‘The Voice’: Ali Caldwell Steals Season 11 Premiere With “Dangerous Woman”

Caila Ball-Dionne | September 20, 2016 10:39 am

It may have just scored another Emmy win on Sunday, but The Voice is still shaking things up to avoid a case of Idol-itis. Veteran coaches Adam Levine and Blake Shelton, who – in all likelihood – are both looking into surgical options for permanent red chair attachment, were joined on Monday (September 19) evening by some new blood for Season 11. Alicia Keys and Miley Cyrus made their Voice debuts, thus marking the first season with two female coaches on the panel at the same time. How revolutionary.

Despite the terrifying reality of being positively overrun by strong women (one of whom wasn’t even wearing makeup! Faint!), the show managed to go on. Here’s who made it through the Blind Auditions on night one:

Jason Warrior, 21 — Illinois

First up is soul singer Jason Warrior, who sings Stevie Wonder’s “Living For The City.” Adam turns around first for his powerful voice, followed by Alicia. It’s a little surprising that Jason’s huge range didn’t get a four-chair turn, but Carson Daly would just spin that as a sign that Season 11 will be full of surprises!

“I understand the odds are really against me,” says Adam. “I want to help you be better in every aspect that you do.”

“I’m super proud of you,” says Alicia. “I just heard all of that energy and all of that soul.”

The crowd, Miley, Blake and common sense are all in Alicia’s corner, so it’s no surprise when Jason makes it official and join team Alicia.

Dave Moisan, 23 – New York

It seems like Dave Moisan’scoach selection has been determined before he even steps on stage. He got his inspiration to sing from attending a Maroon 5 concert in college, during which he actually went backstage and met Adam. He even has the photo evidence in his pocket. The Levine-spiration is clear in the crazy falsettos throughout his stripped down performance of sMarcy Playground’s “Sex And Candy” (throwback!), which earns turns from all four coaches.

“Falsetto is hard and you just have this way of getting it there, and it’s seamless and perfectly on key but it’s also soulful and smooth,” raves Adam.

“You’re incredible. I don’t know what else I can say knowing you’re in Adam’s fan club,” says Blake.

“I don’t think we should always go with the most obvious decision. In this world there’s already one Adam Levine. We don’t need two,” says Miley. Burn.

“I have that knack of bringing a soulful experience into the real world where you can really feel it. I feel like Adam’s is not as deeply rooted as mine,” says Alicia. Double burn!

Despite literally having a photo of Adam in his back pocket, Dave picks Alicia. If you can’t win someone who carries around a picture of you, who can you win?

Courtnie Ramirez, 17 – Texas

Small town girl Courtnie Ramirezgets a double vote of girl power when Alicia and Miley turn around for her performance of Jessie J’s “Mamma Knows Best.” Her raspy voice is powerful, and gives off some major jazz singer vibes that both ladies really want on their teams.

“You have all this crazy range,” says Miley. “You have like a rocker vibe.”

“Your voice was immediate personality. It woke me up. It was alive,” says Alicia.

After minimal debate, Courtnie becomes the first member of Team Miley.

Sundance Head, 37 – Texas

Once you know that Sundance Head is the name of a person, it will probably come as no shock that this person braids his beard. If The Voice teaches us anything — besides how grating the word “bromance” can get — it’s that you can’t judge a book by its cover…until at least the live playoffs. Sundance gives a powerful and growling performance of Otis Redding’s “I’ve Been Loving You Too Long,” and gets the attention of veterans Adam and Blake.

“There is something so different about you,” says Blake.

“What the hell are you? That’s the best part about you,” says Adam.

After Adam — who is about to be a dad in a matter of days — scares Sundance’s kids off the stage, Sundance picks Blake.

Ali Caldwell – 28 – New York

Ali Caldwell is no stranger to the stage, having performed extensively in Moscow (go figure), plus having opened up stateside for Patti LaBelle and Boyz II Men as part of girl group Exhale. Her experience and confidence comes out in her performance of Ariana Grande’s “Dangerous Woman, which gets a four-chair turn.

