Category Archives: Talent

America’s Got Talent, Season 11 – Simon’s Back

1464848115_IMG_6639 (1)That’s right Simon’s back. Well, was he ever really gone? In truth he’s always been a creator and producer of America’s Got Talent, but for the first time ever he’ll be judging this season. Well, this show. He’s been a judge of Britain’s Got Talent. So he’s not back as a judge on this show, but he’s back on our TV screens, last seen in this country as a judge on The X Factor which limped to its death after just a few seasons. So with the departure of Howard Stern, our judging panel with now be Simon, Heidi Klum, Mel B, and Howie Mandel, with Nick Cannon again as host.

Nathan Bockstahler is six years old and has never performed on a big stage before, but he feels he’s ready because he has practiced a lot. Simon affirms that he is not married. He is doing comedy for his audition. If he wins he wants a million Legos instead of a million dollars. He is really charming. Mel says she couldn’t stop laughing. Howie affirms that he comes up with his material himself. Heidi thinks that’s fantastic. Simon sees a real character. He gets through with four yeses.

José talks about his partner, his dog Carrie. They are going to do a dance together. His ex-wife didn’t dance with him, so he started dancing with his dog. She dances on her hind feet to a Latin dance with him. Simon reaffirms how they started dancing together, and it seems to just kind of have happened. Howie wants to know why his wife wouldn’t do that, and Mel says she wasn’t expecting that. Heidi thought it was entertaining and fun only for the first fifteen seconds. He gets three yeses to move on.

The Clairvoyants are mind readers. She says they noticed from the very beginning there was a very special connection between them.Their minds crossed, and they began to be able to read minds. They involve Heidi in the act, having her bring her purse up on stage. With the woman in this team blindfolded, Heidi hands the man her lipstick, and she is able to figure out that it’s lipstick, as well as the color code. They do that with people in the audience and the judges as well. Howie says this is the most amazing thing he’s ever seen. Mel feels like she’s stuck in some crazy twilight zone. Heidi calls it absolutely incredible. Simon figures she must be a witch and wants to take her to Vegas. They obviously make it through.

Lincoln Bridge are four men who grew up in the hip-hop era and promise the crowd they won’t know what hit them when they take the stage. They look like they’ll be a tough hip-hop group but instead sing an a capella version of “Somehwere Over the Rainbow.” They get a standing O save for Simon. Mel is speechless. Howie loved it. Simon thought the first half of the song was okay, but it was sensational after that. One of the members in the group gets very emotional. They get four yeses.

The Slackers are also a group. They are inspired by boy bands and also the Spice Girls. They feel they were born to do this. By the time they take the stage they are dressed up like the Spice Girls. They only lip synch to a Spice Girls song and get buzzed by Howie and Simon. Howie jokes he didn’t like the track. Simon asks them to sing a capella, and it’s not good, but Simon jokes it was better than the original. He says yes, as does Mel, but Howie and Heidi say no.

They next act starts out in the dark, and somehow the lights that we see change into birds and disappear and multiply, etc. It’s truly mesmerizing. He even turns himself into a bird and flies away. His name is Hara, and he’s from Japan. Howie says it was just gorgeous and not until he saw his act can he say he now believes in magic. Mel feels like she is already at his show in Vegas. Heidi loved the creativity of it all. Simon says he either needs to come back or come home and live with him as it puts him in the happiest place. He gets four yeses.

Charles and Rose love to entertain. They’ve been married for four years and met at grief counseling. This is what it would be like if Liberace had a wife. She go go dances while he sings Viva Las Vegas. Heidi buzzes them, but the others let them continue. She starts stripping during the performance, and Nick comes and joins her onstage for a bit. The producers or whoever keep stopping the track upsetting the judges. Simon tells them they’re one of the worst acts he’s seen and heard, but he can’t take his eyes off Rose. Howie gives them a yes and says he’s seen the show. Mel knows it’s crazy, but she says yes. Heidi wants them to keep doing it but says no. Simon wonders whether he should think with his head who says they’re nuts or his heart who wants to see it again but bigger than ever. Yeah they get three yeses.

Tape Face is a contestant with black tape over his mouth. He won’t answer any of their questions  onstage. He begins his act and puts oven mitts on and they are puppets who sing “Endless Love” while he makes faces behind them. He then puts half a dress on and slow dances and caresses himself to “Lady in Red.” Simon likes that they didn’t know who he was or what he was going to do. Heidi thought he was creepy then truly loved it. Mel asks who is going to go home tonight and try the Lady in Red thing. Howie believes this is life-changing for him and that everyone …. no one … will know his name by tomorrow.

Ryan Stock and AmberLynn are a couple who met at a festival. He was working as an entertainer and found her dressed as a fairy sitting on a bench and crying and then hired her as his assistant. He shoves a pair of scissors up his nose. then licks them when he pulls them out. He then pulls out a meat hook and jams it right in there until it comes out his mouth. He hangs from the ceiling and no one can watch, and Heidi even buzzes him. Mel loved it but can’t watch it. Howie wonders what was happening in AmberLynn’s life that made this better. Heidi couldn’t watch. Simon says it’s probably the most disgusting thing he’s ever seen, but he loved it. They get through with three yeses.

Laura Bretan is 13 years old and is a singer. She’s nervous about singing in front of Simon knowing he will tell her the truth. She sings because her mom always liked to sing. She’s a really talented opera singer. Even Simon has to stand up for this standing O. Heidi says she was born with such a gift it is unbelievable. Simon has never heard anything like that in all his years of doing this show. She made all of Mel’s hair on her arms stand on end. She changed Mel’s life, so Mel changes hers and hits the golden buzzer sending her straight through to the live shows.

Greg has a passion for danger. They were taught to work hard and get a career, but he had this passion for danger and risk. A small pool is brought out, and he dives in. It’s full of shaving cream. Simon confirms it’s the worst thing they’ve seen, and he announces he’s going home. Heidi goads Nick into jumping  into the pool. She goes up to push him in, and he pulls her in with him. They spread the bubbles all over and chase Howie, Mel, and Simon around finally getting them.

If tonight is any indication, this will be a great season of America’s Got Talent. I had really grown to love Howard Stern on the show, but I have to admit I love seeing Simon Cowell back in action again.

Image Credit: YouTube

The Voice, Season 10 – Alisan ‘Curly Sue’ Porter Wins It for Christina Aguilera

imageIt’s a really exciting finale for this season of The Voice. It will probably be either Adam Wakefield or Alisan Porter taking home the win, but I wouldn’t be that surprised if it was won instead by Hannah Huston or Laith Al-Saadi. It’s going to be an interesting one.

After starting off with a performance by Little Big Town and a look through Hannah’s entire season, she sings a duet with CeeLo Green as they take on “Crazy.” She actually seems to combine much better with him on this than she did last night with her coach, Pharrell Williams. 

Alisan Porter gets ready for her Bring Back performance and brings back Kata Hay, Paxton Ingram, and Ryan Quinn. They’re singing “Straight On” which she promises to be a killer rock show. They deliver, although Ryan needs to loosen up a little more.

Laith gets to check something off his bucket listen when he performs “Rocky Mountain Way” with Joe Walsh. The two guitarists are amazing together. This is a great matchup. 

With a look through Adam”s entire season, Sia sings “Cheap Thrills.” She’s apparently making the rounds of reality shows this week after gifting Tai Trang with a secondary prize last week on the Survivor finale. 

Alison Krauss and Adam Wakefield perform a duet of “Willin’.” He’s been at this so long it seems as if he’s already a star. Hannah then gets ready for her bring back performance along with Bryan Bautista, Caity Peters, and Brian Nhira. They sing “When We Were Young.” It’s a song that matches with Hannah’s style really well.

