The Voice 8 Knockout Round #1 Live Blog and VIDEOS

The Voice - Season 8

Tonight, The Voice Knockout round begins! Click here for spoilers, but PLEASE do not discuss them here! Fun. lead singer, Nate Ruess will serve as Adviser for all of the coaches, Blake Shelton, Christina Aguilera, Adam Levine and Pharrell Williams.

The singers choose their OWN songs. The coaches set them up side by side for a sing off. In the end, one moves on, the other is up for a steal. Each coach gets ONE steal in the round. Also, there’s going to be a triple knockout on Pharrell’s team. Details on that coming.

So, where in the world is Anthony Riley? There was a triple knockout tonight between Mia Z, Sawyer Fredericks and Paul Pfau on Team Pharrell. It was explained that Anthony left after winning his battle due to “personal reasons.” For the record, Anthony hasn’t tweeted (he was very active prior) since March 13. He returned a tweet on March 17 and then RADIO SILENCE. There is a rumor that he refused to pair with Mia Z, but it’s not substantiated. There could be something personal going on with him. If so, I hope he’s OK!

It’s true that who ever was set to do battle against Mia or Sawyer were destined to lose. And Paul did. It was a really great night of performances from nearly everyone! Some solid talent was lost tonight. Pharrell continues to have a very strong team.


Ashley Morgan vs SonicTeam Christina – Sonic is deaf in one ear. That’s her thing! Ashley has don’t mostly demo work, but not much on stage. She lost the battle, but got 3 steals.

Ashley Morgan – Heartbreaker by Pat Benatar. Christina suggests she rough it up. She needs to work on developing her own style. Christina wants to see her “animal” side. She’s a strong vocalist, but Christina and Nate are right, there’s not a ton of personality here. Demo work has rendered her rather like a cipher with incredible pipes.

Sonic – “A Woman’s Worth” by Alicia Keys – Nate wants to see her lose herself, Christina felt Sonic nailed it in rehearsal. She wonders if it’s enough. A super bluesy performance from Sonic. She wins this face off, because she imbues real emotion and personality into her performance. Ashley is the stronger singer, but Sonic is more the more heartfelt and interesting of the two. – Download from iTunes

Pharrell likes them both, Adam notes Ashley’s powerful voice. He feels it’s an even battle. Blake loves Ashley’s big notes, but Sonic seems more in Christina’s wheelhouse as far the “style of awesome” is concerned. Heh. Christina wishes Ashley would let loose more. Sonic falls short sometimes vocally. Sonic wins the Knockout. Ashley is eliminated.

Sarah Potenza vs Brian JohnsonTeam Blake – He says they are both so powerful, it would not have been fair to pair them up with anyone else. Brian’s dad has MS. Sarah is the rock n roll singer with an old school vibe.

Brian Johnson – Nothing Ever Hurt Like You by James Morrison – He chose a song from an artist he admires. It also allows him to work the stage. Nate thought he was great. Blake thinks it’s great he’s chosen an upbeat song. Blake advises him to interject some dynamics into the performance. Sarah will be formidable. For the first time, Brian isn’t giving me a cheesy vibe. This is pretty good. He’s pulling it off. I miss Morrison’s gruff growl, but Brian’s rendition is heartfelt. – Download from iTunes

Sarah Potenza – Wasted Love by Matt McAndrew – So how about that! She’s singing the winners song from last season’s runner up. Blake thinks she has the opportunity to make it her own. Nate namechecks Van Morrison as an example of how to make a performance believable. They call in Matt! He gives Sarah a few tips. Matt, “sexy nerd,” is her favorite The Voice  contestant of all time. A very powerful performance, that also his it’s quiet, subtle moments. I find Sarah kind of shouty sometimes, but this is a great take on Matt’s song.  – Download from iTunes

Christina thought they both did a phenomenal job. Pharrell calls it a tough knockout. Adam felt she did the song justice. He also calls it even. “I refuse to give Blake any help!” Blake calls them both artists. Sarah wins the KnockoutBrian is Stolen by Adam.

Clinton Washington vs Nathan HermidaTeam Adam

Clinton Washington – Wanted by Hunter Hayes – He chose a country song in order to stand out among his team mates. Do fewer notes, with more power, Adam tells him. Nate agrees, “I’d rather be moved by something, rather than impressed.” Good vocal from Clinton. Nice use of falsetto, too. An emotional performance. He sings it better than Hunter Hayes does.

Nathan Hermida – Leave Your Lover by Sam Smith – He’s only 17! He wants to show Adam that he can open himself up emotionally. Adam advises he sing in falsetto. He’s worried about Clinton’s experience. I’m not loving his enunciation or falsetto. His youth is showing here–he’s not able to dig deep as the lyrics of this song requires. I prefered Clinton.  (Yes. Controversial opinion, I know. But I’m sticking to it.) – Download from iTunes

“Your team doesn’t suck” says Blake. He loved Clinton’s power. Nathan duetted with himself, he says, as the singer switched between his falsetto and full voice. Christina noted Nathan’s pitch issues, but thought the pick was courageous. Pharrell feels there are two worthy singers on the stage. Adam loved Clinton’s versatility. He felt that Nathan finally opened up. Adam says Nathan’s performance spoke to his soul. Nathan wins the Knockout. Clinton is eliminated. BOY DO I DISAGREE WITH THAT DECISION.

