The Top 12 on The Voice season 11 performed for our votes, but that of course means one of the contestants had to be voted out. The person in that unfortunate situation was none other than Sa’Rayah.

BuddyTV took part in a conference call with Sa’Rayah, where she discussed her feelings about competing against Aaron Gibson for a second time, the differences between Miley Cyrus and Alicia Keys’ coaching styles and her plans for the future. Also, does she blame Miley for her elimination? And was she trying to send a message to America with her Top 12 song choice? Read on to find out all the details.

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Does Sa’Rayah Blame Miley for Her Elimination?

Voting for the Instant Save happens on Twitter, and because the coaches have a large number of followers, they can wield that power to get votes for their artists. Sa’Rayah believes that Miley’s influence put her at a disadvantage and she knew right away what the outcome would be.

“I felt like I knew I was leaving,” she told me. “And the reason I say that is because of who [Aaron’s] coach is. Miley Cyrus — and I’m just going to be totally open here — has a huge following. [The coaches are] telling their fans to vote for their teammate. At the point I was up against anybody on Miley’s team, I knew that I was going to be going home because although it’s a little unfair, it’s the reality of it.”

Sa’Rayah went on to say that Miley has “triple the followers that Alicia Keys has. So we were both tweeted out, but she tweeted out to 55 million people that follow her.” As of right now, Miley actually has 31.1 million followers compared to Alicia’s 24.3 million. So they aren’t that far apart, but Sa’Rayah’s argument might just be that Miley’s followers are more engaged and more willing to come out in full force.

But competing against Aaron for the Instant Save wasn’t the first time these two have gone head to head. During the Battle Rounds, back when Sa’Rayah was still on Miley’s team, she and Aaron were paired up. Miley ended up choosing Aaron, and Alicia stole Sa’Rayah.

“It was definitely like a deja vu [moment] happening,” she explained. But she added that if she was going to lose to anybody, “I wouldn’t mind it being Aaron because what people don’t know is that we really establish such a great relationship and a true love for one another. And I think we established that during the times we were up against one another for Battles. So when it was he and I standing there hand in hand, we were literally like, ‘Listen, I love you.’ And it’s like, whatever happens for me, it happens.”

Was Sa’Rayah Sending a Message to America with Her Song Choice?

Choosing “Livin’ on a Prayer” as her Top 12 song was a “collective decision” between her, Alicia and one of the executive producers. Not only did she feel like it would allow her to show everyone that she’s “capable of different things than just what they’ve seen me doing,” but she also liked the message in it and felt that it was fitting now more than ever.

“The message in it, it was dealing with a relationship where two people were at wits’ end, but they were willing to hold on because they had one another and it was all about love. And I feel like at this time in the world, and especially in America, the one thing that we have been lacking is love and that willingness to stand together and hold on. I feel like it’s necessary right now, so ‘Livin’ on a Prayer’ was the perfect song for that.”

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Why Did Sa’Rayah Have a Better Connection with Alicia Than Miley?

Sa’Rayah ended up being on two teams during her time on The Voice, first with Miley before being stolen by Alicia. When asked about their differences as coaches, Sa’Rayah said, “The purpose that Miley served for me was … that first song I was able to do with Aaron, that was something that was outside my comfort zone and I had to rise to the occasion because the song was really more flattering for Aaron’s voice.”

But she ended up having a better connection with Alicia, saying, “She saw something great in me, she saw light and love, and that’s what she’s all about. … I feel like I had a greater connection with Alicia Keys the entire time than I ever could have had with Miley because I didn’t spend enough time there. Alicia showed her interest in me in the very beginning and she stuck with that interest. She made sure that I knew she believed in me the entire time.”

What’s Next for Sa’Rayah?

I’m sure Sa’Rayah’s fans want to know what she plans on doing next. In the past, she has played with bands, but now she’s ready to work on her own solo career. “I probably will still do a few of those [band] gigs, but my main focus will be pushing my own career,” she said.

Sa’Rayah describes her style as “a pop/rock vibe, always filled with soul.” If that sounds like something you can’t wait to hear, then you’re in luck. When asked about releasing her own music, she replied, “That’s actually happening soon.”

Were you disappointed that Sa’Rayah was eliminated? Should Aaron have been cut instead? And do you think Miley’s online influence swayed the decision?

The Voice airs Mondays and Tuesdays at 8/7c on NBC. Want more news? Like our Facebook page.

(Image courtesy of NBC)

Jeff Dodge

Staff Writer, BuddyTV

Jeff Dodge, a graduate of Western Washington University, has been a TV news editor for many years and has had the chance to interview multiple reality show stars, including Randy Jackson, Nick Cannon, Heidi Klum, Mel B and John Cena.