Brooke Simpson Interview: 'The Voice' finalist shares Miley Cyrus' thoughts on losing Chloe Kohanski and Addison Agen, and more
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 12/20/2017
Brooke Simpson finished The Voice's thirteenth season in third place behind runner-up Addison Agen and the show's winner Chloe Kohanski.
Brooke, a 26-year-old singer from the Haliwa-Saponi tribe in North Carolina who currently resides in Fort Lauderdale, FL, represented Miley Cyrus' team in the finale. Chloe was on Blake Shelton's team, while Addison sang on behalf of Adam Levine's team.
Red Marlow, who finished fourth in the competition, was also a "Team Blake" member.
Home viewers voted for The Voicewinner based on the performances Monday night. Brooke belted out "Oh Holy Night" and debuted her original song "What Is Beautiful." She also sang "Wrecking Ball" in a memorable duet with her coach.
Brooke wasn't crowned champion of The Voice, but she walked away with a lot more than just a title.
On Wednesday, Brooke talked to Reality TV World about the season's results and what it was like for Miley to watch two of her former team members -- Chloe and Addison, who joined her team during the Blind Auditions -- place first and second, respectively. Below is what Brooke had to say.
Reality TV World: Were you surprised by the finale results? What was your prediction going into Tuesday night's show, and if you could go back to Monday night's performance show and do it all over again, is there something you'd change or do differently?
Brooke Simpson: Honestly, I wasn't shocked at all, just because it was so hard to come up with a gameplan of my predictions, because Red is the best of the best in his field, in country music. Red is the best.
And in folk music, singer/songwriter music, Addison is the best of the best at such a young age. But she is literally a prodigy, she's amazing. And then Chloe, she is the strongest woman in our generation for rock music, and she's honestly changing pop culture when it comes to rock music.
And then me in pop music, so I felt like it was anyone's game. I could've seen it go a million different ways, whether it was completely flipped around and it was Chloe getting fourth and Red winning, and me and Addison in the middle where we were, or whatever way it could have been!
I'm just so proud of how far we've come. We're a really tight-knit Top 12, but an even closer Top 4. Red is like another dad to me, and also like a brother and also like a best friend.
And then Addison and Chloe, I've known them since Day 1. So the only thing that's sad is we won't see each other every day any more. But the exciting thing is all of us have amazing careers after this. So, I'm just really excited to see what the future holds for all of us... So there's nothing that I would change.
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Reality TV World: Chloe and Addison were both members of Miley's team at the start of the show, but she allowed them to be stolen. If Miley held onto them, the 1st, 2nd and 3rd place finishers could've been her team, which would've been unbelievable! What are your thoughts on that, and did Miley ever talk to you about having made a mistake? Many viewers assume she was kicking herself.
Brooke Simpson: Yeah. One, Miley is so proud of them. And I am so proud of them! I mean, come on, OG Team Miley! We are forever sisters. (Laughs) But that's something she's super proud of, and I think she takes pride in that because it shows she has great instinct on whom to press her button for, and also, we actually did talk about that.
I was like, "Man, you have three OG members in the Top 4! How does that feel?" And she said with Addison, she wouldn't have had it any other way because while yes, selfishly, she wished she could have had that extra person on her team to make it that far, she's so proud of how far she came.
And also, she knew from the get-go -- even when she pressed her button -- that Adam was a better fit for her. She could tell that the chemistry was there, and actually, when Miley let go of [Addison] in the Battles, she said she did it knowing that Addison wasn't going anywhere.
And then also, with Chloe, Miley said she felt like -- because as you know, when Chloe was on "Team Miley," Chloe had a lot of comparisons to Miley because they're both so similar, even in the way that they look.
But Miley's so happy that Chloe is getting the recognition for her creativity that she deserves. Because being on "Team Blake" and knowing that she's a rock artist, obviously you know that all of that is all Chloe.
