Fort Wayne’s Addison Agen plans to pursue music career in 2018

Addison Agen, 16, of Fort Wayne, plans to pursue a career as a music artist after her runner-up finish last month on the TV show "The Voice." (Photo by Tyler Golden/NBC)

Life is going to change in a big way in 2018 for Addison Agen.

Trying to build on the momentum of her runner-up finish Dec. 19 on “The Voice” television show, the 16-year-old Fort Wayne vocal sensation plans to pursue her dream of becoming a full-time music artist.

That means:

• She will take high school classes online this semester and possibly next year.

• She will hire a team of people to manage her music career.

• She will work on completing her second album of music, with a goal of releasing it in the latter half of the year.

• She hopes to go out on concert tour this summer.

Addison talked about those topics and more during a phone interview Tuesday morning with News-Sentinel.com.

One big factor in her plans will be contract restrictions on her still in place from “The Voice,” she said. She doesn’t face as many contract requirements as season winner Chloe Kohanski — or for as long as Kohanski — but Addison and her family still are trying to sort out what she can and can’t do while “The Voice” contract remains in effect. They hope to figure that out today.

For example, contract restrictions could impact what she can sing at her Welcome Home concerts Jan. 21 at the Embassy Theatre, she said.

If the contract allows it, Addison said she’d like to sing about 10 songs she performed on “The Voice.” She also will perform a few songs from her first album, “New Places,” which she released at age 13, and a few new songs that likely will be part of her upcoming second album.

Addison said her success on “The Voice” gave her a sampling of what life is like for a major music artist, and she’s ready to pursue it.

“I love the route I’m going in already,” she said.

Being “The Voice” runner-up will give her more control over the path she takes in music than if she had won, she said, and she’s pleased about that. Kohanski had to sign a recording contract with Universal Music Group.

Addison said she has enjoyed meeting new people because of “The Voice,” and she loves talking with people who are interested in music. She’s excited about interacting in the future with fans at performances and events.

Her “The Voice” performances appealed to both young people and those of older generations. She believes her age attracted young people, and singing songs on the show from a generation or two ago appealed to older folks.

Addison, who is a junior at Concordia Lutheran High School, said she plans to take high school classes online this semester to finish out the school year. She may do the same next year.

She said she knows how to make online school work — she was homeschooled before attending Concordia Lutheran High School and had to take some online classes this past semester while competing on “The Voice.”

Musically, one of her top priorities now is hiring a management team to support her singing career, she said. That likely will include a manager, publicist, booking agent and tour manager. She hopes to have all of them in place within six months.

Addison believes her celebrity coach on “The Voice,” Adam Levine of pop music group Maroon 5, also will be a mentor as she goes forward with a music career. “The Voice” contract regulates that relationship somewhat in the short term, she said, but she can contact him with questions until he is free to get more involved.

“He is extremely loyal and honest,” she said. “He said he was planning on being a part of this (her career),” and Addison believes Levine will be.

Levine worked closely with her on selecting the songs she sang on “The Voice,” Addison said. That included Levine finding the song “Tennessee Rain” for her to sing as an original song on the final performance show of the season.

Addison’s rendition of the song, which was written by longtime musician and songwriter Patty Griffin, shot up to No. 1 on the iTunes Top 200 Songs chart after the show.

Addison wanted to do a song she had written herself, and she and Levine discussed that and pushed for it, she said. They had to figure out how to build more power into her song, however, she said.

With only one week to prepare two solos and a duet for the performance finale, they decided it would work best to go with “Tennessee Rain,” she said.

Regarding her songwriting, Addison had started work on recording songs for her second album before the knockout round on “The Voice.” She worked with a small local recording studio, but it possibly now may be a smart decision to record the album using the state-of-the-art studios at Sweetwater in Fort Wayne, she said.

She hopes to release the album within six months to a year, she said.

Addison wants to go out on a regional concert tour this summer. But the time she gets her management team in place, “it will be summer, and people like to go to concerts,” she said.

There also is a possibility she could tour as an opening performer for a big-name act, “possibly one of the people I’ve looked up to my entire life,” she said. It’s too early in that discussion to share any more details, she added.

In the coming weeks and months, Addison also will work on finding a balance between how she wants to appear on stage and how people saw her on “The Voice.”

Not known for wearing a lot of makeup beforehand, she had to get more made up for performing on TV on “The Voice,” she said.

She had input on all of the clothing she wore on the show, and she said the looks on the show were just “more extravagant” versions of how she may have dressed her own.

“It makes a full package,” she said of wardrobe and make-up decisions.

“I did grow so much on “The Voice” — in every way,” she said.


WHAT: Addison Agen, who finished runner-up in mid-December on “The Voice” vocal talent competition TV show, will perform two Welcome Home concerts.

WHEN: 4:30 and 8 p.m. Jan. 21

WHERE: Embassy Theatre, 125 W. Jefferson Blvd.

COST: $10 and $25. The 4:30 p.m. show is sold out. Tickets for the 8 p.m. show go on sale at 10 a.m. Thursday at the Embassy box office, ticketmaster.com and 1-800-745-3000.


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