Havana Brown helps Ricky Martin spice things up on The Voice
EVEN a star as big as Ricky Martin needs a bit of help from time to time.
When it comes to guiding his nine remaining singers on The Voice Australia, the Latin pop star has turned to our own DJ-turned-singer Havana Brown.
Brown is one of four celebrity mentors set to appear in tomorrow's showdowns, during which the singers who survived the battles will compete for a spot in the live shows.
Brisbane singer Megan Washington returns, after assisting Keith Urban in the first season, to help Joel Madden, while Kirk Pengilly of INXS will assist Kylie Minogue and apl.de.ap joins former Black Eyed Peas bandmate will.i.am.
ARIA-nominated Brown successfully made the transition from DJ and producer to singer and recently toured the US in support of Bruno Mars.
"DJing definitely gave me confidence and some experience with touring and travelling and building a fan base before I'd released my first single," Brown told The Guide.
"It also helped me with the type of music I wanted to do and the type of sound I wanted, so when I got to the studio I knew exactly the type of artist I wanted to be."
That first single, We Run The Night, was remixed by US chart-topper Pitbull and saw Brown's name hit No 26 on America's Billboard Hot 100 chart.
The 29-year-old beauty said she felt right at home with Team Ricky on The Voice set.
"When I got to meet him (Martin) it felt like I'd known him forever," she said.
"We just instantly clicked. He made me feel very comfortable.
"He loves music so much and you feel that energy from him."
Brown says performance and song choice are major factors for singers hoping to stand out on the small screen.
"It's about the emotion and delivering the story of the song," she said.
"It could be a classical song, which is not something I would generally listen to, but I can tell if it's in pitch, if it's building right, if I'm feeling moved by it. All types of music are very similar in that way and if you're able to feel those types of things, which I did on many occasions, then it's really exciting."
Brown said the showdowns were the perfect time for The Voice contestants to take risks.
"You've got to break the mould to get to know your vocals and yourself as an artist. You can't do that until you've tried it all."
Brown is full of praise for Martin's all-star team, which includes the singers he saved from Kylie Minogue's team: Thando Sikwila and Jackson Thomas.
"I definitely feel like one of them has to be the winner of the competition," she said.
The Voice Australia airs tomorrow at 6.30pm and Monday at 7.30pm on Channel 9/WIN.