Zayn performs “Like I Would,” and Blake Shelton follows this with a performance of “She’s Got a Way with Words.” For Laith’s bring back performance he’s calling on Katie Basden, Owen Danoff, and Shalyah Fearing to help him sing “Georgia on My Mind.” Shalyah shows just why she nearly made it to the finals.. Owen  isn’t seen at all, however, and it’s explained at the end that he wasn’t feeling well so didn’t make it.

After a look at Laith’s journey in the competition, Alisan sings a duet with Jennifer Nettles of “Unlove You.” Their voices blend together really well.

Adam Wakefield gets his shot with a bring back performance, and he’s relying on Nick Hagelin, Justin Whisnant, and Mary Sarah. They sing “Gimme Some Lovin’.”  This could be the first time we’ve seen Adam sing without playing either the guitar or the piano. 

Ariana Grande performs onstage before Christina Aguilera joins her for a duet. This must be what they replaced the Whitney Houston duet with. Her family backed out once they saw a leaked copy of it feeling the technology used wasn’t as perfect as it could be.  Following this is a look back on Allison’s time on the show.

With the finalists on the stage, the third and fourth place finishers are named. In fourth place is Laith Al-Saadi of Team Adam. In third place is Hannah Huston of Team Pharrell. It’s between Adam and Alisan, and the winner of season 10 of The Voice is Alisan Porter, leaving Adam Wakefield in second place. Christna is the first female coach to win the show. 

It’s been a great season, and it was wonderful to watch Alisan on this journey. Next season will be an interesting one as well with Miley Cyrus and Alicia Keys taking a seat in the coaches’ chairs with Adam and Blake. Watch for it in the fall!

Image Credit: YouTube

The Voice, Season 10 – Performance Finale Night

imageThis finale seems like it’s nearly decided. While there are four finalists, it seems like the competition is probably between Alisan Porter and Adam Wakefield, though I’m not counting Hannah Huston and Laith Al-Saadi out of it. What’s most interesting about the finale is that each coach has one artist and one artist only competing. Everyone is representing.  They will each sing a cover song, a duet with their coach, and a new original song that they wrote themselves.

Laith of Team Adam is up first. They talk about his original audition, and he says Adam Levine was the coach he was hoping for. Tonight he is singing “White Room,” and Adam feels he’s stayed true to himself. Of course, there’s no other way to do this but to have him accompanying himself with his electric guitar with one of his tremendous solos. I’ll be downloading it when the show is over. Blake Shelton notes he made it here doing it his way. Christina Aguilera is just so excited to see him tear this thing up. Pharrell Williams asks who doesn’t want to play guitar after watching this guy? Adam has no game here and is just enjoying his guy.

Coach Christina brings Alisan some gorgeous shoes as a present. They are working on her original song, and Alisan says it’s about her story and what she’s been through to give others hope. Christina loves the words “Nothing comes easy when you’re fighting for the top.” It’s called “Down That Road.” It’s a very beautiful, moving song, both the song itself and the performance, and yeah, I’ll be downloading it if the originals are available in that capacity. Adam notes the show is called The Voice, but all these other factors start to creep in. If he would be super critical he’d say hers is “The Voice” that deserves to win. Blake says it’s a cool song coming from what he knows of her story. Christina loved being there with her recording that song as she is the epitome of “The Voice.”

For the first duet of the night, it’s Blake and Adam singing “The Conversation.” They are both singing and playing the guitar. He shows that he can move from southern rock to country music very effortlessly. 

Hannah of Team Pharrell admits she didn’t think she’d make it when she auditioned. She says her students have been super important throughout this whole journey. She’s singing a dark, moody version of “Every Breath You Take,” and he says it seems to speak to her spirit in such an amazing way. It sounds like a torch song, completely flipping it, but does seem a little ominous, like it’s coming from a stalker. Adam is very protective of the song, but he thinks it ended up really cool. Blake says it was risky, but he thinks it’ll be a huge reward for her. Pharrell gives credit to the bandleader for taking the song to that place.

It’s another duet, this time with Laith and Adam singing a Bealtes medley with coach on the drums and student on his guitar of course. Adam switches partway through and joins Laith on guitar as the two of them completely rock it out. 

It’s another duet – this time it’s Christina and Alisan singing “You’ve Got a Friend.” The two of them harmonize really well. Like Adam said, if it’s truly about “the voice,” it needs to be Alisan under the confetti tomorrow night.

Blake and Adam meet up in the studio to work on Adam’s original song. The coach says he tells everyone that Adam has worked on this for so long. He admits he wrote this song by himself when he was laying on a beach with a margarita. It’s called “Lonesome Broken and Blue.” Even though he’s on guitar tonight, like every time he sings from behind the piano, this song just packs in the emotion. It’s a download for sure. Pharrell likes all the different sides of him and feels like it’s another slice. Adam says it must be the coolest feeling in the world to play his song for the whole world. Blake see the wriiting in this song as brilliant.

Hannah and Blake are the last duet of the night as they take on Justin Timberlake’s “Brand New.” It’s definitely a great song for Pharrell to do, but somehow it just doesn’t seem like it’s in Hannah’s wheelhouse.

Laith meets up with Adam in the studio to work on his original song. Laith feels he’s the Brie cheese of The Voice, or even the Steely Dan. He feels the song is kind of in that Georgia on My MInd vain and leads to some great guitar solos. It reminds Adam of a really nice, charming Clapton moment. It’s called “Morning Light.” Adam might hear Clapton, but I kind of hear Van Morrison, too, which is never a bad thing, and yeah, of course I’ll download it. Christina says it is really cool to see them do their own songs, and she enjoyed it. Pharrell wants everyone to go buy that song now, so I guess the originals will be available. Adam notes he makes everyone feel so good and plays music for the right reason and fills the room with joy.

Adam says he was living in Nashville before the show, and here he is now part of the final four. He spent a lot of time playing music but not a lot of time out in front. For his last song he’s singing “When I Call Your Name.”Blake knows this is the type of artist they made the show for. He’s back at the piano again with another really country song, which is interesting as much of the season he’s been doing southern rock, but tonight it’s all country, albeit a hint of gospel in this one. He pours it on thick at the end. Christina notes his adlibs on his runs are always impressive to her. Adam says he has amazing taste in the decisions he makes. Blake admits he’ll be downloading this song for himself as well.

Hannah meets up with Pharrell in the studio to work on her original song that she co-wrote with him. He feels the song should talk about her growth and calling her own shots. She calls it crazy to work with the producer of the music of our generation after he notes he worked with Justin and Beyoncé in that very studio. The name of this song is “I Call the Shots.” She’s back to that torch singer feel, although there’s some bluesy soul added in for good measure. She wasn’t owning that thought as much as she should for the title of the song. Adam calls it an amazing process to watch Pharrell  work. Pharrell is honored to be part of the process.

Last up tonight is Alisan who explains she picked Christna as a coach because of course she’s going to pick the person who’s doing everything she wanted to do. She recognizes the pressure on her tonight to bring Christina her first win. Tonight she’s singing “Somewhere” with her coach saying she’s had a tough journey, but now she’s living her dream. Her voice is flawless. Rather than be repetitive, Adam simply says congratulations. Christina is moved to tears, which seems like it could be a first for her on the show. She says she’s an inspiration for everyone who’s ever had a dream  and wants a second chance.

Image Credit: YouTube

The Voice, Season 10 – Pink Mentors and Final 4 Are Chosen

Voice051716Before the semi-finalists take the stage tonight they’ll get some tutelage from Pink. She’ll act as mentor for the teams of Adam Levine, Pharrell Williams, Christina Aguilera, and Blake Shelton. Each artist will sing twice: a solo and a song with one ot the other semi-finalists.

