The Blind Auditions, Part 6
It's the last night of the blind auditions and Blake, Shakira, Usher and Adam each have just one slot left to fill. With hundreds of hopeful artists having gone through the audition process, tonight just a lucky few will have the last shot at making a team - at least for this season. Here is everything you need to know as the blind auditions come to a close and we prepare for the battle rounds.
With the teams all but full, the pressure on the artists goes up.
The coaches will really need to hear something special to turn their chairs, so there is simply no room for anyone to make a mistake. Joe Trombino of New York finds this out when he performs Al Green's "Love and Happiness." He's got a little bit of funk and a little bit of soul, but he can't rouse any of the coaches to turn a chair. It's Al Green, you've gotta preach! But Joe is behind the beat and can't give the coaches the more, more, MORE that Usher was hoping to hear. The bar's going to be high tonight.
Other artists, even ones with power, suffer the same fate, particularly once teams are full and there is only one coach left. Adam turns down Melissa Neal singing Sara Bareilles' hit "Brave," Beau Cassidy performing Daft Punk's "Get Lucky" and Sheila Marshall taking on Sheryl Crow's "Strong Enough." Maybe earlier in the auditions a coach might have taken a chance, but not now.
There are still gems to be found.
Kaleigh Glanton of Wichita is the daughter of a professional classical guitarist and a fitness freak who works out maniacally in her garage. She and her dad perform in a duo, but this is her first time stepping out on her own. She has the crowd clapping along to her rendition of John Fogerty's "Have You Ever Seen the Rain?" and Adam wastes no time turning around. It looks like a sure get for Team Adam - until Shakira spins her chair. And then Blake punches in, followed by Usher at the last moment: a four-chair turn! "I'm quirky and you're a little quirky, we should quirk up!" Shakira says. Adam thinks she needs work, but Blake says she has a style that he loves; she just needs a spotlight. "Blake, what a salesman," Kaleigh's father says backstage. But it's a sales job that rings true as Kaleigh hops aboard Team Blake. The country star celebrates filling out his team by strutting in front of the other coaches, getting the crowd worked up before moonwalking back to his seat.
Brittnee Camelle, a nursing student from Georgia, sings Demi Lovato's "Skyscraper." She explains that her audition tonight is a risk: if her audition is successful, she'll lose her college scholarship. But this is her passion, and she's prepared to listen to her heart. She starts off a little slow; the coaches don't seem to know what to make of her. But the performance builds and builds, and Usher turns his chair. And then, when Brittnee seems to be on her last breath, Shakira pushes her button. "For real?" Usher says. Usher tells Brittnee he heard a willingness to take a risk and that's why he wants her on his team. Usher and Shakira are both smitten. It's a tough call. Brittnee agonizes and agonizes... but it's Usher. Shakira can't believe it. She pulled out all the stops to get Brittnee on her team. But what can you do? Usher's team is now full.
Lindsay Bruce is a country singer from the not-exactly-a-country-mecca city of Santa Rosa, California. She steps on stage to sing "Even If It Breaks Your Heart" by Eli Young Band. It's too bad Blake's team is full, but Adam and Shakira both turn their chairs. Shakira breaks out her "I'm also a female artist" line. Usher and Blake push her to choose Shakira, because... well, mostly to mess with Adam. The group sales pitch works as Lindsay goes with Shakira. The Colombian pop star's team is now full.
Sometimes, it's about attitude.
Caleb Elder, a 19-year-old doughnut shop employee, steps up to sing "Groove Me" by King Floyd, which is an interesting choice for a white guy from rural Virginia. Caleb hops around onstage, spinning and strutting. The kid's got moves. Adam, the last coach with a spot, turns his chair. Afterwards, Caleb hugs all the coaches and can't contain his excitement that Adam called him cool. Blake might have a little competition in his bromance with Adam. Could #Cadam be trending by next week?
Even if you don't make a team, go out and have some fun.
We've seen artists who don't make a team but are thrilled to have the chance to perform on The Voice stage anyway. Tonight, it's Beau Thomas' turn. The musician from Frisco, Colorado has a girlfriend, a stepdaughter and twin infants, so there is a lot riding on him. He sings Ray LaMontagne's "You Are the Best Thing," a tough song, and there is maybe a little too much style to get a chair turn. The coaches are waiting for a voice that is truly compelling, but they love Beau's attitude. Despite not making a team, Beau's excitement at not making a team is contagious. "Chair turn or not, that was a dream come true," he says afterwards. Well, why not.
With the teams topped off, the coaches are ready to bring on the battle rounds. Already some natural matchups suggest themselves, and it's clear the toughest part of the competition is just ahead. We're more than ready to see who wins, who gets stolen and who goes home... in fact we're already sitting on the edge of our spinning seats.