Bullied as a kid, this “Voice” star is now getting the last laugh Photo by Brad Barket/Getty Images for TIDAL
Danielle Bradbery attends TIDAL X: 1015 on October 15, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Brad Barket/Getty Images for TIDAL)

When Danielle Bradbery auditioned for “The Voice” in 2013, she turned three judges’ chairs (including Blake Shelton’s) with her performance of Taylor Swift’s “Mean.” Turns out, it was personal.

“I think the reason why they pushed that song towards me to audition with is because I did get made fun of,” Danielle, now 21, told Rare Country during a recent interview in Houston. “I had really crooked teeth, and, just, school kids can be really mean, so it kind of worked out perfectly.”

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Danielle got the last laugh though. Not only did she go on to win the fourth season of “The Voice,” she’s also been honing her songwriting chops, and says her bulling experience has definitely found its way into her music.

“Now that I’m getting to write, there’s definitely some things I include in there from people that have been disrespectful … and it makes for a good song,” she adds with a giggle. “I’m like, ‘OK, I’ll write about this real quick.’ ”

Taylor would likely approve, as she reportedly wrote “Mean” as a response to a critic.

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Danielle penned seven of the 10 songs on her upcoming sophomore album, “I Don’t Believe We’ve Met,” which will be available Dec. 1.


Phyllis Stark is a Nashville-based entertainment journalist who has been reporting extensively on country music (and loving every moment of it) for more than two decades.
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