First up tonight is Shalyah Fearing of Team Adam. Pink tells her she is so amazing she wants to punch her. She’s singing “And I’m Telling You I’m Not Going,” explaining it’s her way of telling America she doesn’t want to go home. Pink says she has the most beautiful voice she’s ever heard. This is another song that’s been overdone on reality TV, and while she doesn’t have the power Jennifer Hudson does unless she’s yelling, she puts great emotion into it. After a standing ovation, Christina tells her she was singing for her life. Pharrell recognizes it’s a lot for a 16-year-old to connect and communicate like that. Adam is so overjoyed they got to have this moment they’ve been wanting to have for weeks.

For the first duet of the night we have Alisan Porter and Adam Wakefield singing “Angel from Montgomery.” He accompanies the two of them on the guitar, and the two of their voices blend really well on this song. 

Paxton Ingram of Team Blake, fresh of his Instant Save, tells Pink he has her first album. He’s singing “I’d Do Anything for Love (But I Won’t Do That).” Pink notes she doesn’t get good until she starting yelling, but he starts good, and she thinks it’s ballsy to even attempt a Meatloaf song. He brings some great energy into this performance when the tempo steps up. Christina never would have expected Meatloaf from him but notes he pulled it off. Pharrell thinks he’d be good on Broadway. Blake doesn’t know if he’s ever been more proud of an artist he’s worked with on the show. 

Team Adam’s Laith Al-Saadi mentions hitting number 10 on iTunes last week and Bob Seger mentioning him on Facebook. He’s singing “One and Only” because he wants to show he can take anything and make it his own. When he thinks he can’t hit a note, Pink tells him to clench his butt cheeks to hit it. He has his electric guitar out again tonight for this, and he does hit that high note. Blake says it was beaitufl singing, and his guitar solo worked. Pharrell urges everyone to keep supporting Latih. Adam says he would be the most proud if he were to make it through because he represents somethng that’s near and dear to him.

Bryan Bautista and Mary Sarah combine for a duet of “Break Free.” It’s a different side of her as it’s very contemporary, and we’re used to seeing classic country from her. It’s more Bryan’s style. 

Alisan Porter of Team Christina is up, and Pink wants to geek out over meeting Miss Curly Sue. Alisan returns the favor explaining that for her very first audition she sang “Try.” Alisan is singing “Desperado” tonight, and Pink tells her that her interpretation of it is “the bees knees.” Yeah, I’ll agree with Pink’s assessment. It is the bees knees – so much so that I just set a reminder to download this after I’m done watching the show. Adam says someone who wins the show can do everything and do it in a way that connects you emotionally, and she really does have it all. Blake always looks forward to whatever she’s going to do, and that’s one of his all-time favorite songs. Christina is speechless, yet has so much to say as she’s bursting with pride and admiration.

Hannah Huston and Laith Al-Saadi bring a duet of “Knock on Wood.” You wouldn’t ever expect him to sing this song, but somehow he makes it work. He’s right that he can sing anything and make it his own.

Next up is Adam Wakefield of Team Adam who notes how amazing Pink is. He says he used to teach vocal lessons and every girl wanted to sing Pink. He’s singing Blake’s “I’m Sorry.” Blake thinks it  sounds too easy for him to sing, so he suggests he sing it at the piano, and Pink agrees as it’s something no one else can do. Blake and Pink were dead on with this one. When I’m downloading Alisan’s song, I’ll download this as well. He brings me to tears by the end. Pharrell doesn’t even feel like Adam is competing anymore. Adam says when the audience gets quiet it can be bad, but with him it’s good because they were so moved by what he did. Blake is embarrassed that he ever sang the song after hearing him do it.

Bryan Bautista of Team Christina was actually an usher for one of Pink’s performances. He’s doing Christna’s “Hurt” becaxuse he hasn’t heard from his dad since this whole thing started. Pink notes he can sing his butt off and can even sing higher than she can. And for his performance, he, too, takes a seat at the piano. I just can’t get past the fact his dad isn’t contacting him. Adam says it takes a lot of courage to be that in touch with his emotions. Christina says every time he performs he shows a different element of himself.

Shalyah Fearing and Paxton Ingram get together for a duet of “Masterpiece.”  They’re another pair that combine very well together. However, there isn’t much difficulty in the song for them to impress people with, yet she tries her best to pump it up.

Coach Blake’s Mary Sarah is singing “I Told You So.” Pink thinks she’s adorable and misses people singing traditional country. When she watches a performer she wants to think they have no other choice but to sing that song, and that’s what she wants to hear out of her with this. They have her completely covered up with long scarves coming down, so it’s hard to tell if she’s reaching that emotion or not. Christina feels like she’s seen her become a  woman on the show. Blake wants people to YouTube what she just did when people ask what’s good in country music.

Hannah Huston, Coach Pharrell’s only artist, is singing “When a Man Loves a Woman,” and Pink notes if she’s been in love like that beofre we should know that when she sings. Hannah doesn’t like to share but notes she tends to let all that go when she sings. She starts the song a capella, and it helps to bring out that emotion in the song. Adam thinks they take her for granted because she’s been the most consistent. Blake says she hasn’t had anything like that the entire season. Pharrell agrees that it’s been a slow build for her.

Skipping ahead to elimination night, I’m hoping that Alisan, Laith, and Adam make it to the finals. It doesn’t matter to me who the fourth person is. They seem like they might be on track for that having strong performances all season long as well as this week.

The first artist to be called safe tonight is Adam Wakefield of Team Blake. There’s one-third of my dream team. 

Before we get more results Alicia Keys, who will be sitting in one of the coaches’ chairs next season, sings “In Common.” 

The next artist to be called safe is Alisan Porter of Team Christina. There’s two-thirds of my dream team. 

It’s yet another musical interruption with OneRepublic singing “Wherever I Go.” 

The third finalist called safe is Hannah Huston of Team Pharrell. He makes it to the finals despite only having one artist for the past few weeks. 

Three of the five remaining artists will sing for the last remaining Instant Save. It’s between Paxton Ingram, Mary Sarah, Bryan Bautista, Shalyah Fearing, and Laith Al-Saadi. The three singing tonight for that save are Mary Sarah, Bryan, and Laith. This sends Paxton and Shalyah home.

Mary Sarah of Team Blake sings “Something in the Water” for her Instant Save chance. She seems incredibly nervous and isn’t her normal bubbly self and is really pitchy. Pharrell talks about her intensity and thinks she showed people she wanted to be there. It blows Blake away that she’s in this position.

Bryan Bautista of Team Christina sings “Adorn.” He’s much more calm, cool, and collected and hits a great note while his coach dances in her seat. Pharrell says someone should be signing this guy right now. Christina says everyone who has seen this guy in the competition representing and showing something new should vote him through.

Laith Al-Saadi of Team Adam sings “All Along the Watchtower” for his chance to stay. And, of course, he’s shredding with his guitar as usual. He works in some vocals and two guitar solos in his quick time slot. Adam notes he’s not a pop star or pop singer and knows it’s crazy he made it this far, but he’s a tremendous singer and just did two guitar solos that were bad ass 

At the beginning of the commercial break the vote totals are Bryan with 22%, Laith with 50%, and Mary Sarah with 28%. Once the final Save votes are totaled, the last finalist is Laith Al-Saadi. My dream team is complete.

Tune in next week to see these finalists compete. I’d be okay with Adam, Alisan, or Laith winning, but I’m really hoping Alisan wins it. But there’s no doubt that all of them deserve recording contracts.

