Well that didn’t take long! Tuesday was only the second night of the Blind Auditions on The Voice, and the initial love fest has already given way to some solid bickering among the coaches. There’s an early (and heavily-produced) three-against-one battle forming, pitting reigning champ Blake Shelton against the combined forces of Adam Levine, Christina Aguilera and Cee Lo.
Bromance, shmomance, right Adam? All’s fair in love and reality singing competitions. The three other coaches aligning against him aside, Blake proved to be his own worst enemy in night two of the Blind Auditions. While his awkward comments were pure entertainment for those who love watching uncomfortable moments unravel, they were also red flags for a few contestants who took a sharp left turn away from the country coach to, well, just about anyone else with a filter. Here’s how that went down.
Jacquie Lee – 16, New Jersey
Other than Jacquie Lee’s blatant misspelling of her first name and gleeful declaration that some people call her home state “Joy-sie,” she’s cute as a button, and performs for cancer patients in her spare time. Her pick of Amy Winehouse‘s “Back To Black,” is unexpected, and there’s a bit of a disconnect between her sweet voice and the dark lyrics. Christina and Blake turn around to duke it out over her.
You would think Blake would be a shoe-in to coach the Danielle Bradbury-esque singer, but his appeal includes the unintentionally creepy “I specialize in 16-year-old girls [long pause where everyone involved gets really uncomfortable] winning the show.” Christina swoops in for the win by convincing Jacquie that she is hungry for the win and not a subject on To Catch A Predator.
Barry Black – 27, American Samoa
Up until Barry Black’s performance, The Voice was missing one key element: a contestant who can make horn noises with his mouth. It lacks this no more, now that the American Samoa native can — and does — perform a mean mouth horn. Adam turns around early in Barry’s performance of Bobby Caldwell’s “What You Won’t Do For Love” out of pure curiosity. Blake joins him, and although Christina fans herself of the pure hotness of his soulful voice, she and Cee Lo neglect to join them.
When Adam marvels at what on earth went on with the mouth horn situation, Blake points out, “I turned around because I think he’s a great artist, Adam.” Blake just about had him with this, until he tries to relate to Barry’s heritage with, “I always ask for Samoa. I need some more-a right now.”
This would have been a great opportunity for an epic mic drop, but Barry instead joins Team Adam. Blake’s ability to repel contestants with one sentence: 2, Blake: 0.
Destinee Quinn – 20, Arizona
At first glance, you would guess that Destinee Quinn would be eaten alive by Hell’s Angels, and that she is perhaps the last person who would share a stage with Alice Cooper. Wrong on both accounts, Judgey Wudgey: the country singer not only performs regularly at biker bars, but won Alice Cooper’s Christmas Pudding Talent Search when she was 16. The former shock rocker even sends her a video message that manages to be sweet, creepy and branded all at the same time!
Destinee performs Dixie Chicks’ “Cowboy Take Me Away,” and even though she sounds more show-off karaoke than superstar, Christina and Cee Lo turn for her. Cee Lo is mesmerized by her looks, telling Destinee, “I’m basking in the image of such beauty.”
Christina keeps the focus on her voice (looks like someone read the rules of the show), and compliments her powerhouse vocals. Destinee joins Team Christina, and has Blake ready and waiting for a Battle Round steal.
Cole Vosbury – 22, Lousiana
If Cole Vosbury’s appearance on The Voice shows the world anything, it’s that his grandmother, Nita Lynn, needs her own reality show. The feisty senior toured with Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis, and proudly tells Carson Daly that her claim to fame is being the only girl who turned down Elvis. Does Bravo have a slot open for The Real Grandmothers Of Shreveport?
Anyway, Cole is much more forgettable than Nana Nita, and his lackluster performance of Ja’net Dubois‘ “Movin’ On Up” (yes, the Jeffersons theme song) gets only Cee Lo’s attention. Cee Lo hears a “great balance of country and soul,” from Cole’s pitchy growl. He might have joined Team Cee Lo, but Cole’s only real shot for long term success is if Nana Nita sings backup.
Holly Henry – 19, Minnesota
Shy waitress Holly Henry is a singer-songwriter, but one who doesn’t really love the idea of performing in public. The Voice, therefore, was a natural choice for her. Should she advance, the multi-talented singer also plays the guitar, piano and banjo, which could make for interesting performances down the line.
