Welcome back for part 6 of The Voice Blind Auditions. And we’re doing things a little different tonight. Due to various technical issues, this is a recap an not a live blog. We’ll be back tomorrow night with our regularly scheduled live blog…
Adam Levine, Blake Shelton, Gwen Stefani and Alicia Keys are sitting in the big red chairs this cycle, while Carson Daly returns to host.
Kenny P. – 30 – Cleveland OH – Hello It’s Me by Todd Rundgren – Kenny and his wife live in a tiny house in Nashville OH. They built it themselves. They’ve got two dogs. The dwelling is like a glorified trailer. Kenny comes from a musical family he’s been in rock bands, punk bands etc. Now he plays mostly country music. He can’t play tips for the rest of his life! So here he is at The Voice. His wife is super-supportive. He sings “Hello It’s Me” by Todd Rundgren and it’s a pretty straightforward cover. There’s a bit of a twang in his voice, and that’s about as country as it gets. It’s an interesting song choice though. Nobody turns right away. Gwen is first. He hits some big notes and Blake turns. Blake is impressed by his power…and his moustache. “I play a lot more country than I used to” says Kenny. “So do I” quips Gwen. “Gwen doesn’t care about you!” says Blake. Gwen calls him “theatrical.” Which….uhm. That’s a stretch. Nevertheless Kenny chooses Team Gwen. Really? – Download at iTunes
Tonight’s running Adam Levine Stripey Sweater Joke: Blake says he looks like the Hamburgler in that outfit. Gwen buys him a Hamburgler-like hat to compliment the look.
Enid Ortiz – 25 – Tampa FL – All I Ask by Adele – She’s a medical assistance in a doctor’s office. She plays in a funk band, but is ready to take her career to a bigger stage. She grew up with the skin condition Micheal Jackson had, Vitiligo. Needless to say, it was tough on her self-esteem. Kids called her a “cow.” She spent time in her room writing music. But now, she’s engaged to a wonderful guy. Yay. Her tone is gorgeous, as is her lower register. When she hits the big notes in the chorus…still no chairs? She’s got great control and intonation. Finally, Blake turns. “OMG You’re a Jerk!” Gwen yells. I’m not sure what’s going on. Oh, Blake acted as if he didn’t like it, so Gwen didn’t push her button. Maybe really on your own instincts girl? Enid tells Alicia she’s her “spirit animal.” But she did not turn for you. Sads. Alicia gives her a consolation pep talk. – Enid is on Team Blake – Download at iTunes
RJ Collins – 18 – Chicago IL – Purpose by Justin Bieber – He works at Guitar Center. It’s perfect for him! He comes from a family of self-taught musicians. His older brother encouraged him to sing. He was killed by police in 2009. No details on that. His death motivated to pursue his dreams. He’s been doing gigs here and there since. He wants to be a positive role model for his troubled city, Chicago. Adam turns immediately. It’s a heartfelt performance, but nobody else is moved to turn….until he hits a pure, clear note in the chorus. Alicia hits her button, much to Adam’s chagrin. Adam pulls out his stock line “I think you could win The Voice!” He does have a lovely, soulful voice. “I love you!” RJ says to Gwen. She appreciates his grateful attitude. “I’m ready for magic!” gushes Gwen. “You’re soul comes through your music.” Adam is sunk. Blake pimps for Alicia. “We need beautiful black men like you,” says Alicia. It’s all over. “Before you don’t choose me, choose me,” says Adam. And of course, RJ chooses Team Alicia – Download at iTunes
Austin Tyler Jones – 27 – Columbia TN – Allison by Elvis Costello – His mother pushed him into music and he resisted initially. He turned his attention to football, but he was too small. He manages two coffee shops by day. He’s a family man. He met his wife in 8th grade. They dated his senior year in high school. He played ever week in church. Family life makes it tough to pursue his dream. Reality show singer never cover Elvis. I wonder if he refuses to clear songs or he’s just not a hot item? He should be. He accompanies himself on guitar. Gwen seems impressed with his pleasant performance. It’s OK, but there isn’t much verve in the performance. He’s tentative and a little pitchy. Too bad. He has great taste in music! Blake felt he lacked a sense of urgency. “It’s so nice to hear an Elvis Costello song,” says Adam. Indeed. – No Turns
T-Soul – 29 – Richmond VA – Take Me To the River by Al Green – His real name is Terry. Good to know? He sang with a gospel choir in college and travelled all over the world. He’s gone viral on Youtube. Played at the Apollo, at Howard University in Europe. He’s made “T soldiers” all over the world. His parents wear “T-Soul” t shirts. He’s an entrepreneur. The first song he ever played was “Fallin'” by Alicia Keys. He’s hoping to be “T-Soul” for life. And hopefully that’s the end to referring to himself in the third person. He’s got a James Brown vibe right off the bat. Adam and Blake turn immediately This song has been covered a lot, but he manages to make it his own. He ends a with a little jazz improvisation, and still no turn from Alicia. Adam notes that Blake spent the whole time staring at Alicia’s team. He begs T-Soul to be on his team. Blake calls his speaking voice “manly…it’s got all the herbs and spices.” OK then. Alicia pitches for Adam. “I think he would get behind you fully.” Gwen of course, sticks up for her man. T-Soul chooses TeamBlake. Oh. He goes for the winningest coach. Blake calls soul “one of my specialties.” If you say so, dude. – Download at iTunes
Dang. MONTAGES. But they get separate videos with full performances, so YAY? Actually, it’s a GREAT idea. At least montaged singers receive some exposure during the blinds.