Image Credit: YouTube

The Voice, Season 10 – Blake and Gwen’s Duet + Results

Voice051016This is a big one they’ve been promoting all over the place. It doesn’t have anything to do with the contestants this season. It’s about promoting the hype that Blake Shelton and Gwen Stefani have created around themselves and their relationship. They will be performing together tonight.

But first, Team Blake’s Paxton Ingram will take the stage. This week he is singing “I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me)” and is changing it up with a more acoustic vibe. It’s his coach’s favorite song he’s done so far. The move goes on to move the song out of the 80s genre. Christina Aguilera loves how he puts his heart and soul into everything. Pharrell Williams feels like he’s finding himself. Adam Levine finds him one of the most infectious performers they have. Blake Shelton thinks he’s the one guy who tries to take it another notch forward every week.

Sticking with Team Blake, Mary Sarah is up next. She’s doing “My Church,” which he thinks is somewhat of a throwback, which is of course her forte. She thinks the song captures that imperfectness that is so beautiful about everyone. She manages to take advantage of the finer points of her performance. Pharrell thinks Blake’s suggestion she perform without her guitar was a good one. Adam thinks it was her best as she found a lane. Blake thinks it’s easily the most connected she’s been to a song.

Coach Christina’s Nick Hagelin feels he’s been through it all with saves and being brought back. He’s singing “Hold On, We’re Going Home” and thinks it represents returning back to loving his wife the way she deserves to be loved. He’s such a family guy that when he can connect with that in songs like he does here, it’s when he really shines. Pharrell says his favorite parts were when he sang more in his chest voice. Adam though it was really cool that he was able to dance with it. Christina loved how he brought home his own little hook thing with the song.

Hannah Houston, the only artist Pharrell has left in the competition, is singing “Say You Love Me.” For her it’s super emotional, and she wants people to be moved. Her coach tells her to treat it like she’s stating a case to a jury. She seems to be displaying much more emotion than she usually does. Blake says it was his personal favorite of the songs she’s done all season. Christina agrees that it’s by far her favorite. Pharrell says the dynamics in her performance made her a great storyteller.

After a performance by Florida-Georgia Line, Shalyah Fearing of Team Blake is singing a song that her grandmother used to make her sing, “A Change Is Gonna Come.” Her coach wants her to make sure she doesn’t rush past the cues. She ends up throwing everything she has into this. For Blake it brings him back to the playoff moment she had. Christina wants her to develop the low end. Adam says no one means it more than Shalyah does.

Laith Al-Saadi of Team Adam had the number one blues records on the charts last week. This week he’s doing “We’ve Got Tonight,” as Bob Seger is from his hometown. Adam notes an intimate ballad is a different side of him. Indeed, seeing him at the piano instead of behind a guitar is different, but it’s a good different. Pharrell feels like America needs to vote him through every week because it’s a chance to support that guy you knew in high school that was just like him. Adam notes the room stopped, and his voice filled the whole room.

And finally, it’s Blake and Gwen debuting “Go Ahead and Break My Heart.” They’re so different, but for some reason their relationship works, and for some reason the song works in the same way.

Team Blake’s Adam Wakefield will take the stage next. He”s singing “Love Has No Pride,” and he is again playing the keyboard. Blake knows he always has a unique take on a song, and he does with this one as well. And that take on this song makes it look so natural. Christina had a dream about him that she does not elaborate on. Blake says it is his best performance so far, and he’ll see him in the finale.

Alisan Porter of Team Christina brings her kids with her to her rehearsal. They sing the ABC song together. This week Alison is singing “Cryin.’ ” She says all the songs she’s done on the show are pieces of her and who she wants to be as an artist. She does Steven Tyler proud. Pharrell says she killed the perception of what moms can do. Christina tells her she is a superstar right now.

Last up tonight is Team Christina’s last artist, Bryan Bautistsa. HIs song was number one on the Latino charts last week. This week he’s doing 1+1, and his coach thinks it’s the perfect song to show off that sensual side of him. It ends up being his best song so far. Adam says as a male vocalist, he has the most impressive ability to sound effortless in all his super-high register stuff. Christina wants Beyoncé to do a duet with him. She thinks it would be magic.

As we skip ahead to results night, the first artist called safe is Hannah Houston of Team Pharrell.

James Bey takes the stage to sing “Let It Go” (no, not that one),” and then it’s time for more results. Bryan Bautista of Team Christina and Adam Wakefield of Team Blake are called safe.

The artists also had another top advisor come in this week to see them. It’s Adam Samberg, posing as Conor 4 Real. And, of course, with him it’s just a whole bunch of jokes. He then takes the stage with Adam to sing “I’m So Humble.”

It’s back to the results as Laith Al-Saadi of Team Adam and Mary Sarah of Team Blake are called safe. With the last four still standing, the last two called safe are Alisan Porter of Team Christina and Shalyah Fearing of Team Adam. This leaves Nick Hagelin of Team Christina and Paxton Ingram of Team Blake as the bottom two, destined for a singoff for the Instant Save.

Paxton sings “How Will I Know” for his chance at the Instant Save. It’s a completely toned down version. Pharrell says it was a great song choice as it showed him as an inspirational leader. Adam thought it showed so much resilience. Blake wonders why they didn’t do that song in the competition.

Nick takes the stage to sing “Change the World” and does something a little different as he’s not singing with as much falsetto as he usually does. Pharrell notes he has this other thing to emote and connect which makes it hard to judge him. Adam finds this a horrible position to be in, because both he and Paxton are such bright personalities. The performance made Christina smile so much both inside and outside.

At the beginning of the commercial break the vote totals have Nick ahead with 52% over Paxton’s 48%, but it’s 50/50 by the time it comes back from commercial. By the time it’s all said and done, the fans have chosen to save Paxton, sending Nick home.

Image Credit: YouTube

The Voice, Season 10 – Top 10, the First Lady, and Eliminations

Voice050316The contestants tonight have a lot to look forward to tonight. Not only have they made it to the top 10, but they also have Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden in the audience tonight along with many veterans and their families. Mrs. Obama even introduces the top 10 singing “Home” in honor the military. Unfortunate choice of language: I mean the top 10 are singing, not Mrs. Obama.

Up first to perform tonight is Team Pharrell’s Daniel Passino fresh off his Instant Save last week. He feels like he let his coach down. He’s singing “I Don’t Want to is a Thing” because it’s a culmination of his entire journey. It’s another one of those songs that’s been done so many times that there isn’t much different that he can bring to it. Adam Levine says everything should be considered an up until the bitter end. Christina Aguilera explains you definitely can’t say that he doesn’t have passion. She and Pharrell Williams both heard pitch issues.

Team Adam’s Shalyah Fearing brings her mom into her rehearsals for the song “My Kind of Love.” It represents the type of artist she wants to be. Her coach is still waiting for her big breakthrough. She, too, has a few pitch issues but still has a powerful performance. Blake Shelton loves her going back to that type of performance. Pharrell says it’s cool that her spirit is present. Adam thinks she has the thing everybody wants but never specifies what that is.

Nick Hagelin of Team Christina says this validates the career he’s pursued for so long. This week he is singing ‘I Can’t Help It” and feels it defines his lane as an artist. His coach encourages him to change things up a bit with his falsettos. He starts the song sitting in a chair while still trying to do some dance moves which comes off a little weird. Pharrell says he represents all the people who were told no but still look for that second chance. Blake felt like there were times where he sounded like Michael Jackson. Christina is so happy that Blake brought it up, as she heard the same thing.