Sawyer Fredericks, Mia Z, and Paul PfauTeam PharrellAnthony Riley is not coming back to the show for “personal reasons.” There has been a TON of gossip swirling around Anthony’s obvious absence. Maybe we’ll eventually find out the details. Maybe not.

Mia Z Hold On, I’m Coming by Spencer Davis Group – She came in as a blues musician, and that’s what she’s sticking with! Nate tries to loosen Mia up. She plans on taking some risks. This is a little languid for me, but she knows how to hit those high notes. Really clean adlibs. Wow. Those runs were amazing. But a little distracting. Would that performance have been impressive otherwise? – Downoad from iTunes

Paul Pfau – I Don’t Need No Doctor John Mayer version. – Pharrell wants him to think less and live the performance. Nate wants more energy. Don’t use the guitar as a crutch. Dude is a good guitar player. Vocally, he’s ordinary, especially compared to the other two. He needs to front a band!

Sawyer Fredericks – Collide by Howie Day – He’s putting the guitar aside. They don’t have much advice for him. Nate suggests he pull the mic away at points. Pharrell wants him to walk around a little. Out of all 3 singers, who claim to be blues based, he’s the most soulful. He brings emotion and authenticity to this performance, and proves he can tackle contemporary material. We’ve got a contender here. – Download from iTunes

Adam calls them 3 really great singers. Blake is bummed that he can’t use his steal on Mia Z. He loves her! Christina calls Sawyer a “genetic genius” vocally. Pharrell calls the decision tough. Sawyer and Mia win the battle. Paul is eliminated.

Meghan Linsey vs Travis Ewing – Team Blake – They were both steals.

Meghan Linsey – Natural Woman by Aretha Franklin – She was on Team Pharrell initially. She chose Blake from 3 steals. She wants to transform from a country artists to soul pop. She feels the song gives her an opportunity to reinvent herself. Blake and Nate suggest she have something big planned up her sleeve for the end. I wish she had chosen something more contemporary, off beat. Her quirk was the quality I appreciated when she competed on “Can You Duet.” This is pretty good though, she does add some of her own flavor to the arrangement. – Download from iTunes

Travis Ewing – I Don’t Want to Be by Gavin DeGraw – Nate tells him to work on his breath and intonation. Blake realizes it’s a tough song to sing. He seems nervous tonight. There are some pitch issues, but he’s singing his little heart out. It might not matter. I think he’s cannon fodder for Meghan.

Christina felt Travis gave it his all, Meghan got better and better as the song progressed. Pharrell feels Meghan proved her worthiness as a soul singer. Travis brought it. But Meghan is a tough competitor. Blake felt Travis delivered. But, the winner is Meghan. Meghan wins the Knockout. Travis is Eliminated.

Koryn Hawthorne vs Kimberly Nichole – Team Christina – Koryn is a young, powerful singer. Kimberly is older, has worked the clubs for a few years.

Kimberly Nichole – If You Love Somebody Set them Free by Sting – Christina thinks she’s restricting herself. Never deny your full voice, says Nate. Kimberly plans to put it all out there. She’s such a pro performer. Her experience shows. She’s got to find a way to set herself apart though. I’m not hearing a unique artist here. – Download from iTunes

Koryn Hawthorne – Try by Pink – Christina appreciates her natural passion. Nate wants to steal her for his team. They love her freshness. Don’t run out of breath, Christina warns her. Sing it like she’s empowered. Koryn isn’t as experienced or as technically good as Kimberly, but she performs like she really really wants this. She is bringing the raw emotion. I FELT that. And that’s what counts. Well, it doesn’t matter. One will be stolen – Download from iTunes

Pharrell can feel the bottom of Koryn’s spirit when she sings. It will be a tough decision. Adam felt like he was watching the final two. Kimberley wins the Knockout Pharrell steals Koryn Christina was begging the panel to steal her!

The Voice 8 Top 32

Team Adam

  • Tonya Boyd-Cannon
  • Blaze Johnson
  • Deanna Johnson
  • Barry Minniefield
  • Lexi Davila
  • Nathan Hermida – Winner
  • Joshua Davis – Stolen from Team Blake
  • Clinton Washington – Stolen from Team Christina
  • Brian Johnson – Stolen by Adam

Team Pharrell

  • Lowell Oakley
  • Sawyer Fredericks – Winner
  • Anthony Riley – Left Competition
  • Mia Z – Winner
  • Paul Pfau
  • Caitlin Caporale
  • Hannah Kirby – Stolen from Team Blake
  • Jacob Rummell – Stolen from Team Blake
  • Koryn Hawthorne – Stolen from Christina

Team Christina

  • Rob Taylor
  • Treeva Gibson
  • Joe Tolo
  • Sonic – Winner
  • India Carney
  • Koryn Hawthorne 
  • Ashley Morgan – Stolen from Team Pharrell
  • Kimberly Nichole – Stolen from Team Pharrell – Winner

Team Blake

  • Sarah Potenza – Winner
  • Cody Wickline
  • Brooke Adee
  • Kelsie May
  • Brian Johnson
  • Corey Kent White
  • Travis Ewing – Stolen from Team Pharrell
  • Meghan Linsey – Stolen from Team Pharrell – Winner

About mj santilli 33191 Articles
Founder and editor of, home of the awesomest fan community on the net. I love cheesy singing shows of all kinds, whether reality or scripted. I adore American Idol, but also love The Voice, Glee, X Factor and more!