Duski then went on to disclose that Ann had been diagnosed with ALS a few years ago and that she had become a carer for her. It was clear that the connection to Ann was deeply personal as well as professional and that Duski would dedicate this final Knockouts round to her. As she put it, "Being here is the greatest gift because I can finally show her everything is worth it.”
When she got into the rehearsal space with coach Blake Shelton and Knockouts opponent Andrea Thomas, Duski appeared nervous. Thomas really swung for the fences with her inventive, Mariah Carey-esque spin on Faith Hill's "Cry." Duski would have to find a way to match that energy if she wanted to emerge victorious. Instead, Duski chose Alison Krauss' "When You Say Nothing At All." The song was a total home run because it helped bring out a more mellow side to Duski's live performance habits while showcasing a darker, more in-tune-with-the-soulful edge that she was eager to bring to the table.
Coach Blake Shelton was absolutely stunned with Duski's first and second performances in the rehearsal space. Agreeing that it was a good instinct from Duski to want to bring things down a notch and show some emotion, Shelton cautioned her to not get too lost in the song for fear of losing tempo or losing her audience.
Of course, Duski nailed it. I mean, it was pretty obvious from the start. The way in which she navigated a middle road between an aching in her voice with a steadiness showed so real technique there. Here's to hoping she can continue to bring that quiet fire during the live performances.