Team Pharrell’s Hannah Huston says her mom has been here every single week and is an excellent singer in her own right. Hannah is singing “Rolling in the Deep” and knows she has to be careful covering Adele. But Pharrell sees similarities as Adele also doesn’t apologize for how she feels. She definitely holds her own with this song. Adam can only be critical of her sliding up to the notes. Pharrell says that was 1000% amazing and so sick.

Next up is Laith Al-Saadi of Team Adam. All of his albums pre-Voice are at the top of iTunes right now thanks to Pharrell’s mention. He’s singing “The Thrill Is Gone” this week, and Adam is happy, as he’s been wanting him to do some B.B. King. Once again he is absolutely sick on the guitar. Blake cautions him moving forward to not diminish his singing. Adam says it was by far the best show of musicianship he’s seen on the show.

Paxton Ingram of Team Blake is excited about charting on iTunes last week and getting tweets from other artists like Kelly Clarkson. He’s singing “It’s All Coming Back to Me Now” this week,” and Blake thinks he’s finally realizing he’s more than just a guy who can sing and dance. And you can tell in his performance that Blake is right and that Paxton finally sees that in himself. Christina says it brought her back to her audition days. Blake explains what is happening with him right now is the reason he does this job.

Team Blake is up again with Mary Sarah. She had the number one song on the Country charts last week. This week she’ll be doing “Stand By Your Man” which Blake says is a very difficult song to song. He asks her if she’ll let him open for her someday. She manages to update the song a little bit, not that it needed it. Adam says it feels like this was the first thing she has done in the zone of who she is. Blake says she has no idea how she just engaged the entire Country audience.

Taking the stage next is Team Christina’s Bryan Bautista who is signing “Promise”” to pay homage to his Latin roots. His coach didn’t even know he could sing in Spanish before this. She thinks it’s a big deal to take a risk like this. He does have a few pitch issues in the song. Pharrell says he knows the Latin community is losing their minds right now. Adam says even his Jewish blood loves him very much. Christina boasts he is the only person representing the Latinos this season and wants the Latin community to show him the love.

Sticking with Team Christina, it’s Alison Porter singing the physical representation of the hardest time of her life with her addiction issues: “Let Him Fly.” She ended up leaving a relationship that wasn’t working, and right after that he died; she’s singing this for him. This song is beautiful, and her rendition brings me to tears. I think she may have just won the show. Adam notes the mark of an artist is to use everything in their life to speak through the music, and she did that. Blake loved her before but really loves her now that she’s doing Country. Christina is proud of her for being gracious enough to show her vulnerability.

Last up tonight is Adam Wakefield of Team Blake. His coach wants him to keep the pedal to the metal tonight. He’s singing “I Got a Woman” for his girl. Blake realizes he’s a shy guy but says it needs to look like he’s having the time of his life. He sings from behind the piano tonight and displays just how much of an artist he is. Pharrell can’t wait for that album he’s going to make. Blake wants to change it from “Damn Daniel” to “Add-Damn!”

Skipping ahead to elimination night, DNCE performs “Toothbrush” and “Cake by the Ocean.” Following this is a tribute to mothers with the contestants appearing with their moms and the coaches honoring their mothers as well.

The top ten take the stage to find out the first artists who are safe: Alisan Porter of Team Christina, Adam Wakefield of Team Blake, and Shalyah Fearing of Team Adam.

Sawyer Fredericks, Pharrell’s winning artist from season 8, returns to The Voice to sing his new single, “Four Pockets.”

The remaining seven artists take the stage for more results. Also called safe are Hannah Houston of Team Pharrell and Mary Sarah of Team Blake.

With one more look at the remaining five artists, three more artists are called safe: Bryan Bautista of Team Christina, Laith Al-Saadi of Team Adam, and Paxton Ingram of Team Blake. This means Nick Hagelin and Daniel Passino will sing for the Instant Save.

Nick sings “Thinking Out Loud” for his Instant Save. He should have sung this last night. Adam thinks he’s a talented dude and a good person and believes he should be the one moving on. Christina notes he’s just that guy who everyone falls in love with..

Daniel sings “Uptown Funk” which is quite a departure for him. I don’t think it will save him. I’m pretty sure he’s on his way out the door. When Pharrell thinks about all he’s done, of course he wants him to move forward, yet he feels content with all they have done together.

At the beginning of the commercial break, the vote count is 19% for Daniel and 81% for Nick. It’s not looking too good for Daniel.

With all the votes in, the artist America chose to use their Instant Save on is Nick Hagelin, sending Daniel Passino home and leaving Pharrell with just one artist left.

Image Credit: NBC App

The Voice, Season 10 – Top 11 Perform + Results

Voice042616We start the show with a dedication to Prince. Adam Levine says he is one of the most profound influences on him and notes he did things his way until the end. Pharrell Williams won’t forget his aunt playing Purple Rain the first time and says he always played it when he’d visit after that. Christina Aguilera notes he’ll always be such an inspiration for all generations to come. She loved his passion for artists’ rights. Blake Shelton wishes he would have had a chance to meet him and says his music can always change his mood when he hears it.

Shalyah Fearing of Team Adam is up first. She’s taking on “The Climb.” He loves the song on her, and she says she used to listen to the song a lot, and it reminds her of her family. He wants her to enunciate more. The song might be a little too much for her, as she does get a little pitchy. Blake says all he could think of was how true the song is to her story right now. Christina thinks Miley Cyrus will be proud of this version of the song. Pharrell notes even though she didn’t do a gospel song, you can still hear that in her. Adam thinks she’s like the embodiment of the dream.

Team Pharrell’s Daniel Passino wants to show a more vulnerable side and wants to sing Pink’s version of “Time After Time.” His coach tells him to work the audience and sing into the eyes of the girls. Daniel appreciates that he treats him like a student of music. He doesn’t get up and close with the girls in the audience until close to the end. Blake calls him smooth. Christina gives kudos to Pharrell for the coaching. Pharrell says the last note was crazy.

Paxton Ingram of Team Blake is doing an inspirational song as suggested by Pharrell. It’s cool to him to go back to the basics after singing in church. He’ll be singing “Break Every Chain.” His coach knows this song is pushing him which is what he needs. You have to hand it to Pharrell for this suggestion; it’s a perfect genre for Paxton. Pharrell feels like he’s seen him the freest he’s been. Adam says it was the perfect thing for him to take all his skill and put it together. Blake believes that although Paxton is always smiling, he’s never smiled like this.

Owen Danoff, last week’s save for Team Adam, is singing “Fire and Rain.” He had a friend he grew up with who joined the Marines and was deployed but didn’t make it back, so that makes him connect to this song. Adam wants him to emote more and give it everything. Watching the performance, this guy belongs back in the 70s. It really seems like this is how the song was written. Christina remembers him as a storyteller even back to the auditions. Adam loves the version of the song he did and is always proud of him.

Mary Sarah of Team Blake is singing “Johnny & June,” and Blake notes it’s not old school but is a tip of the hat to old school. She thinks it speaks to a love that is unconditional. Her coach is working hard on making it something fans will want to download form iTunes. While last week she didn’t seem to be able to carry off Carrie Underwood, this one translates much better. Christina calls her consistent and strong. Pharrell gives it to her for being able to remain in her upper register that long. Blake really feels she will move the dial on iTunes tonight.

Team Christina’s Alison Porter is singing “Stay with Me Baby” this week and knows it’s been done by incredible artists. It will be fun for her to figure out how to do it. Christina thinks it’s wonderful to see her take such a risk. She is just so amazing, listening to her week after week. Adam thinks she’s going to win this thing. Blake notes the growth in her performances, as there’s no where else for her to go. Christina notes she’s making her family proud week after week.

