Ladies and gentlemen, most of your 48 artists for season two of The Voice have now been revealed. Whose blind auditions won them the final spots and who just missed the cut? Read on…
We lead off with a 26-year-old guy called Ducky, which gives me all kinds of Pretty In Pink vibes. He’s hoping that making it onto a team will prove to his girlfriend he’s stable enough to marry, among other things. His rendition of “Tighten Up” gives us another one of those situations where all the coaches are pointing at each other but not doing anything themselves. Carson wonders aloud why Adam isn’t biting, but Adam explains that it was good enough to provoke conversation, not good enough for them to push their buttons (especially, one figures, with so few slots remaining).
The next artist also goes by one name: he’s 23-year-old Jonathas, who’s brought his wife and two young kids along. He explains that music basically taught him the English language after he left Brazil at a very young age, and this would be his version of the American Dream. I think he’s got that one in hand, as his version of “U Got It Bad” has girls swooning from the first word out of his mouth. Adam has no idea what Cee Lo is waiting on, but the big guy finally pushes his button, only to see Christina decide to challenge him at the last minute. “I thought that was a prank. I thought that was actually Usher,” Cee Lo says, before Christine shows us her dance moves. Is anyone else a little creeped out when she says “I want to mold you” complete with hand gestures? Adam is entirely too amused by their competitive banter, which causes Christina to scold him again. In the end, Jonathas chooses Christina.
Monique Benabou is next, and she’s brought her parents; she explains that her mother is a breast cancer survivor and that she’s “had to grow up a little faster” because of that health crisis. She brings out Kelly Clarkson’s “Mr. Know It All” and after Carson wonders what Christina is waiting on, she finally pushes her button. Christina gets Monique uncontested, and Monique is clearly over the moon at this, as she should be. “Even though Christina and I want to kill each other sometimes, I still think she’s hands-down the best female vocalist of our generation,” Blake says. “She’s your coach, how excited are you about that? She’s amazing,” Adam concurs. Aw, it’s a coach bonding moment of sorts.
Carson gets the drop on Hollywood street performer Naia Kete, who auditions with a song I can’t stand (that’s Bruno Mars’ “The Lazy Song”) but gets Blake’s vote almost instantly. Cee Lo pushes his button not long after, and she tells him “you push all my buttons,” leading Blake to remark that “I’m already screwed.” Adam agrees with a grin and a spot-on wisecrack: “That’s the first time I’ve heard that overt flirtation coming from the other person.” Yet although Naia loves Cee Lo, she goes with her gut instinct and chooses to join Team Blake.
31-year-old Erick Macek arrives with not just his hopes but those of his parents on his shoulders. His version of “Free Fallin'” is actually somewhat catchy, and because it sounds a bit country, everyone starts looking at Blake. Unfortunately, no one has a spot for Erick on their team.
The uniquely named Charlotte Sometimes is next to sing, after nearly losing the ability to do so after being diagnosed with a condition involving the degeneration of her jaw. She has a really different sound to her take on OneRepublic’s “Apologize” that sounds almost masculine at points, but it draws the immediate attention of Adam and Blake. A few moments later, Christina and Cee Lo turn as well, making this another four-chair artist. In the ensuing battle, Cee Lo suggests that Adam and Christina get a room, and offers them his place. “Bring it back to the talent,” Christina says after awkward laughter. Charlotte goes with Blake.
The next person to grace the stage is Broadway singer Tony Vincent, who’s appeared in productions of Rent, Jesus Christ Superstar, American Idiot and the Queen musical We Will Rock You. Tony’s chosen The Voice because of the show’s “integrity” and says that his heart really lies in pop-rock. Unsurprisingly, he goes to a Queen song – “We Are The Champions,” which the coaches did as part of their medley last season – but one can’t fault him when he’s obviously comfortable with the material. He draws Cee Lo’s attention, and joins Team Red Zone, which everyone else agrees is where he should be.
33-year-old Anthony Evans comes to us from Dallas (really, how many people from Texas end up on The Voice? There’s a lot of musical talent in the Lone Star State!). “The Voice asked me to be myself, and that’s the whole reason why I’m here,” he tells us before we get to hear his version of “What’s Going On.” When Cee Lo hesitates, Christina goes and steals Anthony from him, as she should, because he’s got a great set of pipes on him. Cee Lo reflects on almost pushing his button, leading Adam to say “I was going to push it for you,” and Blake to interject, “Never touch another man’s button.” Too late, Blake – Adam already did that three episodes ago.
