Chevel Shepherd Brings Emotional Backstory to Powerful ‘Travelin’ Soldier’ on ‘The Voice’ [Watch]
Chevel Shepherd is just 16 years old, but she brought a surprising emotional maturity to a stellar cover of the Dixie Chicks' "Travelin' Soldier" on Monday night's (Nov. 5) episode of The Voice.
Shepherd squared off against her Team Kelly teammate, Sarah Grace, in a Knockout Round that saw Grace perform Etta James' "I'd Rather Go Blind," while Shepherd stunned the audience and the judges with a powerful cover of "Travelin' Soldier," a song about a young girl who is waiting for the man she loves to come back from war.
Her performance drew praise from the judges, with her coach, Kelly Clarkson, literally leaping to her feet to applaud at the end. She deemed Shepherd the winner of the Knockout Round, but she also used her save to save Grace, retaining both team members.
Shepherd worked with Clarkson and adviser Mariah Carey to craft her performance of the song, and as she explained backstage, she chose to sing "Travelin' Soldier" because she has a personal connection to the lyrics.
"My brother Nicholas was in the Army. He served for six years," she reveals. "My mom was always worried about him, and so we would always sing this song together."
The song ends tragically, but her family's story has a happy ending.
"I'm just really happy that he's home," Shepherd says with a big smile.
Watch her winning performance in the video at the top of the story.
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