Holly’s silky voice has Blake after just one word of Coldplay’s “The Scientist,” followed by Adam and Cee Lo, and, at the last second, Christina.
“Because of you, I’m officially excited about Season 5!” Blake declares. He then drops the Miranda Lambert card out of nowhere. We get it: your wife is always on your mind and we shouldn’t trust the tabloids.
Cee Lo chimes in, telling Holly, “You have a voice that deserves to be acknowledged.”
Christina tries to convince her that only a fellow woman can understand her, but Holly is already sold on Blake.
Austin Jenckes – 25, Washington
“Holy crap balls of America!” is Blake’s non-sensical response to country rocker Austin Jenckes’s performance. Indeed, most covers of Lynyrd Skynyrd would elicit similar responses from self-proclaimed rednecks, but Austin’s rendition of “Simple Man” stands out from your typical dive bar cover band’s.
Along with Blake, Cee Lo turns around when Austin hits some killer high notes. “You’ve got soul power,” Cee Lo tells him.
Soul power is nice, but holly crap balls of America wins the day. Austin joins Team Blake.
E.G. Daily – 51, California
E.G. Daily appears well into the second hour of Tuesday’s Blind Auditions, exactly when a random burst of nostalgia is needed to perk up coaches and audiences alike. Real talk: not only was she the voice of Tommy Pickles on Rugrats and Buttercup on The Powerpuff Girls, but she was Dottie in Pee Wee’s Big Adventure!
One could argue that life has peaked many times over already for Daily, but this is called The Voice, not The Voiceover, so E.G. is free to pursue success in yet another entertainment career.
E.G. sings Faith Hill‘s “Breathe” with more rasp than was ever intended for the song. She really goes for those high notes, and hits a good half of them. Undaunted by the missed notes, both Blake and Cee Lo turn around.
“You even did a falsetto with a rasp in it,” Blake notes.
“I like it when rasp is someone’s reality, not just them struggling to go someplace higher,” Cee Lo says, adding, “You reminded me of Rod Stewart.”
Clearly cued by a producer, Christina and Cee Lo prompt E.G. to bring up her Pee Wee and voiceover past, and just goes nuts for it. Wanting to be appreciated for her voice, and not Tommy Pickles’, E.G. picks Blake.
Jonny Gray – 29, Texas
Jonny Gray has his heart set on Adam Levine’s team even before he hits the stage. Back in the early ’00s when he was deployed in the Middle East, Jonny listened to Maroon 5‘s then-recently-released Songs About Jane, which got him through some dark times. Unlike most contestants, he’d rather not talk about said dark times, and just wants to sing.
The military police veteran (who, incidentally, grew his hair long and is now rocking a hippie look) performs The Killers’ “All These Things I’ve Done,” firmly declaring, “I’ve got soul but I’m not a soldier.”
Both Cee Lo and Adam turn their chairs. Cee Lo says all the right things, likening Jonny to Stevie Nicks and Eddie Vedder. Adam, on the other hand, gives Jonny approximately zero quality reasons to join his team. In a surprise move, Jonny drops his pre-performance intentions and joins Team Cee Lo. Fight on, Cee Lo!
Tessanne Chin – 28, Jamaica
Growing up in Jamaica and attending school in England, Tessanne Chin listened to a lot of reggae, Papa Roach and System Of A Down, and did back-up for music legend Jimmy Cliff. What that combination of influences will produce is deeply intriguing.
The alternative and reggae influences don’t come through in Tessanne’s performance of Pink‘s “Try,” but her absolute powerhouse voice sure does. All four coaches spin around early in the song.
“You sound like a grown woman!” Cee Lo declares.
“You could easily win The Voice this year,” Adam promises the second contestant of the week.
“I’m so fascinated by you because you’ve been to Jamaica,” Blake says, adding, “But have you been to the country?” This counts as Blake’s third self-produced loss of the evening.
Christina also fights for the “unbelievably talented vocalist,” but Tessanne ultimately chooses Adam. Even his tattoos are psyched!
The coaches continue filling their teams with four more hours of Blind Auditions next Monday and Tuesday. Any early favorites from this week?