Andrea Thomas – Baby, Now that I’ve Found You by The Foundation/Alison Krauss – She sang backup for Carrie Underwood! Nice tone. Only Blake turns. One turn performances tend to get montaged, which proves these segments are all about the coaches. Gwen’s hand hovers over her button…but no turn. – Team Blake – Download at iTunes
Davina Leone – Cheap Thrills by Sia – Carson describes her as a “YouTube success” It takes awhile for Gwen to turn. She’s got a decent voice! Nice tone, pitch on point, good energy. – Team Gwen Download at iTunes
Hanna Eyre – Blank Space by Taylor Swift – 15 – Laguna Nigel CA – Her dad signed her up for The Voice. She wasn’t casted. She and her dad actually waited in line at open audition. She’s the oldest of four kids, She tries hard to be a role model. She’s been playing piano since the age of 5. She teaches piano now. Singing and songwriting is her real passion. She screams Team Gwen, doesn’t she? She’s very poised for a 15 year old. Adam turns first. BIG smile from Hanna. Blake and Gwen are next. “You are so cute!” says Adam. “I’m gonna claw and I’m going to fight.” Adam predicts Blake will bring up his season 4 winner Danielle Bradbery. She’s EXACTLY what Gwen was looking for today “I clearly know what you want to do.” she says. Blake compliments her range and power. “It’s just the tip of the iceberg” he says. Gwen accuses Blake of mansplaining. Ohh. This one is clifhanger. After the break, Hanna Chooses Team Adam. Huh. I thought she’d choose Gwen or Blake. Download at iTunes
Casey Jamerson – 26 – Pendleton IN – Shadows of the Night by Pat Benatar – She loves music–but also sports! She did gymnastics and cheerleading. Her father was a baseball player. After high school she was given a “full ride” to Indiana University to play softball, but after a year, she realized it was not for her. Music was her real passion. Now she’s leather girl. She’s been on Broadway–an original cast member of “Bringing on the Musical.” Anybody actually hear of that? But she’s really a rock n roll singer at heart. She’s hoping for a turn from Team Gwen. She loves her fashion sense. Maybe Gwen will design a cow outfit for her. She’s a little screamy. At one point, Gwen’s eyebrows shoot up in surprise. She has some weird phrasing. She’s a little posery in with her leather and rock growls. Gwen regrets not turning. Alicia suggests she add some dynamics to her performance. She was on 11 the whole time. Gwen asks her to come back. In the end, No Turns.
Hunter Plake – 20 – Baton Rouge LA – Carry On by .fun – He’s been watching The Voice forever. He sent a tape in and got a call. He’s married. Yikes. The couple were victims of the recent flood. They lost their home and their car. His wife gets teary talking about it. Right now, they live with his parents. He’s never sung outside of church. Well, that explains the young marriage. Gwen turns first. He’s got some pitch problems and he’s not bringing much new to the song. He has a nice range, though. Adam is singing along…but no turn. Alicia pushes her button at the last minute. Adam LOVES the song choice and notes the range in the song is “crazy.” Alicia calls his tone “unique.” She doesn’t have anyone like him on her team! Gwen really relates to him, she says. Alicia’s pitch is much better. And Hunter Chooses Team Alicia – Download at iTunes
Nala Price – 17 – Sebring FL – Send My Love (To Your New Lover) by Adele – Where she comes from “there’s a lot of cows.” During childhood, her mom entered her in talent competition. STAGE MOM! Adam and Gwen turn right away. She’s a very polished singer. Definitely a talent show kid. She’s got a unique tone, but she’s got to work on her intonation. Those top notes were a little iffy. Blake congratulates her for getting a turn from Gwen. Ha. “This girl has ice water in her veins,” gushes Adam, as if that was a compliment (?) “You really took it on as your own and understood the lyric,” says Gwen. Her pitch is better, nevertheless, Nala Chooses Team Adam Download at iTunes
Sammie Zonana – 24 – Austin TX – Dangerous Woman by Ariana Grande – She studied film and screenwriting in college. But she fell in love with music after performing at an open mic. She recorded a single. After college, she gigged around town and it was tough. She started a wedding company. She’s engaged to a woman named Brooke. The met at an LGBT speed dating event. She came out to her parents in high school and they are supportive. Mom admits “It was a process for me.” Her family means everything to her. Sammie cries as she talks about them. Gwen turns, and she’s the only one. Sammie brings an indie vibe to Ariana’s hit. Imagine Fiona Apple covering her. Interesting. Her voice is compelling. Adam decided not to turn after Gwen did. Alicia compliments her husky voice. Blake compares her to Joni Mitchell. I don’t hear it. Sorry Blake. “There’s competance, emotion and truth,” says Gwen. She plops a “Team Gwen” hat on her head. – Download at iTunes
Valerie Ponzio – 32 – El Paso TX – Ring of Fire by Johnny Cash – There are “Mexican country” roots in her hometown, and that’s what her music is about, Valerie says. She describes her style as “country Americana.” She’s been singing since the age of 8. She studied at Berklee. After school, she had a string of odd jobs. Her boyfriend is a musician. They started a band and toured the country. The boyfriend says she moves crowds to tears all over the country. She’s hoping Gwen or Blake turn their chairs. I’m a fan of Americana, but for me, her voice is TOO stylized. Gwen turns first. Alicia is next. She has a nice rasp in her upper register. Adam and Blake hit their buttons at the last minute. It’s a 4 chair turn! Adam calls her well rounded and able to relate to all the coaches. Gwen runs up to hug Valerie. “I’m obsessed with you!” she says. Blake calls her voice “incredible.” He pushes his Nashville bonifides and reminds her that he stays involved in his team members careers. Once again, Gwen inexplicably uses her relationship to Blake to impress. Like… if she wanted a channel to Blake she could just pick him. And indeed, she does. Valerie Chooses Team Blake – Download at iTunes