Aiming higher

Aiming higher
The Voice season five winner Tessanne Chin.

UNITED STATES - The Voice may have an Outstanding Reality Competition Program Emmy to its name, but it still doesn't have a breakout star.

Jamaican singer Tessanne Chin is hoping to change all that.

This season five winner, who is part Chinese, Cherokee, English and African, is hard at work on her debut album.

Her secret weapon? Celebrity friends and fans like Shaggy and Sean Paul.

"There's been a whole range of producers and writers, and the music that's been coming out (of the studio) - there are some pretty powerful songs," Chin, 28, told M over the phone from New York, where she is working on her post-win album with Shaggy.

It was the Jamaican-American star behind hits like Boombastic who urged her to join the US reality singing show, where she landed on celebrity coach Adam Levine's team.

Chin, already an established name in Jamaica with more than half a dozen singles and an album to her name, was encouraged to expand her horizons.

"I was very afraid," she said of joining The Voice. "It was something very different from what I had done, but my friends and fans in Jamaica really supported me.

"It was like a national stir in Jamaica. And the entire diaspora came together to support me, so going home after that was an amazing experience."

The sixth and current season of The Voice, which features returning guest judges Levine, Shakira, Usher and Blake Shelton, airs on Sundays at 8.10pm on AXN (StarHub Ch 511), in the same week as the US telecast.

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