Talent Recap

Brooke Simpson: How ‘America’s Got Talent’ Journey is Different From ‘The Voice’

Brooke SimpsonNBC/Talent Recap

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Brooke Simpson is a powerhouse vocalist that brought the house down with her cover of Lizzo’s “Cuz I Love You” on America’s Got Talent. Longtime fans know that Brooke got a four-chair turn when she competed on The Voice in Season 13. She made it all the way to the finale on Miley Cyrus’ team. This time on AGT, she hopes to bring home the $1 million prize.

Brooke Simpson Shares How Competing on ‘AGT’ is Different From ‘The Voice’

Brooke is a part of the Haliwa-Saponi tribe. It’s a tribe from the very small town of Hollister, North Carolina. During her pre-audition interview on AGT, Brooke broke down in tears speaking about making sure the world never forgets them. In an exclusive interview with Talent Recap, Brooke further spoke about how she wants to highlight her tribe during her journey on the show.


“Whether it’s AGT, The Voice, or just me hustling out here in these L.A. streets, everything I do, I always do it with my tribe in mind,” she said. “Growing up as an indigenous person, I know how it feels to feel forgotten and so often left out of conversation especially knowing our history in this country. But because of that, I always want to shed light on it and I want to give the next generation of all youth, but especially indigenous youth, let them know that they can do it too.”

Brooke mentioned how growing up she didn’t have a pop star that was indigenous to look up to. She wants to be that for the next generation, a sentiment that she has shared throughout her entire music career. Even after competing on her second talent show, Brooke still did not know what to expect walking into AGT. She describes it as “a completely different experience.”

“I went into it thinking maybe I’ll have some idea of what I’m doing because of that but I was completely wrong,” she said. “It’s a completely different game, a completely different structure. It’s wild but it’s incredible and I’ve loved every single step of the journey so far.”

During her audition, Brooke said that singing in front of Simon Cowell has been a dream of hers since she was 16 years old. Once Cowell heard her sing, he made some huge comparisons that left her starstruck. Brooke relived her audition watching it back for the first time with her family in her living room on a projector.

“I just remember watching and listening to some of the words Simon was saying and using the comparisons to Kelly Clarkson and Fantasia, women that are a part of the blueprint of why my voice is what it is today,” she recalled. “They helped raise me to the vocalist I am. It was unreal.”

Brooke Blacked Out During Her Audition

Though AGT is a whole new experience for Brooke, she did notice one major similarity with The Voice. Brooke “blacked out” as soon as she stepped onto the AGT stage. She called her mom after her performance and was unable to remember any of the details. Instead, she let her husband Ray give the details.

Ray played the piano during Brooke’s audition. She told us that he is the reason she made it through the song. She felt all of the nerves go away once he smiled at her. Brooke has some big plans for the $1 million prize if she ends up winning the show.

“Every single dream that I’ve wanted to do but felt creatively stifled because of financial situations, I’m gonna make those a reality,” she said. “I want to record and finish an album. I want to start a jewelry line where I can give a spotlight on indigenous jewelry because it is so beautiful and it needs to be in the public eye way more.”

Brooke Reveals if She Still Keeps in Touch with ‘The Voice’ Castmates

On top of all of that, Brooke also wants to help her family. Speaking of family, Brooke refers to some of her castmates from The Voice as her “family.” She still does keep in touch with Addison Agen, Chloe Kohanski, Ashland Craft, Karli Webster, and Maharasyi.

Brooke said that making a whole new group of family members was actually her “favorite part of the entire experience with The Voice.” She also became close to Janice Freeman on the show. Janice sadly passed away in 2019 from a pulmonary embolism. She is still one of Brooke’s biggest inspirations in her everyday life.

“Meeting Janice is one of the greatest blessings I’ll ever have in my life,” Brooke said. “I remember our first time meeting in a room as Team Miley. A lot of the time was spent crying and praying and affirming each other and Janis was like the leader of the pack with praying for each person and pouring into each person.”

Brooke hopes that she can build the same kind of little family on AGT with her fellow contestants. Her spirit shines very bright on stage and we can’t wait to see if she makes it through to the live shows.

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