Triumphant Home Coming for Beverly McClellan
Singer-songwriter Beverly McClellan, 42, has had the year of her life. After appearing on the first season of NBC’s hit show The Voice and making it to the top four she’s been catapulted to national fame and has been playing gigs she could only dream about in the past. Her latest: playing with blues singer Jonny Lang and opening for legendary blues guitarist B.B. King.
She released a new album this year, Fear Nothing, and cleared up one misconception about it during the interview. Christina Aguilera is not featured on one of the songs despite what Wikipedia says online.
"She’s not on my album I don’t know where that came from. We do have future plans to do something," she said. "Not sure if we’ll put it on hers, or mine, or what. But that’s on the table so it’s pretty cool."
Despite Aguilera’s absence, though, her album is certainly not short on popular talent: the band of the late Etta James is featured, which McClellan says ranks just behind opening for B.B. King as the biggest moment of her career since The Voice. James is McClellan’s idol.
And for those that didn’t watch The Voice here’s a little recap. The show premiered last year on NBC and was an instant hit. The singing competition’s twist is that when the musician initially auditions, the judges are turned away from them and must judge them only on their voice. If a judge pushes their button and turns around they will automatically be added to that judge’s team. If more than one judge turns around the contestant gets to choose among those judges.
Two judges, Aguilera and front man for Maroon 5, Adam Levine, both turned around for McClellan. She chose Aguilera.
"Hands down she has more of an involvement in the gay community and her voice is flawless. She’s like lipstick on fire," she said. "It was very fun being on Christina Aguilera’s team."
Besides the talent, the show was also applauded for its LGBT friendliness. Several LGBT contestants were featured during its inaugural season and two, including McClellan, made it to the final four. Being true to oneself is what McClellan walked away with from the show.
"Staying true to myself was the right decision. That’s what I learned from The Voice," she said. "They gave me a chance and opportunity to show it to the world. I could have folded and tried to have been somebody else but I didn’t. I’ve been too long being me and that’s ok."
McClellan said she’s always stayed true to herself and never hid whom she was.
"I have never let anybody tell me one way, or the other, how I should or shouldn’t be," she said. "I’ve been a strong little bitch all of my life. That’s the truth."
Still calling Fort Lauderdale her home, she’s excited about coming back to her roots to perform at Pride South Florida, March 10 in Fort Lauderdale, PrideFest of the Palm Beaches March 24 in Lake Worth, and PrideFest of the Treasure Coast April 1 in Port St. Lucie.
There are two words that sum up Beverly McClellan - Cool Chick.
See SFGN’s special Pride Issue distributed March 10-11 at Pride South Florida in Fort Lauderdale at Holiday Park, 1150 G. Harold Martin Drive, for the complete interview with McClellan. Visit BeverlyMcClellan.com for more information about the singer.