It’s more Team Christina with Bryan Bautista. He’s singing “Just the Way You Are” and says he sang this song for his little sister when she turned 16. Christina thinks it sounds very Marvin Gaye/Donny Hathaway-ish. He starts to get really creative with it. It’s hardly recognizable as a Bruno Mars song. Pharrell calls it effortless. Adam thinks he definitely has the greatest range of anybody there. Christina says it was silky smooth and the choices were all right.

Adam Wakefield of Team Blake brings his mom, straight from Scotland, in to meet his coach. He’s performing “Lights” this week and tries to put it more in his usual genre. Blake wishes he could do something more powerful with the memory. I thought I wouldn’t like it, but I do, just not as much as his usual stuff. Pharrell thinks he has a little Steve Winwood in him. Adam says the crazy thing about him is he does everything. Blake notes you always know there’s just a little bit more that he could do.

Nick Hagelin from Christina’s team notes his little boy broke his shin last week, but he’s still watching. He’s singing “Your Body Is a Wonderland” this week,” and his coach says he has a special way of connecting with the people in the audience, so has him pick up the guitar again. This is definitely the type of music he should be performing. Blake likes seeing him get back to this thing and thinks it was one of his better performances. Christina has become a big fan of his on and off the stage.

Hannah Houston of Team Pharrell wants to do something more stripped down this week so is singing “I Can’t Make You Love Me.” Her coach knows she needs some height with the song to give her that stripped-down feeling. This song has been covered so many times before, that it’s hard to listen to it and hear something new, but she manages that at the end. Adam explains she can sing so well but still has a unique character in her voice. Pharrell knows all of Nebraska was standing up for her tonight.

Up last is Laith Al-Saadi who is surprised he’s still there since he isn’t the youngest or prettiest. He’s singing “Make It Rain” because his coach wants him to do something more contemporary. Adam thinks this is rooted so much in the classics, that it fits him. Listening to him it”s hard to believe it’s an Ed Sheeran tune. Blake can’t wait for what he’s going to do each week. Pharrell asks for the names of the recordings he made before The Voice and encourages everyone to download them. Adam calls him amazing.

Skipping ahead to results night, the first artists to be called safe after a performance of Thomas Rhett singing “T-shirt” are Mary Sarah of Team Blake and Nick Hagelin of Team Christina. Also deemed safe are Laith Al-Saadi of Team Adam and Alisan Porter of Team Christina.

Team Pharrell sings “Let Love Rule,” and then Hannah Houston of Team Pharrell and Paxton Ingram of Team Blake are declared safe as well.

Team Christina take the stage to perform “Live and Let Die,” and then the last three artists called safe are Shalyah Fearing of Team Adam, Adam Wakefield of Team Blake, and Bryan Bautista of Team Christina. This leaves Daniel Passino of Team Pharrell and Owen Danoff of Team Adam to face off for the Instant Save.

Daniel sings “Jealous” with a much more moving performance than the song he performed last night. Christina says he showed just now why he’s still around. Pharrell thinks the performance spoke for itself.

Owen sings “Burning House,” sticking to the same type of music that he is known for. Blake doesn’t want him to beat himself up too much about being in the bottom two two weeks in a row. Adam says Owen tells the truth and is extremely genuine in the way he does it.

At the start of the Instant Save in the first commercial, the vote totals are 53% for Daniel and 47% for Owen. By the time it’s all said and done, America decides to save Daniel, sending Owen home.

I agree with Adam that Alisan could easily win it all, but there are some definite dark horses in the competition as well. Laith was mentioning how all of his songs are ending up on the iTunes charts, and if that’s the case, consider that horse very dark.

Image Credit: YouTube

The Voice, Season 10 – Top 12 Live + ResultsThe Voice, Season 10 – Top 12 Live + Results

Voice041916It’s a big moment for the contestants this week on The Voice. They’ve made it to the live top 12, but they can’t stop yet. They still have to hand in a top performance to make it to next week.. And now, it’s out of the coach’s hands. It’s all up to the fans on who will stay and who will leave.

Mary Sarah from Blake Shelton’s team is first up tonight. She’s singing “So Small” because she is kind of leaning towards being that kind of artist. She relates the song to her brother who weighed only 1-1/2 pounds when he was born. Maybe she should stick to traditional country, though, as her performance doesn’t match what Carrie Underwood could do. Christina Aguilera says she always knows she’ll deliver a solid performance. Pharrell Williams wonders if she ever imagined she’d be doing this when she worked at Boot Barn. Adam Levine thinks she did a very unique version of the song. Blake got completely wrapped up in the lyrics of the song.

Team Adam’s Laith Al-Saadi is singing “Born Under a Bad Sign” this week and is honored to be able to sing it. He notes he’s a big fan of the blues and has been singing it since he was young and has even shared the stage with B.B. King. This sounds like what you’d hear in a blues club, and that’s a compliment. Blake believes that has to be as good as it gets for the blues. Pharrell notes that this guy is the real thing. Adam notes that he plays authentic blues.

Daniel Passino of Team Pharrell is singing “Human Nature” because the origin of everything he loves about pop music comes from Michael Jackson. Pharrell sees it as a brilliant choice. It’s a bit hard to separate the song from Michael Jackson, so it makes it hard to enjoy it from another artist. Adam notes that it’s amazing what confidence does. Christina has the comment of the night: “Damn, Daniel!” Pharrell can’t take any praise, saying it’s all him.

Sticking with Team Pharrell, Emily Keener brings her dad in to meet her coach. He’s the guy who introduced her to these old classics. This week she’s singing “Lilac Wine.” Pharrell thinks it will transfer people to a different time. She was a save for Pharrell, and I’m not so sure this highly artistic song will find fans that her last performance didn’t. Adam has been wanting that song on the show. Christina says that’s what she was waiting for from her. Pharrell reminds everyone that she’s just 17.

Team Christina’s Nick Hagelin first heard “Mine Would Be You” by Blake Shelton four years ago and immediately thought of his wife. His coach notes he’s transformed the song now into something that sounds like it was custom-made for him. He accompanies himself on the piano and could easily turn this into a hit for himself. Pharrell says Blake should write more songs for him. Blake says when he sings in concert this weekend, people are going to want him to do Nick’s version of this song. Christina has to say that he’s such a pleasure to work with.

Adam Wakefield of Team Blake will be doing “Soulshine” as an homage for his brother who died. He tries it with bluesy chords, but Blake thinks that confuses the message of the song, so they decide to try it as gospel instead. They picked the perfect genre for this song; it’s another one that could be released as a hit. Pharrell asks if that’s what we’re doing, taking people to church on television and setting them free. Adam Levine says Adam Wakefield will be able to do anything he wants with some of the people he worships. Blake tells him he’s going to be around a long time and not just in terms of the show.

Christina’s saved artist Bryan Bautista is up and will be singing “Kiss from a Rose.” She believes with this song people will see more of a softer side of him. She wants him to really deliver his heart out there. He may have bit off more than he can chew, as it’s a little pitchy at times. Pharrell is sure there will be a record deal for him at the end of the show. Christina says every girl needs to buy that and be lulled to sleep by him.

Owen Danoff, Adam’s save, is singing “7 Years.” He loves it because it’s like a flashback. Adam has lots of advice for him and obviously wants to keep him around, suggesting he not play the bass while he’s singing. It’s obvious that it’s not an easy song to sing, yet he breezes right through it. Pharrell says it’s awesome to see a shy person come out and sing something like that. Adam says the best part of the performance was watching him bust out of his shell when he walked to the other side of the stage.

