Finalist: Chevel Shepherd makes the top four on NBC's 'The Voice'
Remaining contestants will compete again on Monday
FARMINGTON — Chevel Shepherd fans, rejoice. Team Kelly is still in the running on "The Voice," thanks to the 16-year-old junior from Farmington High School whose performance of a country classic last night took her to the finals.
Country music was well represented tonight as Shepherd and her duet partner from Monday, Kirk Jay of Team Blake, advanced to the final four on NBC’s “The Voice” national talent competition.
The other finalists are Team JHud’s Kennedy Holmes and Team Blake's Chris Kroeze, according to results posted on official The Voice app.
The final four will compete again next Monday when the show airs at 7 p.m.
Shepherd got a hug from celebrity coach Kelly Clarkson after her name was called early in the show. When asked earlier by host Carson Daly what the best advice was she’d received from Clarkson, Shepherd said, “She’s always told me to just be myself and have fun.”
Strong performance Monday
On Monday Shepherd sang a country duet with Team Blake’s Kirk Jay, the pair sharing Jason Aldean’s 2009 hit “She’s Country.”
Jay appeared briefly with Shepherd after the show when the college arranged a quick video appearance by Shepherd at the end of the Monday night watch party in the Henderson Fine Arts Center.
"She's the best country singer I've seen," Jay said to Shepherd's fans as they stood backstage in "The Voice's" Burbank soundstage.
Since the live show was filmed an hour before it was broadcast here, Shepherd described for the Monday night crowd how she'd spent her past hour in a red carpet setting, giving interviews.
Jay, of Montgomery, Alabama, said on the show that he hopes to continue to showcase country music. He said advancing makes him feel “one step closer to all my dreams coming true.”
Worth the wait
While the duet came early in Monday night's broadcast, viewers at home and in the watch party waited until almost 9 p.m. for Shepherd's solo performance. When it was over it brought the watch party crowd to its feet.
Late in the show she sang the classic “Blue,” a vocally complex song written for Patsy Cline in 1958 by Billy Mack. LeAnn Rimes won the Grammy with it in 1996.
Judge and celebrity coach Kelly Clarkson, along with judge Adam Levine, wished her well and said they hoped she made the final four.
“This is pure country, this is what I fell in love with as a little girl,” Clarkson said of Shepherd's performance.
Holmes wins elimination round
Having just turned 14, Holmes, of St. Louis, is the show’s youngest contestant.
She posted on Twitter, "I AM IN THE #VOICEFINALE THANKS TO ALL OF YOU! Wow you all saved me tonight and I am forever grateful. I love each and every one of you! #TeamKennedy @NBCTheVoice."
Kroeze lives in Barron, Wisconsin.
Next week is the final round
The finalists are now just one step from possibly winning this season's competition. On Monday, Dec. 17, the four will perform. On Tuesday, Dec. 18, the winner will be announced.
Shepherd on Dec. 4 made the cut and advanced to the group of eight following her performance Dec. 3 when she sang a cover of the Loretta Lynn standard "You're Lookin' at Country."
The performance drew praise from Lynn, who gave the young singer her approval via social media.
That performance was just one of several Shepherd has made on the program this season as she has advanced through the blind auditions, knockout rounds and elimination rounds. Shepherd has been in Los Angeles full time since early November, when she began appearing on the show on a weekly basis.