Her audition: Abby Celso, 20, of Rochester, N.Y., auditioned with Tori Kelly’s “Should’ve Been Us.” She found her groove on the chorus, prompting Adam Levine to turn around. Pharrell Williams soon followed as Abby’s performance kept getting stronger. Pharrell told Abby “there’s nothing like you on this show.” Abby decided to join Team Pharrell.
Her background: As she was growing up, Abby says her father was in a band and would invite her up on stage to sing. That “drilled into my brain, ‘This is what I want to do.'” So she joined a band called The Swooners. They perform Motown, jazz and funk music, she says. Abby says her mom was always her number one fan, and encouraged her to try out for The Voice. She died of cancer in September. “She used to called me her songbird,” Abby says. “So I want to do this for her.”
What the show didn’t show:
As a teen, she attended a National Catholic Youth Conference and got to perform a solo of The Beatles “Let It Be” in front of a crowd of 23,000.
She’s a graduate of Irondequoit High School, where she was involved in a number of musical theater productions.
She was also a member of the choir at Irondequoit’s Christ the King Church.
She won a competition called “Lovin’ Cup Idol” last year, singing “Rich Girl” by Hall & Oates and “Manhattan” by Sara Bareilles in the finale. The latter is particularly impressive; I’ve embedded it below.
Speaking of Idol, she also triumphed at the American Idol Experience theme park attraction at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Florida shortly before it closed in 2014.
She then launched a successful Go Fund Me drive to make it to the auditions in California, explaining in her campaign pitch that she didn’t have the money to make the trip on “such short notice.”
On Facebook, the band she sings with — The Swooners — describes their music as “soft enough for a romantic date, exciting enough for the most avid listener.” You can learn more about them here.
As for her decision to choose Pharrell as her coach? “You’ve got to take into consideration his background,” she told her local TV station. “Not only is he a performer, he creates so many different types of music and he’s an amazing producer. And I just felt it when he was looking at me. He seemed very genuine.”
Chloe Kohanski became the first female rocker to win The Voice in Season 13. She became the sixth member of Team Blake to win the show. To read what Chloe has to say about her musical future, head here.