Meet Sasha Allen of Team Shakira on The Voice
Her audition: Sasha Allen, 30, of New York, auditioned with the Dixie Chicks’ “Not Ready to Make Nice,” though she’s not a country singer. She got through the first verse without a single coach turning around. Then all four did when her voice soared on the chorus. She chose Team Adam.
Battle Round: She was paired with Amber Carrington; they were tasked with singing “Try” by Pink. Amber was declared the winner, but both Usher and Shakira decided to try to steal Sasha. This time, she chose Team Shakira.
Knockout Round: She sang “At Last” and defeated Shawna P., who performed “Maybe I’m Amazed.”
Live Playoffs: Performed “Oh, Darling” and advanced to the Top 12 on fan voting.
Her background: A classically trained pianist, Sasha said it was her mother who decided she should become a singer. Now Sasha is a mother herself with two children — ages 7 and 7 months at the time of her blind audition. As a result, she said she’d put her music career on hold to be a full-time mom. Now she’s decided it’s time to get back in the game. “Something about having children gives you a different kind of drive,” she told The Voice. Before the motherhood hiatus, Sasha said, she paid her bills by singing background for the likes of Alicia Keys, John Legend and Christina Aguilera.
On picking Adam initially: “It’s so funny how it all feels like a blur. I’m guessing it was just a feeling from the heart. I actually don’t remember exactly what he said, but there was a passion and a fire coming from him. And that’s all you can really ask for — somebody that you feel really believes.”
On picking Shakira over Usher on the steal: “I wanted to say, ‘Time Out.’ I wanted to say, ‘Hold on, give me a minute. Can I go talk to somebody?’ They both seemed so passionate. But then I just thought about the woman aspect of it and what she (Shakira) could teach me as a female performer, and then I made my decision.
What the show didn’t show: Sasha starred as Dionne in a critically acclaimed 2009 revival of “Hair” on Broadway and, after her blind audition, said she’d love to perform on Broadway again someday. She also appeared in a 2003 film named “Camp,” an independent musical produced by Danny DeVito, and on VH1′s “Born to Diva” singing competition in 2004. The winner was Tarralyn Ramsey, who also competed on The Voice. Sasha released two singles in 2003, including a cover of Joan Osbourne’s “One of Us.” And, being a background singer for Alicia Keys, she calls herself “very good friends” with two former Voice contestants — Season 3 standout Amanda Brown and Season 2 winner Jermaine Paul. Watching both perform and do well on the show helped convince her to give it a try as well, Amanda said in a post-audition conference call with the media.
Quote: “I’ve had brushes of success, but it’s always been a brush. So the opportunity that’s here is just incredible.”
On iTunes: Her audition song, “Not Ready to Make Nice,” plus a pair of singles from 2008 (“One of Us” and “Let’s Fly Away) and several tracks from the 2009 cast album for “Hair.”
“Saving All My Love for You” / “I Will Always Love You” (Whitney Houston covers)
“Aquarius” (with the cast from “Hair”)
“Let’s Fly Away” (2008 single)