A mum-of-two who appeared on the battle stages of The Voice on Saturday has won through to the next round of the BBC TV singing contest.
While Sally Barker, from Lutterworth, wowed the judges during the battle stages of the contest last weekend, Illston-on-theHill’s James Byron is preparing to fight for his place this Saturday.
Singer/songwriter Sally knocked out 31-year-old country music singer Talia Smith who she was paired with for the battle stages of the BBC1 programme last Saturday night.
The 54-year-old performed Dear Darlin’ by Olly Murs. She admitting when Tom Jones announced the song choice for the battle, that it was not a track she was unfamiliar with.
Footage on the show saw Sally ringing her two sons at home to ask them whether they had heard of the song.
Despite this, it was clear by the practice stages that Sally was set to impress and she got rave reviews from superstar Tinie Tempah for her vocals.
The rapper said: “It must have been nerve-racking to be given a song that you don’t know, but she just seems to open her mouth and it comes out beautifully.”
Before the sing-off Sally said she had become close with rival Talia had and said the battle would not be a cat fight.
Coach Kylie Minogue said during the judges’ verdicts: “I would lean towards Sally, you have such clarity in your voice, you’re so transcendent.”
And fellow coach Will-i-am said: “Not that age means anything, but I don’t know what you sounded like when you were 20, but you sound amazing at 54.
He then turned to Sally’s two sons in the audience and said: “Your mum is, like, the coolest lady in the world.”
Jones put Sally through, saying her song touched him emotionally.
Illston’s James Byron will be performing during the second batch of the battle stages this Saturday night .
James sent out many messages of gratitude via his Twitter account this week,thanking people for their support ahead of the show.
James’ sister Holly Norval, of Harborough, said on Twitter: “James is on this Saturday, doing his battle stage. Very excited!”
In the blind audition stages, James won over Will-i-am with his performance of Janis Joplin’s Cry Baby and left Tom Jones wishing he had turned his chair around.