Jamie Lono’s been hiding in a sandwich shop in Chicago, at least until his boss hands him that big red envelope. Then he busts out his guitar to take on Johnny Cash’s “Folsom Prison Blues,” a selection which gets Adam’s attention right away. Cee Lo gives Adam a little competition, suggesting the two should collaborate because Jamie makes sandwiches and he eats sandwiches. I doubt that has anything to do with it, but Jamie does end up choosing Cee Lo as his coach.
Arlington, Texas native Jamie Chambers steps to the microphone after Jamie, and gives us his version of The Zutons’ 1968 song “Valerie,” which has been done by the likes of Amy Winehouse, Bruno Mars and Glee. He falls victim to the “the competition is much tougher in season two” caveat. Nathan Anderson can’t get a spot with his version of Marc Cohn’s “Walking In Memphis,” and neither can Valerie Searles with her attempt at Melissa Etheridge’s “Come To My Window,” or Nathan Hesher with his cut of Nickelback’s “How You Remind Me.”
Next up is Justin Hopkins, who Carson feels somewhat “responsible” for since he’s appeared on Last Call with Carson Daly. “The Voice is really about the artist inside you,” Justin says, admitting that he hopes to work with Cee Lo. Like last season’s Javier Colon, he needs a break to make it feasible to continue pursuing a career in music. He brings his version of David Gray’s “Babylon,” which the audience is into pretty early on, but the coaches have to warm to. As it turns out, Justin gets his wish – Cee Lo is the first and only coach to turn for him. Adam calls Cee Lo’s resulting dialogue convincing and quips, “I want to be on your team.”
Nicolle Galyon comes from Nashville, where people keep telling her that she’s going to have to play guitar rather than the piano if she’s going to succeed. She thinks otherwise, and has come to the show to prove that she’s right, even if it means facing her biggest fear. She’s on the piano for her take on “You Save Me,” which leads Adam to get that big, adorable grin on his face. He gives her a one-man standing ovation, jokingly calls his fellow coaches “stupid” for not picking her, and gets Nicolle on his team without a fight. Blake thinks Adam flustered Nicolle and adds that the Maroon 5 front man does the same thing to him. You and the entire female population of Planet Earth, Blake.
Off-camera, Ashley De La Rosa joins Team Christina, Jordan Rager and Alyx join Team Blake, and Karla Davis joins Team Adam. (I will take a moment again to express my dislike of the fact that we don’t get to see all the successful blind auditions in their entirety.)
Next is Sanger, Texas native Eric Tipton, whose size has played “a giant role” in how he’s perceived, so he thinks auditioning blind is “a major advantage.” His version of “You Make My Dreams” has Blake and Cee Lo’s ears perking from the first notes played by The Voice band, and Cee Lo playing air band for good measure, but still nobody turns around for Eric. This makes me a little bit sad.
As we wind down, we meet Dallas native Mathai (this is the episode for people with single names, apparently). She’s brought her parents as well, which leads me to want to take a moment to clap for all the supportive parents out there, both on this show and off. I know a lot of people who haven’t had families supportive of their career aspirations, so thanks to all The Voice parents, spouses, and siblings out there for standing by your artists!
The results of Mathai’s blind audition are almost completely spoiled by the commercial bumper. Her take on Adele’s “Rumour Has It” has Adam hitting his button almost right away, but he’s not alone. All the guys want her on their teams; Christina is the lone holdout. “We are looking at a star right here,” Blake proclaims. Adam replies that it took him only eight seconds to hit his button, and Mathai joins Team Adam. (Yes, I’m waving my Team Adam cheerleader flag for just a moment.)
But wait! There are still open spots! Yep, there’s a fifth night of blind auditions to be had. As we wrap up, here are some statistics from this episode:
Number of times Adam swears: 1 (7 total this season)
Number of appearances by Purrfect the Cat: 1 (6 total this season)
Number of Cee Lo commercials during the show: 1
There you have it. We now know who will make up most of our four teams. With the near-complete rosters in front of you, who’s your early favorite team? See you next Monday as we begin the battle rounds!
(c)2012 Brittany Frederick/Digital Airwaves. All rights reserved. No reproduction permitted.