“I won the show with Alicia’s ex-backup singer, Jermaine Paul,” offers Blake, which comes out as more of an endorsement for Alicia than himself.

“I’m about to win Season 11 with this girl,” says Miley. “I’d like to find some songs that no one would expect for you to sing.”

“I just want Ali to know that I see all the hard work that you’ve put in,” says Alicia. “No matter what, you are so special.”

“I am so blown away,” says Adam. “My entire season hinges on whether or not I have you on my team.”

It’s unfortunate that your season was hinging on this, Adam, because Ali joins Team Miley. Better luck in Season 12.

Riley Elmore, 16 – Illinois

Sixteen-year-old Riley has the look and sound of a ’50s crooner, or as Blake Shelton will put it, Michael Buble. The jazz music enthusiast croons Frank Sinatra’s “The Way You Look Tonight,” and his smooth, controlled voice earns turns from Adam and Blake.

“If I could come back as somebody, I would come back as Dean Martin,” says Blake, taking the reincarnation approach. “I know Michael Buble.”

“There were moments that were brilliant, and I want to make every moment brilliant,” says Adam, who then gets on stage and performs with Riley.

It’s pretty tough to turn down a Grammy winner who performs with you for the “I know Michael Buble” appeal, so Riley picks Adam.

Dana Harper, 25 – Texas

Dana Harper’s dad is former NBA player Derek Harper, but her talent on the stage definitely outshines her talent on the course. Dana sings a down-tempo version of Nick Jonas’ “Jealous,” and – despite falling out of the pocket a bit — she earns turns from Blake, Alicia and Adam.

“There was magnificent control in your voice, and it’s so warm too,” says Alicia, who adds, “You have such a beautiful tone.”

“I felt like she’s got everything in her arsenal,” adds Adam.

“What no girl, I think, has – maybe anywhere – is that lower area that they can go and explore. It’s something that I think you should use to your advantage,” says Blake.

Aiming for the unexpected, the pop singer picks country coach Blake, and it’s unclear who is more shocked: Alicia or Blake.

Gabe Broussard – 15 – Louisiana

With admittedly limited experience with the ladies, young Gabe channels what he thinks having a girlfriend would be like to get emotion in his performance. While that approach sounds incredibly awkward, it actually works for him. Gabe sings “Lonely Night In Georgia” by Marc Broussard (no relation), and his emotional performance earns turns from Blake and Miley.

“You have an amazing voice, and you don’t sound 15. You feel like you’ve lived a lot of life and have a lot of story in your voice,” says Miley.

“You sounded like such a freakin’ stud. That’s the only way I know how to say it,” says aspiring cool dad Blake. “You’re the guy that all of us wait to hear.”

Cool dad vibes for the win: Gabe picks Blake.

Christian Cuevas, 20 – Florida

Closing out the night is Christian Cuevas, a soulful singer who sings Michael Bolton’s “How Am I Supposed To Live Without You.” It’s got everything needed for a  quintessential four-chair turn-worthy performance: a ballad, a strong voice, soaring high notes and so much emotion – but Miley holds out. Christian is left to choose between Blake, Adam and Alicia.

“I am absolutely hypnotized by this guy’s personality that’s coming through,” says Blake. “I’m a fan.”

“I really felt you,” says Alicia. “You either got it or you don’t got it, and you got it.”

“The emotional sincere way that you were singing, and the thick, incredible quality that filled the whole room? I couldn’t be more excited,” says Adam.

Despite how excited Adam was about Christian, Christian was far more excited about another coach, and joins Team Alicia.

The Blind Auditions continue tonight, which will include a “big surprise” from Miley (according to perpetual hype man Carson Daly). We shall see what the new coach pulls out of her arsenal (please let it be a wrecking ball!), and also get a glimpse of more Season 11 talent.