(NEW YORK) — The Voice blind auditions continued on Monday night with Blake Shelton, Kelly Clarkson, John Legend and Gwen Stefani continuing to build their teams.
As the coaches worked to finalize their teams, with Legend seemingly having to have the strongest one, Shelton pulled a stunning upset and landed the biggest artist of the night.
Here are some of the highlights from Monday’s show:
Joana Martinez ia a 15-year-old Miami, Florida art school student who was voted “Most likely to win The Voice,” and she moved one step closer on Monday. Her version of The Weeknd’s “Call Out My Name” convinced Kelly, Gwen and Blake turned their chairs around. One-by-one, each coach offered their argument for why Joana should join his/her team. Gwen was amazed at how well the teen connected with the song, as well as her command the stage. Kelly thought it was a great vocal performance, but pointed out Joana’s habit of closing her eyes every now and then, something Kelly said needed to be fixed. Blake countered by insisting Joana keep on doing what comes naturally to her. During her pre-performance package, Martinez said she hoped Kelly would turn around, but ended up joining Team Blake instead.
A Los Angeles resident by way of Connecticut, Brooke Stephenson attended Berkeley College and majored in Music Business. However, after her first sales job, she changed course and became a performer. Brooke sees The Voice as the next chapter in her career, and after hearing her cover of Patty Griffin’s “Let Him Fly,” Kelly, Gwen and Blake agreed. Gwen touted her years of experience in the business, and Blake, as usual, bragged about how many artists he’s taken to the finals. However, it was Kelly who won in the end, stressing her age and experience, along with her insistence that she could “challenge” Brooke.
Jared Herzog’s girlfriend is a big Voice fan. She’s also a fan of Jared, who, as a Valentine’s Day gift, promised her that he’d audition for the show. In addition to his girlfriend and family, joining Herzog to lend their support, season nine winner Jordan Smith also sent Jared a video message, wishing him luck. The 21-year-old Niceville, Florida native didn’t disappoint, getting Blake, John and Gwen to turn their chairs around with his soulful take on Dan + Shay’s “Speechless.” Gwen admired Herzog’s ability to “tell the story from [his] heart,” but it was Legend’s observation that the young artist took “the whole audience on a journey” was what convinced Jared to join Team Legend.
Soul-pop artist Matt New is a 29-year-old from Midland, Texas who put his music career on hold when he unexpectedly became a dad at the age of 18. Now, with more free time to pursue a music, Matt is ready to take his career to the next level. Blake and Gwen immediately turned around, followed at the very last minute by John, with his rendition of “Sunflower,” from Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. Gwen said Matt had “star quality,” but thought she could help his personality come out. Kelly, a fellow Texan, noted their obvious connection, but John had the magic words, complimenting Matt’s “lovely” tone, to go along with his “versatility” and “power.” Legend picked up his second artist of the night.
Ricky Duran, the son of Guatemalan immigrants, is looking to turn his life around after a series of devastating events. His father committed suicide when Ricky was 22, and his mother passed away last year after a long illness. Duran now honors both his parents’ last wishes for him was to “live his best life and be happy.” Ricky’s mom and dad would have been proud to see their son get all four coaches to turn around with his moving version of “River,” by Leon Bridges. “You had us all from the beginning,” said Blake, who praised the 29-year-old’s stage presence. John said Duran “elevated the song”; Gwen called it a “tasteful performance; and Kelly was jealous of Ricky’s “rasp.” Ricky’s recollection that the first live concert he ever attended was by Stefani’s old band, No Doubt, had everyone thinking he’d pick Gwen, but in a major upset, he went with Blake.
The Voice returns with a one hour show on Tuesday at 8 p.m. ET.
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