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Gwen Stefani on The Voice season 9, her co-coaches, and girl power: Interview

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Brian Bowen Smith/NBC

Those giant red thrones on The Voice hold a lot of power, and Queen Gwen will reign over a team this fall when she becomes the lone female coach. We checked in with the rock goddess about what it’s like hanging with fellow judges and competitors Adam Levine, Blake Shelton, and Pharrell Williams — and why girl power will totally rule this season.

What made you want to return as a coach for the second time?

I had no idea that I was going to be asked back! But I had such a great time [coaching season 7]. The guys are so fun. We have a great time off camera, too, just being in the talent compound with everyone hanging out. The vibe is so good here.

Do you have any pre-show routines? 

It’s mostly just hanging with my hair-and-makeup team, getting glammed up for the show. I’ll play them my new songs. And I FaceTime with my kids all the time. I don’t know what we would do without FaceTime. 

Which mentors are you most looking forward to working with?

Selena Gomez. She’s amazingly talented and has so much insight — she’s been a performer since she was so young. Rihanna is also coming on as a key adviser. I’m mostly looking forward to all the girl power!

The Voice is a huge hit, but it hasn’t produced any superstars. Why do you think people keep coming back to it?

The winners have all been remarkable performers with amazing voices, but the music world is so complex. It’s tough to break through. The benefit of this show is that audiences love to watch ordinary people have the national opportunity to showcase their talent. As a culture, we’re constantly rooting for the underdog, so that’s the real appeal of the show. 

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Want more? EW’s Fall TV Preview mega-issue has the scoop on 115 shows! Pick up your copy on newsstands now, or buy it here.

The Voice returns to NBC Monday at 8 p.m. ET.