The Voice recap: 'The Blind Auditions, Part 4'
Team Adam's finally coming together, while Gwen nabs a four-chair favorite
Maybe Blake Shelton should consider becoming a full-on triple threat and do stand-up in his spare time because the man is not afraid to hurt some feelings when it comes to slinging out zingers on The Voice. Adam Levine’s striped sweater game has been giving him material for days at this point, so while this show might be all about all the hopefuls laying it all out there to get a chair-turn at this stage, it’d be a shame let so many hilarious hot takes on his co-coach’s attire go to waste. Before we get down to business, then, let’s celebrate some of the funniest things he had to say about Adam’s garb tonight, shall we?
“Now that we’ve found Waldo, you can zip it?”
“Why is the Hamburglar even talking right now?”
“Don’t you wish since he’s dressed like a mime he would actually sound like a mime?”
Ahhh, good times.
In other news, before tonight, Team Adam was looking a little sparse, so he really needs a change of pace to match skill sets with Blake, Alicia Keys, and Gwen Stefani going past the blinds. He’s even at the point of being so un-picky that his central criteria has been reduced to wanting whoever will pick him over the rest. But alas, Adam’s a force to be reckoned with tonight as he wrangles in a whole new crop of contenders. “I always have a rough start, and then I win,” he says. Indeed, the numbers are stacking up to be more in his favor in this round. Ding ding ding!
Micah Tryba (24 – Wheaton, IL)
“I’m Every Woman” by Whitney Houston
This young veterinary school opt-out turned a cappella singer definitely has some, as Adam puts it, “pocket issues” to sort through before she can become a real contender on this thing. She might have the note reach and vocal strength going for her, but she does still fall flat on what should’ve been some pretty dynamic moments in the song. Covering Whitney Houston’s a challenge for anyone, though, and she’s got enough fluidity and note grip that Blake and Gwen think she’s a coaching catch. The two duke it out over who can help coach her in the right direction — with Blake even braving a ticket straight to the doghouse by saying, “I can’t say that I know what it’s like to be a girl, and Gwen can’t say that she knows what it’s like to win this show.” Turns out, he didn’t need to take it that far anyway, because Micah here had been planning to join Team Blake from the start. Oof.
Troy Ramey(32 – Sea Cliff, NY)
“Wild World” by Cat Stevens
Our first four-chair turn of the night comes in the form of this smooth singer, who vacillates from a full-bodied, almost pop-ready vocal straight into a folky growl. Even though he’s singing a full-on earworm that everyone can recognize, he manages to pepper it with his own style and runs, and he’s basically everything Brendan Fletcher from season 11 wished he could be. Everyone gives him a good sales pitch to join their team — Alicia calls him “cool,” which is high praise, while Adam even calls him a potential contender for the win — but Gwen basically tells him she won’t take no for an answer. She was physically moved by his emotional commitment to the song, which happened to be his late dad’s favorite, and believes they were meant to work together because of it. The fact that he was also an early fan of her work in No Doubt makes them a heaven-made match, really.
Ericka Corban(31 – Aberdeen, WA)
“Wade in the Water”
As easy as it might be to root for this full-time mother of four who wants to pursue her dreams for a change, there are just too many issues with her vocal consistency to hold any of the coaches’ attention. Alicia loved her lower register and thinks she has a natural “earthiness” about her, but she needs to hear more of that than the stretch effort that strains her voice beyond its richer tones.
Jack Cassidy (18 – Westlake Village, CA)
“One of Us” by Joan Osborne
There’s always at least one legacy on this show, isn’t there? Here we have a Partridge Family descendant — his grandma is Shirley Jones herself, and David and Shaun Cassidy are his uncles. Plucking from his ministry-friendly song list, he lands on this pop-spiritual hit, which allows him to unplug a bit with his piano. It’s not perfect, but the talent is in there — he sounds like a cross between The Fray and Sleeping at Last — and it’s a big draw for Alicia because in name and practice, she’s all about those keys. So, even though Adam praises his perfectly imperfect take on the number, he’s going with the Girl on Fire.
Kawan DeBose (30 – Miami, FL)
“Let’s Get it On” by Marvin Gaye
Oh my, my, we might have just found our crowd-pleaser of the season in Kawan DeBose. This R&B singer has been working his magic for years, but he’s ready for a bigger stage than piano bars, the church choir, and running backup for Ludacris and Mary J. Blige can give him right now. He’s pretty much the full package — soulful tones, excellent range, playful stage presence, classic intuition, and style for days. Blake and Gwen make formidable pleas for him to join their team, but Adam’s pulling out all the stops to get this recruit. “You are the number one priority on Team Adam if you come to me. Not number two, number one,” he assures him. Ultimately, the ball’s in Kawan’s court, but he’s done his homework before making his decision to join Adam’s team, saying, “Because I’ve rocked with this dude since Songs About Jane and because you have one of my favorite keyboard players in your band, P.J. Morgan, I pick Adam.” Yeahhhh, he’s already the one to beat, and Team Adam’s luck has officially changed.
