Finding her voice on The Voice: Lauren Duski
This week on She’s in the City, we talk music and her new EP with 2017 The Voice runner-up Lauren Duski. She offers much honesty and encouragement about leaving behind the comfortable for the creative and shares the journey to find her own voice through the Voice.
Lauren cut her artistic teeth on Patsy Cline and classic country music at age 9 when she began to play shows at various locations in her hometown of Gaylord, Michigan. She saw even then how much music resonated with people and longed to have a career that she knew could change people’s lives. After some dissension and bullying from fellow classmates for missing birthday parties and “not being a normal kid,” Lauren forsook music until after her college years when she felt compelled away from the safer vocation of dentistry and propelled to pursue her deep seeded passion to change lives through music. She also shares for us instances of many earthly angels who spoke into her and into the truth of her calling.
“It took a couple years of letting fear hold be back, but I’m very grateful to not be in that place anymore,” she says with a sigh a relief and a clear posture of gratitude. In spite of the renewal of her childhood love affair with music, a web of insecurities and self-doubt left Lauren on the brink of giving up and coming home after her first two arduous years in Nashville.
That’s when everything turned around. After already admitting defeat to friends and family and planning to head home, Lauren received a DM on Instagram from the Voice, seeking her out to come audition for the 2017 season. She reluctantly drove down to audition in Atlanta, was cast, and one year later walked away runner-up. “That was the crash course that I needed to get myself in the game,” she says. It forced her to face head on, in front of millions of people, what she was most scared of. It forced her to find her why with music – “letting people know that they’re not alone.”
Though the year taping The Voice felt surreal for Lauren, it forced her onto a more public stage than she could have imagined, and it helped her realize throughout the experience that the audience wasn’t there to judge; they really were just there to enjoy the music.
“The coaches make you feel like you’re family. It is a TV show, but the judges really do care.” Lauren recounts many more details of her experience on the show, including her appreciation for being part of Team Blake (Shelton) and how he advised her early on that “it’s less about the outcome than the journey.”
A few things not to miss!
Ghost in This House, which Lauren claims was her favorite performance on the show. “I knew right when I heard it, ‘this is the kind of song I need to be singing and writing after the show, something this honest and vulnerable.’”
Midwestern Girl, her new EP released earlier this year. This record shadows her journey through insecurity and discovering who she wants to be and what her music needs to be, much of which was inspired by her real life followers who wrote letters sharing the trials they were facing while producing the record.
“[All their letters] made me realize my insecurities aren’t making me any less worthy of connection with people - why can’t I just be me?” The result? The fabulously raw and honest, Costume Party.
Do miss out on following Lauren’s work. Her voice is as big as her heart, and she’s committed to opening both up for the good and the joy of her listeners.