Singer Paxton Ingram said that when he first stepped onto the stage of The Voice, he felt like he had stepped onto a television screen.

“It was the weirdest thing, but it also, it gave me a feeling of ‘if I could do this, if I can end up here, I could do anything I put my mind to,’ because one day I’m just singing in my room and the next day I’m singing in front of Christina Aguilera or Pharrell Williams and it’s just like, ‘Wow, how did I end up here?’” Ingram told uInterview exclusively at SXSW 2018 in Austin, Texas. “You know what I mean? So that kind of put things back into perspective for me, that I can kind of do whatever I want to do if I put my mind to it, in the cheesiest form.”

 

Before auditioning for The Voice, Ingram thought he would be a dancer.

“Oh, my God, before The Voice I was dancing, and I thought dancing was kind of gonna be the only thing for me because I just fell in love with it,” Ingram said. “Music has always been there, but I kinda just started to lose myself into music again. I started to sing at my church, and that kind of put my focus back onto music and I was like, ‘Why not try out for The Voice?’ You know? I was like, ‘Let me just — I have nothing to lose. I just want to get out of my house and sing.’ And so that opportunity came around, and, you know, a miracle out of nowhere happened.”

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His coach on the show was country star Blake Shelton, and Ingram described Shelton as a cool, talented person. Shelton gave Ingram advice that stuck with him.

“One thing that still sticks with me is — when you watch the Olympics, whatever sport, there’s a story of focus that these athletes have, and he told me to kind of have that focus, that same focus going into my music, whether it’s in the studio, whether it’s on stage, kind of having that tunnel vision to deliver and execute at the highest quality because it’s a race and we’re all trying to run, and I kind of use that with everything that I do,” Ingram said.

Read uInterview’s full, exclusive interview with Ingram below.

What were you doing before The Voice?

Paxton Ingram: Oh, my God, before The Voice I was dancing, and I thought dancing was kind of gonna be the only thing for me because I just fell in love with it. Music has always been there, but I kinda just started to lose myself into music again. I started to sing at my church, and that kind of put my focus back onto music and I was like, ‘Why not try out for The Voice?’ You know? I was like, ‘Let me just — I have nothing to lose. I just want to get out of my house and sing.’ And so that opportunity came around, and, you know, a miracle out of nowhere happened. Yeah. It’s kind of been a whirlwind ever since.

What was it like when you first got on that stage?

PI: Oh, my god, I felt like I jumped into the TV screen and ended up on a TV show. It was the weirdest thing, but it also, it gave me a feeling of ‘if I could do this, if I can end up here, I could do anything I put my mind to,’ because one day I’m just singing in my room and the next day I’m singing in front of Christina Aguilera or Pharrell Williams and it’s just like, ‘Wow, how did I end up here?’ You know what I mean? So that kind of put things back into perspective for me, that I can kind of do whatever I want to do if I put my mind to it, in the cheesiest form.

What was Blake Shelton like in person?

PI: Blake was ‘what you see is what you get’ times 10, you know? Just like that uncle that everybody has, and, yeah, I learned a lot from him. He was a cool dude, very talented — extremely talented. He’s one of the top selling country acts. To be mentored by someone like that was awesome.

Did he give you any advice that stuck with you?

PI: One thing that still sticks with me is — when you watch the Olympics, whatever sport, there’s a story of focus that these athletes have, and he told me to kind of have that focus, that same focus going into my music, whether it’s in the studio, whether it’s on stage, kind of having that tunnel vision to deliver and execute at the highest quality because it’s a race and we’re all trying to run, and I kind of use that with everything that I do.

Can you describe your music?

PI: I call it progressive pop. It’s a nice fusion of urban and hip hop mixed with pop that I grew up on. I was a sucker for that whole millenium bubblegum pop phase with *NSYNC and Britney [Spears] and that whole thing, and so I kind of — I definitely use that in my music, mixed with the hip hop influence that I also have.

Can you talk about your new single ‘Bad Luck?’

PI: ‘Bad Luck’ is awesome. It’s one of my favorite songs that I got to work on, and it’s out now. It’s kind of about being in this situation where you know that person’s not good for you, or whatever it is. That situation’s not good for you, but you love it — you love the chase, and it’s just kind of like you’re doing it to yourself. You’re your own bad luck. I think we’ve all been there. I love that record.

What’s coming next from you?

PI: The spring and summer has lots of new music, lots of shows, lots of traveling. I’m releasing a new single in April, which I’m super excited about. It’s called ‘Dirty.’ It’s a fun fun fun fun song, and I can’t wait til it comes out.