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ND native Perkins continues journey on ‘The Voice’

Kat Perkins, left, stands with her sister, Kelly Robinson, in this submitted photo in February.

For being from such a tiny town, Kat Perkins is making a big name for herself.

The Scranton native continued her journey on the NBC singing talent show “The Voice” Monday night, advancing to the second stage of the battle round after being chosen over counterpart Patrick Thomson.

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The pair squared off while singing “Whenever I Call You Friend,” a duet by Kenny Loggins and Stevie Nicks.  

During a phone interview just hours before the episode was set to air, Perkins said she’s been having the time of her life.

“The experience has been incredible,” Perkins said. “It’s such a huge opportunity to have fallen into my lap. I’m so excited to be on “The Voice” — how much bigger can it really get? I’m so grateful that everything is happening the way it is.”

Perkins’ blind audition segment — which she had to keep a secret from the time it was taped last fall — aired on the show’s March 10 episode and led to her being chosen for Adam Levine’s 13-person team of singers. For the audition, she performed Fleetwood Mac’s classic song “Gold Dust Woman.”

Perkins, 33, said her performance and the reactions of Levine and fellow “The Voice” judges Shakira, Usher and Blake Shelton that followed were like something out of a dream.

“Being there in person, it was really intense,” Perkins said. “I was so nervous. All I could try to do was to take it in and try to listen and be aware of what had happened, which was almost impossible to do. It was a surreal moment — more surreal than I could ever explain in words. After I sang -- trying to keep it together for that amount of time -- then, suddenly, these superstars are talking to me and giving me their praise and vying for my attention for their team.”

Perkins said she is thankful for the outpouring of support she has received from many people from her home state of North Dakota and her current home, Minnesota.

“It’s been excitedly overwhelming,” Perkins said. “Support has been just pouring out over the past week and I’m grateful and thankful for that — even when I want to throw my phone out the window. It’s really cool to have people so behind me. There have been so many people that have come forth that I haven’t talked to in years that I’m really grateful to be back in touch with.”

Kelly Robinson, Kat’s sister and near-constant companion throughout her “Voice” journey, stated in an email on Monday that she was thrilled when Levine chose her sister for his team.

“I thought Adam Levine was the perfect choice as Kat’s coach,” stated Robinson. “I have no doubt that he will give her the best advice to advance in the competition. He’s an all-around nice guy and Kat had a great experience being on his team. The way it all played out on television was amazing. It’s not every day that Adam Levine picks you up and spins you around.”

In addition to people reaching out from her past and present, Perkins said she recently received a phone call that she would have never imagined getting about a decade ago.

“One of the coolest things that happened in the past week was getting a call from Matt Scannell, the lead singer for Vertical Horizon,” Perkins said. “I was a huge fan of his band in the late 1990s and early 2000s. He got in touch with me through a mutual agent who we’ve used before and actually called to wish me good luck. That was a crazy moment — I was dumbfounded.”

From her humble beginnings in southwest North Dakota to being on a first-name basis with stars like Levine and Shelton, who she grew up listening to — “it’s almost weird,” she said — Perkins has been a hit on “The Voice” so far.

Like everyone else, however, her fans will have to tune in to find out how the fairytale ends.

“It’s been so much fun,” Perkins said.

She encouraged those who want a behind-the-scenes look at her experience to like her Facebook page or follow her on Twitter at katperkinsmusic.

“People can follow me a little bit more personally,” she said. “It’s fun to reach out on social media and connect there.”    

Bryan Horwath
A Wisconsin native, Horwath has been covering news in the Oil Patch of North Dakota since 2012. Horwath currently serves as the senior agriculture and political reporter for The Dickinson Press and, despite the team's tendency to always let him down, remains a diehard Minnesota Vikings fan.
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