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The Voice Interviewby Pattye Grippo    

The Voice

This is an interview with Team Christina & Team Cee Lo on February 28, 2012 about the show The Voice.

Question:
Sera, how was that for you to have Christina get on the stage after you already knew that you were on her team, everything had gone well and then to have her get up and sing with you?

Sera Hill:
I just want to say that it was unbelievable. She's my idol, she's an idol and I wasn't expecting it. I was just trying not to trip and fall and try to sing the notes right. Christina singing with me was just an added bonus and it was just so surreal my dreams came true. It was a dream come true, absolutely.

Question:
The Shield Brother, you guys have gotten quite a lot of attention on Twitter last night and people are starting to recognize actually all of the artists including some celebrities. How does that make you feel to have a brand new fan base?

Rory Shield:
It's incredible. We've never had such an impact. Before this thing, we had like no Twitter followers and then within an hour, we had thousands compared to what we had.

Tristan Shield:
It's actually 1,000. From zero to a thousand is what we're saying, but it's not like millions. I think that America really loves rock and roll which is why they loved getting punched in the face last night by us. I think the fan base is there, they just didn't realize it.

Rory Shield:
Yes, they didn't know what they knew.

Question:
Sera, can you talk about what it feels like to be the last artist to steal Christina's team?

Sera Hill:
I was hoping that I would actually get to audition. I was one of the very last people to go and I was like, oh gosh, what if all the teams are full and no one takes me. So the fact that Christina turned around and it was just amazing. It helped me bring back the real soul, the real music that I've always loved. She's the best role model for that. The best person for it, absolutely.

Question:
Sera, were you aware that there was only one choice left and that the other three people couldn't pick you anymore? Were you aware from the beginning that you were strictly singing to the back of Christina's chair?

Sera Hill:
I had no idea. I went up there literally blind. I was just hoping somebody would turn around. I didn't know who it was going to be.

Question:
The Shield Brothers, you made that little play which we enjoyed where you said this was your one chance to get off the farm and away from your parents' house. Tell us a little bit more about that. Do you guys enjoy farming? Do you do a lot of work when you are there farming? And when you're there, how often do you get to go out and rock and roll? Do you do a lot of gigs at the same time? Kind of what is your life like back home?

Tristan Shield:
We've been back here for about five years on the farm. We do a lot of farm work, but we were working as a band playing gigs as a professional band. All of our gigs just sort of dried up, so we knew that we needed to do something big, so that's why we chose to do The Voice.

Question:
Cheesa, how does it feel to represent the 808 on The Voice for Team Hawaii?

Cheesa Laureta:
It feels great. I moved here five years ago and to finally represent my hometown, it has definitely been a long time coming. I'm definitely happy about it. Go Hawaii!

Question:
The experiences of growing up in Hawaii in the Polynesian culture, how do you think you can implement that in your competition with The Voice?

Cheesa Laureta:
Hawaii is very supportive in terms of supporting other artists, so I love to show that I love a spirit and show our love towards everybody just spread the love.

Question:
Did any of you know that they were down towards the end and that they didn't have a lot of spots left? Did that make you more nervous of did that not really affect you?

Lee Koch:
I think there are a few days of auditioning and I'm not sure how they show it on TV, maybe just as two. When we're told we're going to be on one of the later days, I think we kind of assumed like all right, it's going to be down to the wire. We don't know how many spots are left. It could be one, it could be five, but we know there's probably naturally only going to be a few left. I think it is a little more nerve racking for the people who have to go toward the end. That's the only way it can work and its how the cards are dealt.

Question:Rory Shield:
We really feel like it's pretty incredible that we got the chance to even be on the show. We feel like we're punks that have snuck through the back door somehow and broke into the show. It doesn't make any sense normally this is not for our genre of music. It's just been incredible.

Question:
What would you guys say is the strangest unknown fact about the two of you?

Rory Shield:
I once hit a deer when I was skiing. That has nothing to do with music, but it's strange. Strange and unknown.

Question:
Lee, what was going through your head when it took so long to get a reaction? Your style is so different from what Christina does. What are you anticipating out of the collaboration?

Lee Koch:
I did get a little nervous as it was coming down to the final seconds of my song and when she did hit her button; it was definitely a shock, a little bit surreal. I didn't realize I pointed to her until I saw it air last night. I thought I just kind of kept playing and didn't even realize she turned around, but no, it was a shock, but it was great. I'm thrilled to work with Christina. I know it's an odd matchup, but I think that makes for more entertainment viewing. She does some bluesy kind of stuff, I do some bluesy kind of stuff. I think we can find a middle ground and do some sweet stuff.

Question:
You had no way of knowing that it was down to just her?

Lee Koch:
Exactly.

Question:
Lee, I just wanted to talk a little bit about being a baker. I know some places where bakers are the one that get to work at 3:00 in the morning and things like that. When did you start and you made it seem like this was not a bad job that you wanted to get rid of?