Taylor Alexander (25 – Flowery Branch, GA)
“Believe” by Cher
Hey, Adam is always saying he wants to take a country singer to the top, and maybe this is the perfect opportunity. Because Taylor Alexander here has a background in genre-hopping, as he proves with his box-bending, country rendition of Cher’s classic song. What’s great about it, for Adam, is how transformative his arrangement of the melody is and how quickly he still recognized the title anyway. “You are so weird and wonderful — what was that?” he exclaims, happily accepting him onto Team Adam without any competition from the other three. Blake compares his style to BR549, which Adam’s never heard of, and promises to drop the feud ruse to offer some friendly advice here and there when Adam needs some guidance on how to properly coach his southern style moments. It’s a win-win, then. Let’s just hope we get to hear him take on at least one punk song this season just to hear what his halcyon days in a grunge band might’ve been like, huh?
Gaby Borromeo (22 – New York, NY)
“Happy” by Leona Lewis
We get to hear a lot of stories about people who’ve put their musical careers on pause before staging a Voice-based comeback, but they’re usually not this young. Gaby started her full-on career in music when she was 15 and was inches from sealing a record deal in New York before things became frustrating and she took a job as a waitress. But she’s ready to give it another go at the ripe old age of 22, and while she’s a little whispery at first, she manages to burst from her shell midway through and catch the attention of three coaches. Ultimately, Adam sways her over to his team by pointing out her flaws as well as her strengths and assuring that she can get to the end zone with the right help (from him, that is). It’s a no-brainer.
Griffin Tucker (14 – Dallas, TX)
“Heartbreak Hotel” by Elvis Presley
A lot of kids have made it through this season’s blind auditions, and this boy certainly seems to have the personality and panache to match wits with the rest and best. He’s got gobs of experience — and plays virtually every instrument known to man — but ultimately his song is just a little too stiff to turn any chairs. Blake does think he’s inches away from being ready, though, so they encourage him to come back soon.
Missy Robertson (34 – Sacramento, CA)
“Scars to Your Beautiful” by Alessia Cara
Sometimes a song just fits with a performer’s pipes, and that’s certainly the case with Missy as she tackles Alessia Cara’s radio jam here. Sure, there are broken notes here and there, but she’s got a lot of power and purity in her voice and Alicia thinks she can help her grow as an artist. Blake’s dimples are no match for Alicia’s grip on the pro-positivity message, so, despite the fact that Blake makes a compelling pitch that she’d be one of a kind on his team, she goes with Alicia.
Aaliyah Rose (14 – Provo, UT)
“Rise Up” by Andra Day
Aaliyah Rose has been doing her darnedest to get some attention with her YouTube covers, and she’s at least been successful at catching Meghan Trainor’s ear — she even gets a warm good luck video in return for the flattery before her audition. And her performance starts out smooth and soulful enough to get Gwen’s attention. Thanks to careful editing, we don’t get to hear her slip too much, although Gwen does tell us she could hear when nerves got the better of the teen singer, but Gwen’s not bothered by the slip because when she was on, she was on. Gwen can work with that, and, besides, she’s been hoping to snag a young pop starlet in the making all this time.
Josh West (17 – Glendale, AZ)
“Ordinary World” by Duran Duran
Another four-chair turn comes around for musician Josh West, who’s been songwriting and performing with his dad for years. He’s definitely built by the plethora of ’90s bands that have inspired him, so he’s got the most common bond with Gwen, who, ya know, was in one. Meanwhile, Alicia’s heaping praise on the “strength and tone and roundness” he displays in his bountiful performance, and Blake’s, um, also a fan of the ’90s… or something. But even though Adam’s pitch is the lamest — he says he married his wife because she’s very into that decade somehow — Josh digs it that Adam knows he can fill a room without screaming into the mic, and that’s what wins the day. Overall, a pretty good day for Team Adam.
- Team Adam: Johnny Hayes, Mark Isaiah, Jesse Larson, Julien Martinez, Kawan DeBose, Taylor Alexander, Gaby Borromeo, Josh West
- Team Gwen: Joshua “JChosen” Hunter, Stephanie Rice, Savannah Leighton, Brandon Royal, Troy Ramey, Aaliyah Rose
- Team Alicia: Anatalia Villaranda, Felicia Temple, Autumn Turner, Lilli Passero, Quizz Swanigan, Jack Cassidy, Missy Robertson
- Team Blake: Lauren Duski, Brennley Brown, Aliyah Moulden, Ashley Blake, Casi Joy, Micah Tryba