When it comes to competing on a reality show, everybody knows that the songs you choose are often just as important as how you sing them.
The craze of reality singing shows all started with American Idol, and that show demonstrated just how effective a good song choice could be. Still, other shows like The Voice have sprung up to take its place—but the same principle lives on.
Although it sometimes makes sense to pick a pop song or a power ballad to showcase your voice, other times a more nostalgic throwback makes more sense.
And that was certainly the case in this performance.
For those who haven’t watched The Voice, the way it works is relatively simple—though it’s different from other shows.
On each episode, contestants come out and appear before a panel of judges who have their backs turned. In these “blind auditions,” the judges can hit their buzzers to turn around if they like how the person on stage is singing.
After that, they all compete to win that person onto their team. That’s because on each season, there’s a winning contestant and a winning vocal coach!
For those reasons and others, it’s important to do something that gets some attention.
The contestant in this clip is Oma Jali, and she appeared on the 2016 season of The Voice of France.
As she stepped out, the backing music started playing and she started singing the iconic intro lyrics: “I want my MTV…” For those who don’t know, the song she chose was “Money For Nothing” by Dire Straits, one of the biggest rock hits of the ‘80s!
Still, the original was a guitar-heavy song that had a relatively muted vocal line behind it. Instead, Jali decides to amp the song up a notch.
And she even brings her own updated lyrics to it for the modern era!
Almost immediately, the judges know they’re dealing with something special.
Before long, the judges are climbing up on their chairs with excitement. A moment later, she gets two buzzers!
As it turns out, the performance was far more of a star-making performance than it was a simple audition… and before long, she has yet another judge turning around. At the very end, Jali hits one last enormous high note and keeps it sustaining for a long time. When it’s finally over, she takes a bow.
After that, the audience and the judges give her a huge round of applause!
Since the clip went online, it has earned itself some seven million views… and it’s easy to see why that is.
Though there are plenty of ways to stand out on a show like this, picking a song that everybody loves and that nobody expects is a good place to start.
Though it’s easy to show the power of your voice by picking a safe, recognizable pop song, Jali decided to take a creative risk—and she took it even further by changing up the style and the lyrics. Although not everybody loves the ‘80s equally, any Dire Straits fans out there are sure to love this tribute!
Congratulations to Oma Jali on the awesome performance! Be sure to check out the whole thing in the link below:
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