Lee Koch:
I'm no stranger to getting up at 3:00 am and riding my bike to work. It was two and a half miles away and my wife and I would ride our bikes. It would kind of help us wake up before starting our day. It's a great job, man. To be honest, it's still something that we're considering in the future. We may be 50 when we start our own bakery, but it's just awesome. Its so hands on, everyone is happy because you're serving them fresh, hot bread. It was a bread bakery, by the way. We didn't do cupcakes and cake. I've been seeing a lot of funny stuff on Twitter about all of that, but I'm not a cake baker. So yes, it's a beautiful occupation and I admire anyone who does it and does it well.

Question:
When would you get off of work then? Did that blend really well to be able to go do some music for the rest of the day?

Lee Koch:
No, it blended horribly because I came out of the music lifestyle by going to bed around 2 or 3, tearing down and trucking all of my stuff out of the truck, and then having to wake up again. Yes, it's kind of like you've got to pick one or the other.

Question:
Can you talk about kind of just what was running through your mind when you were singing on stage? Were you trying not to look at the chairs or were you focused on that?

Wade:
I tried not to focus on the chairs and play to the audience, but it's hard not to think in the first couple of seconds of the performance, I was like come on, somebody turn around, turn around. Finally when Cee Lo pressed his button, it was just that internal sigh of relief and it just made things a lot easier.

Tristan Shield:
The song was actually a lot harder than it looks because we bumped it up a few keys, probably harder than it sounded because you can't really see it. Anyway, when Cee Lo turned around, we were like, screw it, let's go crazy. That's when we proceeded to jump around and throw mic stands and stuff like that. And I had my jacket on and I was like, what the hell, it's my jacket. How come you have those cool studs on it and I don't have anything cool at all?

Sera Hill:
I'll just say that what was going through my mind was oh my gosh, this is a once in a lifetime opportunity and you've got to nail it. I just was trying not to fall in those high heels.

Lee Koch:
I connected with my siblings in the audience because they were going nuts and really, they kind of carried me through the whole performance. I didn't really focus on the chairs too much at all.

Wade:
I don't know if you noticed on my performance when Cee Lo turned around, I almost stopped singing. I made it. Done deal.

Cheesa Laureta:
It was so close to the end of my song, I was preparing my speech to say thank you for listening and I'm really glad that Cee Lo turned around at the last minute, such a blessing.

Question:
The Shield Brothers, you two just started performing together five years ago. What did you do musically before that? Were you solo or where you in different bands?

Tristan Shield:
We were students before that and we were not really musical. We kind of just decided that because we like music so much that we were going to be rock stars and then we just did it.

Rory Shield:
Yes, our parents aren't even particularly musical or anything. We don't want to get real jobs and it would just be totally rad to play all the time.

Question:
Is that kind of a real job now?

Rory Shield:
Yes it is which is amazing. I can't believe it's kind of worked.

Tristan Shield:
I know.

Question:
What are your thoughts on the upcoming rounds? Are you nervous? Are you excited? What are you kind of thinking about that in general?

Cheesa Laureta:
I'm definitely excited. If I Were a Boy was an okay performance on my part and I'm just ready to kill it on the battle rounds and just show and prove that I deserve to be here.

Lee Koch:
Depending on my matchup, really anybody on a team is awesome. I really got past the nervousness and whoever I end up with; it's going to be fun to be on stage with them because they're all good people. I'm really not nervous; I'm more excited to find out what the song is and who my partner is.

Wade:
I would just like to say that I'm sort of nervous and I don't know who I'm going up against. I'm in awe of all of Cee Lo. Everybody is just awesome, but I'm also confident that I have what it takes to make it to the next level.

Sera Hill:
I will say that I'm excited and I'm just looking forward to seeing what Christina has in mind for the battle rounds and seeing how she pairs the teams up because once again, everyone is so incredible and I just can't wait to see what she comes up with and do my best with it.

Tristan Shield:
As much as we joke around, we really take our craft really seriously and we learned that from our mentor who is Keith Evick who is the guitar player for Bret Michaels. Even though it's like rock and it needs to be fun, you take it very seriously, so we're really excited to be challenged by Cee Lo in this round to take a song that is not necessarily for us and make it our own.

Rory Shield:
Yes and try to listen to him, too. He's got the essence for rock, Cee Lo does.

Question:
The Shield Brothers just mentioned that the guitar player for Bret Michaels is one of their mentors. Have you all worked with them before or is that just sort of like an idol for you?

Tristan Shield:
We've worked with Pete a lot and basically helping him demo songs and stuff, like singing for him. We basically just come and add singers.

Rory Shield:
Bret has always been like our rock and roll idol. He's amazing. He actually Twittered about us before we went onto the show, my mind is exploding right now.

Question:
What was it about The Voice that made you guys want to try out for that instead of Idol or X-Factor?

Rory Shield:
We really feel like The Voice values the artist and not just like the singer. They value the best voice possible, but they understand we want to have a band on our show, we want to have a great R and B singer on our show, or we want to have this fabulous diva. We just wanted to represent rock and we just felt like it's not being represented anywhere in reality television, so we decided to do it. We're done. Not out of the conversation, but that was our answer.

Question:
Have any of you auditioned for any other singing competitions besides The Voice?

Tristan Shield:
Hell no.

Sera Hill:
No.

Cheesa Laureta:
Yes, a lot.

Wade:
I did American Idol.

Sera Hill:
I tried out for the P. Diddy show and American Idol, didn't work out.

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