But I think if she was still on "Team Miley," a lot of that creativity, the credit would've been given to Miley and not so much Chloe herself, who single-handedly is the creative genius behind every single moment onstage that she does. So yes, it sucks that she could've had three people in the Top 4, but it's just so beautiful how it turned out, and everything happens for a reason.
Also during the conference call, Brooke talked to reporters about how she came to audition for The Voice and what Miley taught her that meant the most.
Did you attend an open-call audition for The Voice or were you invited to audition?
Brooke Simpson: Well, I auditioned for The Voice four years ago at an open call, and then I made it through that first one, but then I didn't make it past the next round. So I didn't go to the Blind Auditions, but four years later, someone from The Voice -- honestly, it just felt like the perfect time that God just put it in my life.
Because someone reached out through email that I don't even use anymore. It's a junk email, and then they tried to call a number I don't have anymore. Thank God it's my dad's number now... So there were three different times this one person tried to contact me, and it was just for a callback, not even the Blind Auditions.
So I went into it thinking it's going to be the same thing, like, "I'll go and nothing's going to happen." Because that's all I was used to, you know? And from that, back in February, and then to look at where my life is now, it has drastically changed forever.
What did Miley teach you during your time on The Voice that you really took to heart?
Brooke Simpson: Honestly, working with Miley was a dream, and it still is a dream. I know it's just the beginning for our friendship and working relationship... But I learned so much.
I learned how to be a collaborator, I learned how to be an even more creative person, because my job before coming to The Voice, I was a creative assistant at the church. But working with her and getting a taste of the music industry for the first time in my life, it opened my eyes to a whole new level of creativity.
I learned so much as a writer and as an artist as a whole. She's honestly one of the most genuine humans I've ever met, and just getting that opportunity to get to know her and learn from her when it comes to music and just life in general, it was such an honor.
What's next for you?
Brooke Simpson: I'm just really excited about everything that's in store for all of us, even beyond just me, Red, Addison, and of course Chloe. I'm just excited to see what the entire Top 12 does. We're such a tight-knit group, but for me, myself, I honestly just want to start.
I already have so many songs that I've written and I want to start recording and doing shows, specifically in North Carolina, Florida and Tennessee. They were my biggest slupporting states. But yeah, I just want to get the ball rolling. I'm so excited an opportunity like The Voice made me fortunate enough to do this for the rest of my life, so I'm ready to start doing it.
What type of music can people expect from you? I know you come from a Christian-gospel music background.
Brooke Simpson: Yeah, absolutely. I come from a Christian background and of course worship music is always going to be a part of my life. It's something I'm always doing, but actually it's funny, because I always say I'm a happy girl writing sad songs. A lot of my songs are going to be coming from real-life experiences, whether they're from love, heartbreak, friendship.
Because my biggest goal with any show that I do -- whether it's in front of 10 or 10,000 people -- is for people to be able to relate to my lyrics and be moved by them, and most importantly, know that they're not alone in what they're feeling and we're in this together. So my music will just be from the heart, whether it's about God or relationships, that's what I aim to do.
Could you talk a little bit about how Miley and yourself collaborated on your original song, "What Is Beautiful?"
Brooke Simpson: So, the story behind that is very special. Miley found these two incredible, strong female writers -- because obviously, from Day 1, Miley is a big advocate of making "HERstory" -- but she found these writers and told them my story and showed them every video of me there was on YouTube.
And after that, they wrote the song and custom made it for me, which is so special. And what's even more special is in the studio, Miley made sure that the writers were all there, which was such a special moment.
The song is such a special song to me just because not only is it something that you can hear -- or you would think of to hear on the radio -- but also, the message behind it is so strong.
I feel like these days, there's a lot of meaningless stuff on the radio, but to sing something that uplifts, not just young women, but uplifts people of all ages, races, genders, and all sexualities, just to know that you should be so happy with who you are in your skin, that's so special. And I'm just so happy I get to play a role in relaying that message.