No I cannot forget where it is that I come from
I cannot forget the people who love me
Yeah, I can be myself here in this small town
And people let me be just what I want to be

— “Small Town,” John Cougar Mellencamp

From Day 1 on his whirlwind journey through NBC’s “The Voice,” Britton Buchanan has made it known to millions — more than anyone else — where he’s from.

He went next level with his fondness for Sanford, North Carolina, Monday night by singing about it during the pentultimate performance on The Voice’s Top 12 show. “Small Town” by John Cougar Mellencamp was the song Britton hinted at on Twitter in the days leading up to his fifth performance.

And whether you like Mellencamp or not, you can’t deny that Britton’s performance Monday night was energetic. His mannerisms — little moments where he interacts with his audience or offers a knowing smile — have played just as much a part in his success on the show as his overall talent. Many consider him a lock to advance another week (many others have him penciled in for the finals … even though that’s another month away), and Britton did nothing Monday night to change that mindset. He’s a fan favorite, and that’s all that matters in these live shows.

Following his performance, Kelly Clarkson called Britton “the coolest one here” and said he was born to have a guitar in his hand. His coach, Alicia Keys, once again thanked judge Blake Shelton for blocking Adam Levine from getting Britton in Episode 1. Then she redirected the focus on Britton.

“You don’t need this stage,” she told him. “You don’t need anybody else. Your destiny is to be here. I can just feel America rooting for you. You belong here, and all we wan to do is see you play. We’ve watched you bloom, and you’re going to keep blossoming.”

As for the other 11 contestants, Monday night was a mixed bag. Christiana Danielle and Kyla Jade were standouts while the two Jackies — Foster and Verna — were lackluster.

Only one contestant will be eliminated tomorrow night (the bottom two will sing for their lives), so we’re willing to bet our LLC that Britton returns next week. Still, we’ll have another recap Tuesday either way. See you then.

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