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From “The Voice” to Belmont: Gracee Shriver reflects on her past, future in the music industry

Having already fulfilled her dreams of being a contestant on NBC’s “The Voice,” freshman Gracee Shriver is fulfilling another dream of hers — going to college in Nashville, Tennessee.

As a 16-year-old contestant on the competition show’s 17th season, the Oklahoma native worked with acclaimed artists such as country musician Blake Shelton and Taylor Swift, who Shriver said was a personal role model.

On the show, Shriver impressed the coaches and audience with performances of songs “Leave The Pieces” and “American Honey,” making it to the show’s live top 20 eliminations out of 48 contestants.

The experience she gained by being around so many different musicians made her time on the show special to her and gave her clarity as to what she wanted to do with her musical career, she said.

Shriver said “the exposure … to that side of the industry made me want to do it even more.”

And since her time on “The Voice,” she has already begun a successful solo music career, having commercially released three singles: “Innocent,” “Meant To Be” and “Game Over.”

Writing these songs, Shriver said, has proven a meaningful outlet for her.

Shriver said while she is a country singer at heart, she wants to subvert norms and stand out against her country contemporaries.

“I always wanted to be different than everybody else,” said Shriver of her music.

At Belmont, Shriver is pursuing a degree in music business. 

Shriver said she hopes to learn more about a side of the industry “The Voice” didn’t introduce her to — as well as to create more music.

And despite the way COVID-19 has disrupted that goal, Shriver said she remains optimistic about the college years ahead of her — and encouraged other artists to keep creating during the pandemic.

“You can definitely still post covers — and writing songs, you can do that from anywhere. So I would encourage that, and social media as well, reaching out to people.”

Ultimately, Shriver looks forward to her next four years at Belmont.

“I’m really excited for this chapter and all of the connections I’m going to make.” 

This article written by Maddie Buchman.

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