Photo used by permission of: Christopher Benefield

Local metal/hard rock vocalist Chris Benefield is auditioning for "The Voice" in Nashville next month.

The Shreveport singer has been in many bands throughout the years, but is best known from Seasons of Pain, River Blindness and his current band, Life on Ceres.

"Bene" (what his friends call him) told me his daughter really was the one who encouraged him to audition, but his Life on Ceres bandmates and day job boss also urged him to go for it. He's been offered $1,000 just to audition.

Hopefully that "metal/hard rock" label won't color judges' opinions of Benefield. I met Chris during his River Blindness days, when his band was a regular guest on the 99X Homegrown show, and I really enjoyed his onstage energy. But it was an acoustic show that impressed me the most. That's when I truly noticed he could sing as well as scream and growl. It made me appreciate what he does so much more.

Will the judges be able to handle him? Will the "metal/hard rock" label color judges' opinions? We'll just have to wait and see.

Chris said that after this Friday's Life on Ceres show in Dallas (Jan. 31), he'll be headed to Nashville, Tennessee for his Feb. 2 audition.

Shreveport is definitely pulling for Benefield, who would be the latest native talent to make his mark on the national stage.

We'll keep you updated on his progress.