Malik Heard, season 10 contestant of The Voice and a Texas A&M University-Commerce music student, performed at the college Friday.
Being born in Dallas to an athletic family, Heard learned as he matured that music was his true passion.
"I started singing when I was about 8 years old," Heard said. "By the time I was in the sixth grade, I knew music was what I wanted to do with my life."
At Sachase Hgh School, Heard and his soulful tenor voice made the prestigious Texas All-State Choir, his senior year.
"While I was in high school I took voice lessons from Dr. Jennifer Glidden," Heard said. "She helped train me in a more classical style and I believe it helped me overall."
Glidden is now an assistant professor of music, voice and opera at A&M-Commerce, which added more incentive of drawing Heard to the Commerce campus.
"I head attended a summer camp there before my senior year and I loved it," Heard said. "I knew that Commerce was where I wanted to go."
Heard recently was called to L.A. to perform on the NBC show The Voice.
"I actually got the call to fly out to L.A. while I was at [college] orientation," he said. "I can't even describe how amazing it felt. I was gonna give it my all."
His audition went well and he was ready for his appearance in front of the four judges: Adam Levine, Blake Shelton, Christina Aquilera, and Pharrell Williams. Heard earned praise from Aquilera and Williams, and he made the decision to go with Aquilera as his coach.
Next, Heard was paired with Bryan Bautista in a sing-off to their rendition of the James Brown hit, "It's a Man's World." Unfortunately Heard lost the sing-off but he was saved by Judge Pharrell Williams, who wanted to add Heard to his team.
"I got lots of great advice from both of my coaches," Heard said.
Though he later was eliminated in the knockout round, Heard still cherishes the experience. Now back in school and settling into the normal routine of a college student, Heard performed Friday at Finney Concert Hall to raise money for vocal students to attend competitions across the state and region.
"I'm excited to perform for the community and my peers," he said.