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Let me tell you about my relationship with the reality TV show The Voice. I started watching it a few years ago intrigued by the concept of judging someone based on their voice alone, not other superficial things like looks. Vocal talent was what really counted.

My daughter also enjoyed the show so watching it together has become one of our traditions. But I still watched the show through a haze of ironic snobbery, not really willing to engage with the show with an open mind. Then three things happened that challenged my reality based prejudice forever.

The first was Kevin Sims’ rendition of Chandelier. What his performance showed me was that behind the glitz and glamour was a man baring his soul. Within the bars of his short blind audition you could hear the pain of his journey, the emotion and the pure talent.

The second and third things both involved a slight young lady from the North, Chloe Castro. Stepping onto the stage looking like Joni Mitchell she produced a vocal rich with a centuries old experience that belied her actual age of 19. Then she sang a duet with Alaric Green (hey guys please record this as a single) that brought tears to the eyes of coach Ricky Wilson.

The performance was so raw and honest I defy even the hardest cynic to not be moved. I was converted – the scales of cynicism dropped from my eyes. What I heard was exhilarating. It was talent and passion. My daughter and I were gutted when Chloe had to leave the show. I had become convinced that she would be a huge success.

Forward on two years and Castro, bravely battling back from a diagnosis of bi-polar, has just released her debut single Kerbside, and the good news is it is everything we could have hoped for. Music has been Chloe’s therapy and her new song buzzes with the vibrancy of a fighter. The lyrics are interesting, it is well produced but not over wrought, and crucially her amazing voice is in fine fettle. The song itself features distorted guitars and a tight drum beat that drives the track along on a wave of exciting tension. There is a part where she raps reflecting her interest in hip-hop. The words speak starkly and defiantly about an abusive relationship.

The track is an eclectic mix of influences, one moment channelling Lily Allen, the next sounding like latter day Taylor Swift. But it most certainly exists as a sound in its own right, injected with stylistic flourishes unique to Castro.

I am excited to hear more from her and continue to be an advocate for her talent, it is blatantly obvious that her voice deserves to be heard by a large audience.

You can get a free download of Chloe Castro’s sparkling debut single by signing up for her mailing list. https://www.chloecastro.co.uk

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