Alisan Porter of Team Christina picks what her coach calls a monster song, “Stone Cold.” She connects to it since both she and Demi Lovato have struggled with addiction issues. She’s just as remarkable as she always is but somehow brings even more grit to her performance. Adam says every year there’s one person who epitomizes what the show is about, and obviously he means her. Blake asks if she’s bored with being great and asks her to suck sometime. Christina cannot wait for the Alisan album.

Next up is Blake’s save, Paxton Ingram. He’s singing “Hands to Myself” but doesn’t have the grip on it yet that his coach wants him to. They finally reach it, and he says he gets that from church. He has such an ease in his performance level. Pharrell thinks Miami should be very proud. Blake thinks he’ll be around for awhile.

Team Pharrell is up with Hannah Huston, and she is singing “Something’s Got a Hold on Me.” He believes there’s not much she can’t do and encourages her take charge of her performance. This song makes it really difficult to imagine her being a preschool teacher. Adam thinks it’s a new genre of music and calls it alien soul. Blake says it’s hard to not get wrapped up in her performances. Pharrell believes this is innate and within her.

Last up is Shalyah Fearing of Team Adam. They’re still talking about her great performance last week. She’s taking on “Up to the Mountain,” saying that’s what she needs at this point in the competition, some faith. Her coach encourages her to have a blueprint to her performance. And that blueprint leads to a really powerful performance. What Christina loves about her is that she’s a fearless singer. Pharrell loved feeling when she was going to “press the gas.” Adam is so impressed by the woman that she’s becoming in front of everyone.

Skipping ahead to the results show from Tuesday night, Coach Gwen Stefani comes back to the show and starts out the night with a performance of her song “Misery.” Boyfriend Blake clearly enjoys it. Granted, it’s a good song, but I’m not real fond of her odd hairstyle.

The top 12 takes the stage to get some results. The first two artists called safe: Team Blake’s Adam Wakefield and Team Christina’s Alisan Porter. Neither of those two are a surprise. The next two safe artists are Team Christina’s Bryan Bautista and Team Pharrell’s Daniel Passino.

After a performance of “I Love a Rainy Night by Team Blake and their coach, it’s back to the results. The next to be called safe are Team Adam’s Shalyah Fearing, Team Blake’s Paxton Ingram, and Team Adam’s Laith Al-Saadi.

Before hearing the last of the results, Team Adam and their coach sing “If You Want Me to Stay.” The last three contestants declared safe are Team Pharrell’s Hannah Houston, Team Christina’s Nick Hagelin, and Team Blake’s Mary Sarah. Both Blake and Christina’s teams are completely safe. The bottom two are Emily Keener and Owen Danoff.

Emily sings “Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain” for the Instant Save. Owen sings “Lego House” for his chance to stay. With the vote open during the commercial break, we can see Owen leading the votes. When the final votes are tallied, the artist saved is Owen, sending Emily home.

The top 11 will perform next week with Team Pharrell once again handicapped from the start and down one member from his team.

Image Credit: YouTube

The Voice, Season 10 – Live Playoffs, Night 2 and Wednesday’s Results

TheVoice041316It’s night two of the Live Playoffs on The Voice. Tonight we’ll hear from Team Pharrell and Team Adam. Once again each coach will be allowed to bring back one comeback artist from any team. Then on Wednesday night two artists will be voted in from each team, and the judges will decide which one artist of the remaining three on their teams will come back next week to make up the top 12.

Right off the bat, Pharrell Williams is opening with his comeback artist Daniel Passino who was previously on Team Christina. He’s singing “When I Was Your Man,” and he not only sings it but sets up the production of the number. This is the perfect song for him, and he proves he was a wise choice as a comeback artist. Adam Levine is really impressed by him. Blake Shelton tells him he put himself right back in the mix. Christina’s Aguilera loved his tenderness. Pharrell is so proud of of him and says he just wrote his future.

Team Pharrell is up again with Emily Keener. She’s singing and playing the keyboard to “Still Crazy After All These Years.” He tells her she just takes people on a ride and says her growth is not about technique but revealing what she has. To sing this song she just seems wise beyond her 17 years. Adam tells her she got him with that song. Christina especially loved the verses. Pharrell felt like she took them all to a ’70s coffee shop in New York or San Francisco.

Laith Al-Saadi of Team Adam is up and singing “With a Little Help from My Friends.” This song means a lot to him because he thinks we all rely on our friends to get by. Adam begs him to do some shredding with his guitar. This is how this song is meant to be played and sung, on full blast and with full emotion. Blake notes it’s cool to know there were more verses to the song, as he only knew the one from The Wonder Years. Christina felt he let loose more tonight. Pharrell pleads with classic rock fans to vote for Laith. Adam is just happy that he represents something that sometimes goes unappreciated.

Moushumi will take the stage next for Team Pharrell, and she’s singing “Love Yourself” to show people what they can look forward to when she is able to sing her original music. Her coach wants to ramp up the song a little bit as it’s all just on one singular level. As she sings the song, you can tell what Pharrell meant, as there really isn’t anywhere for the song to go. Adam found himself wanting to hear more of her voice and less production. Christina disagrees and loves what they did with the song production-wise. Pharrell says it’s clear this is what she’s supposed ;to be doing, as she has a following all the way to India..

Pharrell stole Lacy Mandigo from Blake in the Knockouts, and he had stolen her from Christina in the Battle Rounds. She’s singing “Love Is a Battlefield,” introduced to Pat Benatar’s music through her dad. Pharrell tells her she’s too busy worrying about her hair while she’s performing, and as a rocker she shouldn’t be. She doesn’t pay any attention at all to her hair tonight as she performs. Blake still knows there’s something special about her. Christina tells her she rocked it tonight and gave her all. Pharrell tells her this proved she was never meant to go home..

Owen Danoff from Team Adam is next up, and he’s feeling like everything is clicking. He’s singing “Hero” and thinks this allows him to introduce himself to everyone as he’s only been doing older music. His coach has seen a tremendous shift in his confidence. While it’s a newer song, his style kind of makes it sound like one of his older songs. Blake says he made that seem like his song and not a cover. Pharrell says his unique tone with something so folk was a magical moment. Adam thinks making a song your own is the only real mark of a good singer.

Adam’s team is up again with Shalyah Fearing who he stole from Pharrell who stole her from Christina. She’s singing “Listen,” and Adam calls it not a typical Beyoncé song. He warns her to not undersing and not lose power and realizes she’s perfect for this song. It’s not easy to sing a Beyoncé song, but she does amazing. After a standing O, Blake notes someone that no one was thinking that strongly about just became a frontrunner. Christina is excited to hear this from her. Pharrell is honored to have been a part of her journey. Adam says we feel the message she is trying to convey.

Adam’s comeback artist is Nate Butler who he sent home in the Knockouts. He’s singing “Sara Smile,” and Adam thinks it’s good for him because his voice is really smooth with a great tone. He advises him to lay back in it since it’s a soul/R&B-type song. Nerves are affecting him a little in the beginning, but he completely hits his stride in the middle. Blake notes that just when you think you’ve heard everything from Nate, he throws in a run and then the falsetto at the end. Adam says the subtleties and nuances to what he does are amazing.

Caity Peters of Team Pharrell is singing Adele’s “I’ll Be Waiting.” She usually sings ballads, so he thinks this is a good uptempo song for her. He gets her to sing high notes when she’s used to singing low. After the other explosive performances, this one seems to fall a little flat. Christina felt like everything was brought to life. Pharrell is happy for her because she reminds him you’re in your own jail until you let loose and have fun.

