STORY WRITTEN BY GARY GRAFF
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After winning the eighth season of “The Voice,” Sawyer Fredericks is happy to be focusing on his own voice again.
The 17-year-old singer-songwriter from Connecticut released his debut album, “A Good Storm,” in May, debuting at No. 2 on the Billboard Folk chart and No. 5 on the Rock Albums survey. For Fredericks the best part of it all is to be able to show what he can do as a songwriter after prevailing on “The Voice” with his, well, voiced.
“I was singing all covers on the show, so it was kind of hard to convey my writing and all that,” Fredericks says by phone from his uncle’s house in Connecticut, where he was rehearsing his and for the tour. All my music is very emotional, and none of my songs are truly happy. There’s always some kind of anguish in it. But I’m just happy to be able to share the music I’ve written over the years and to be able to share something personal with my audience after doing all the (covers) on the show.”
The home-schooled Fredericks acknowledges that he may seem a bit young to be making music that’s so angst-based. But he’s not analyzing the reasons for that, either.
“I just have a really, really hard time writing happy music for some reason. It’s just not something I can really do,” He says with a laugh. “Most of the time I’m in a good mood, but if I’m starting to feel sad I’ll go and write a song. That’s just been the way I’ve always written, and it’s fun to be able to release some of that emotion in the music.”
Sawyer still gets audience requests for the covers he sang on “the Voice,” including “I’m A Man of Constant Sorrow,” John Lennon’s Imagine,” the Goo Goo Dolls’ “Iris” and more. He’s happy enough to deliver those, too, and you won’t find him saying anything negative about his experience on the show.
“I enjoyed it,” Fredericks says. “Just going to all these places I’ve never been fore and actually having people know who I am is a really cool experience, and so is performing to them. But it’s showing them who I am and what kind of music I do, the original music I have, that’s the best. There’s a lot of great supporters, which I wouldn’t have had before (‘The Voice’).”