It’s back to Team Adam for a performance by Caroline Burns. Her friends have been asking her if Adam smells good. He wants her to challenge herself as the competition goes on, and she will tonight with “All I Want.” He thinks her goal now is to find the confidence. I can only think every time I watch her how incredibly young she looks. Blake says she reminds him of Danielle Bradbury. Pharrell notes this is a total different level for her. Adam still thinks there is something more and another level she hasn’t reached yet.

It’s Team Adam again with Brian Nhira who is already singing uplifting messages for fans. He’s performing “Alive” tonight, and Adam wants to hear more pain in it. He needs to be as vulnerable here as he’s ever been. He does a good job getting that emotion into it tonight. Christina says he has a crazy range. Pharrell doesn’t understand how he hits the high notes and doesn’t waver. Adam is nicknaming him “Game Time.”

Last up for the night is Team Pharrell’s Hannah Huston. She’ll be singing “Ain’t No Way,” and she knows she needs to stretch her voice. He thinks she can go all the way and wants her to show that. Listening to her sing, it’s sometimes hard to imagine that she’s a preschool teacher. Blake says she does a combination of frustration and desperation when she sings. Pharrell tells her that her students are right that she is super colorful when she sings.

Skipping ahead to the results on Wednesday night, Team Pharrell sings “Don’t You Worry Child.” America has saved Hannah Huston and Daniel Passino. Pharrell needs to decide who to save among Emily Keener, Moushumi, Caity Peters, and Lacy Mandigo. He saves Emily, sending the other three home.

Team Blake is up next with “Hey Brother.” America saves Adam Wakefield, which is no surprise, and Mary Sarah, which is also not a surprise. Blake needs to decide who to save among Paxton Ingram, Katie Basden, Joe Maye, and Justin Whisnant. He chooses to save Paxton, saying he’s believed in him since the beginning.

Next up is Team Christina to sing as a group. America’s votes have saved Alisan Porter, which is also non-surprising, and Nick Hagelin, which is a bit surprising. Between Tamar Davis, Bryan Bautista, Kata Hay, and Ryan Quinn, Christina, after much hemming and hawing, saves Bryan, sending the others home.

And finally Team Adam takes the stage and sings “Your Song.” The last two contestants America has saved are Shalyah Fearing and Laith Al-Saadi, neither of which are a surprise. Between Owen Danoff, Brian Nhira, Caroline Burns, and Nate Butler, Adam is saving Owen, making him the final member of the top 12.

There is a lot of great talent in this top 12. Christina has been angling all season for it to be a year where a female coach can win, and with her team, she has a good chance of it. But that’s not counting the others out, as they could just as easily win, but Pharrell seems to have the weakest team this season.

Image Credit: YouTube

The Voice, Season 10 – Live Playoffs, Night 1

TheVoice041116For the first night of the live playoffs on this season of The Voice, it will be Team Blake and Team Christina facing off. All contestants on their teams will perform. In addition they are each being allowed to bring back one “comeback artist.”

Paxton Ingram of Blake Shelton’s team is up first. He is singing “How Deep Is Your Love” and wants to get the whole audience involved. But first, he teaches his coach how to do the Nae Nae. He has some great infectious energy. Christina Aguilera says that’s what she came for – to be entertained, Pharrell Williams thinks he had his moment, and Adam Levine says it looked like his was having the time of his life. Blake doesn’t think we’ve ever seen anything like that on the show before.

Team Christina’s Ryan Quinn, whom she stole from Team Adam, is up next. He’s singing “I’m Not the Only One,” and she wants him to not be afraid to be a little vulnerable, encouraging him to feel a time he was cheated on. The advice works. After a standing O by the judges, Pharrell says it was a performance where you have to give it up. Adam is so happy because he saw what he wanted to before. Christina notes that vocally he can do anything.

Katie Basden of Team Blake is singing “Georgia Rain,” and it has her coach making comparisons to Carrie Underwood. He wants her to end on a big note because she’s the rangiest singer in the competition. She seems like she’s rushing the music a little bit. Pharrell asks if she feels she was born to do this, and she says she wants to stand up there and tell a story. It feels to Adam like she’s already a big country star. Blake notes if her voice is any indication of the future of country music, it looks really good.

Katy Hay is up next for Team Christina. She’s singing “(You Make Me Feel Like a) Natural Woman.” Her coach hears a Janis Joplin vibe in her. She wants to eliminate the vibrato, but it’s hard as she’s a yodeling champion. Even with the first few lines of her performance, the vibrato is still there. Pharrell says it was almost like she had a barometer reading the room. Adam compares it to an exorcism. Christina finds the way she builds up a song so amazing.

Christina’s comeback artist is Nick Hagelin who had previously been on Team Pharrell. She was the first one to turn for him in the Blinds. He’s singing “Stay.” He knows it’s his turn to earn his place here. He debuts a freshly-shaved head for his performance. Pharrell says he deserves to be on the show, and he ended up on the right team. Adam says they are all fans of his as a human being and artist. Christina believes he proved why she brought him back.

Joe Maye was originally on Team Christina, but Blake stole him for his own team. He’s singing “Long Train Runnin’.” Blake feels he can fit into that Bruno Mars space. He instructs him to hold out the notes in the chorus at least one time so people know he can do it. He’s on fire singing this song. Christina says she hadn’t seen that fire in them since their duet. Blake was thrilled to get him to begin with, and now he’s feeling like he has a shot to win this thing.

Team Blake is up again with Adam Wakefield. He’s singing “Seven Spanish Angels.” Blake wanted him to have a song that could capitalize on his sound. He wants him to stop throwing away words while he’s singing. Adam is a performer that can really draw you in. Adam Levine says he is his favorite right now in the competition. Blake can only think of three singers in country music that have that same soulful blend that he has.

Tamar Davis is next up with her coach, Christina. She’s singing “Rise Up,” and her coach thinks it plays to the type of artist she needs to become. Tamar is refusing to go home at this point. She’s a little pitchy in parts but hits some great notes. Pharrell says she had a rainbow of range. Blake tells her that it’s the best performance of hers so far. Christina calls it a super-challenging performance.

It’s back to Team Blake for a performance by Mary Sarah. She’s singing “I Never Promised You a Rose Garden” and notes that it’s her grandma’s very favorite song. She wants to make some changes to it which Blake tells her is risky. The changes she has made to the song manage to update it a bit. Christina thinks there were some nice notes there towards the end. Adam thinks she came to life even more in her upper register. Blake notes that of his team she’s definitely one of the fan favorites.

Bryan Bautista of Team Christina is the next contestant to sing. He’s taking on “Pillowtalk” and struggles with it in rehearsals. Christina thinks it’s a bit too high for him. His confidence is off because he’s getting overwhelmed. He manages to pull it together for his live performance tonight. After a judges’ standing O Pharrell asks “Who knew?” Adam was completely blown away. Blake adds, “This guy’s smooth, too.” Christina says she is not surprised.

For Blake’s comeback artist, he chose Justin Whisnant who he eliminated in the Battle Rounds. He’s singing “Here’s a Quarter (Call Someone Who Cares),” and Blake notes it’s the first song he played electric guitar on. Justin makes the most of this second chance opportunity. Pharrell says he sang with a lot of passion and feeling. Blake feels he did the song justice and says Oklahoma is proud of him tonight.

Closing out the night is Alisan Porter of Team Christina. She’s singing “Crybaby” and says it’s the one song she did that went viral on YouTube before being on The Voice. Her coach wants her to tap into the grit she has for the song. It’s clear why they left this song for the end. It’s the best of the night. Adam is not surprised by how miraculous it was. Christina says she murdered the song.

Tune in Tuesday night for the remainder of the live playoffs with Team Adam and Team Pharrell.

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