The Voice recap: Victor Solomon's Beyoncé finale performance brings the house down
It's the final night of performances on The Voice season 20 — that's right friends, tonight, after two rounds of singing, you'll be voting for the winner of this season. The winner! Already! Before we get to that announcement tomorrow night in the grand finale, the five remaining contestants — Team Blake's Cam Anthony and Jordan Matthew Young, Team Kelly's Kenzie Wheeler, Team Legend's Victor Solomon, and Team Nick's Rachel Mac — will battle it out with songs dedicated to someone special in their lives and an up-tempo number that shows off who they are as artists. Also, as a nice little treat, Blake Shelton performs his new single "Minimum Wage" and then is surprised with a video celebrating his 10 years on The Voice, complete with some nice visits from Team Blake members throughout the show's 20 seasons (that still seems insane) who thank him for the opportunities he gave them on the show and beyond. It's very sweet!
Okay, we have 10 finale performances to get to. Let's talk songs.
Team Kelly: Kenzie Wheeler, "Heartland" by George Strait
Kelly is still apologizing to Kenzie for blocking him from being able to choose one of his favorite country artists as a coach, but it seems like being on Team Kelly has really worked out for ol' Kenzie Wheeler. Plus, he tells Kelly that he's a fan of her, too, which is nice! Kelly has always thought Kenzie has a similar tone to George Strait, and Kenzie has been aching to do a George Strait song on the show, so the finale seemed like the perfect time. Kenzie gets to throw a little honky-tonk party up on stage, and it's another solid vocal from the country artist. Blake thought the "modulation in the middle was unexpected" and a smart choice, and Kenzie's own coach simply applauds him for reminding everyone what we've been missing without live music. Everyone's having a good time!
Team Legend: Victor Solomon, "I Can't Make You Love Me" by Bonnie Raitt
For his dedication song, Victor is singing to his girlfriend, Ciarra. He reads an insanely romantic letter to her and then sings... one of the saddest songs of all time. I mean... Okay, I guess? Victor's vocals are gorgeous on this song, and Nick Jonas is right — it's a classic and oft done on singing competitions, but Victor made some cool artistic choices to make it more of his own. His coach John Legend builds him up, too, telling his artist that he loves Victor's passion and how much personality and soul he put into the performance. He praises him for showing different sides of himself as an artist and putting "it all out there" every time he's on stage.
Team Blake: Jordan Matthew Young, "Key to the Highway," by B.B. King and Eric Clapton
It's our gravelly-voiced Wildcard Spot Winner! He seems the most surprised to be here, but his coach Blake Shelton isn't at all. He thinks he's authentic and believable in any genre he chooses to sing. For his finale up-tempo song, he's going for the blues, baby. This classic song is actually a perfect choice for Jordan in this moment: It's fun, it lets him show off his guitar skills, and his rasp and grit sound great on this track. John Legend praises him for bringing something different to the show this season; he's the only one in his lane, and it's fun to watch. Blake piggybacks on to that sentiment: "Thank you for rocking," he tells his artist. Jordan stands apart because of his whole vibe, but he's also "killing it vocally," says Blake.
Team Nick: Rachel Mac, "I Hope You Dance" by Lee Ann Womack
Rachel dedicates her song to her baby nephew Ezra, and she gives a sweet message to him about understanding the struggles he might go through being raised with a single parent, telling him to find comfort in his mom, her sister, who was influential in her life, too. It's hard to rag too much on the song choice because the intention behind it is so nice, but it isn't the most exciting pick. Still, Rachel sings it with so much care, and the arrangement makes it a little more pop than country, which suits her. Kelly Clarkson finds Rachel "captivating" and her voice "angelic." Clarkson adds she's especially drawn to the more intimate, sweet parts of Rachel's voice rather than the power. Rachel's coach Nick reminds everyone that not only is Rachel 16, but she was just a one-chair turn in the Blinds. She's come a long way, and Nick thinks this was "one of [her best performances" of the entire season.
Team Blake: Cam Anthony, "Stand Up" by Cynthia Erivo
Cam is using his dedication song to talk to "the visionary in all people" after being inspired by Napoleon Hill's whole "if you believe it, you can achieve it" idea and wanting to "stand up for peace and love." To embody this dedication, he's singing Cynthia Erivo's song from Harriet. Now, we've seen this song performed on that other singing competition a few times this season and while that version was an undeniably moving vocal, this version is a real performance. Cam navigates the intricate vocals of the song well, but where he really shines is in his stage presence and the full staging of this song. John Legend tells him that he is "so ready for this stage [and] any stage [he wants] to be on." He praises his "level of professionalism and performance ability." Cam's Coach Blake seems kind of emotional in his critique, noting that it's overwhelming after seeing that 10th-anniversary dedication video and knowing that here in his 20th season he's been lucky enough to get an artist "that may change everything for this show."
Team Kelly: Kenzie Wheeler, "Keeper of the Stars" by Tracy Byrd
Kenzie gets emotional reading his dedication letter to his small farming town of Dover, Fla. Have we ever seen this side of him before? His song is another classic country ballad, and it's another solid performance. If you're into it, you're into it, you know? Nick Jonas enjoyed hearing Kenzie's upper register get highlighted in this song; Kenzie used it with such "ease and brilliance" it was surprising he hasn't showcased it before. Kelly gives her artist one more self-confidence boost, reminding him that he sometimes doubts he can go bigger or higher in rehearsal and then surprises himself with how effortless it actually is.
Team Nick: Rachel Mac, "The Chain" by Fleetwood Mac
Dang! Rachel Mac is living her best life tonight! Not only has she moved on from Blake Shelton's powerpoints to Nick Jonas's powerpoints, but she also performs the hell out of this Fleetwood Mac song. She's giving it all vocally and physically. Lord knows I love a good hat toss, okay? John Legend says it was "so fun to watch" because of the energy level throughout, and she "physically [gave] everything to that performance." He also praises the song choice — it has such an inherent dynamic and journey to it, and Rachel used it to her advantage. Nick is a proud coach and likens the whole thing to going to a real, live concert — and a show he wouldn't want to leave to boot. He thought she just added "another layer to a dynamic set of performances" throughout the season.
Team Blake: Jordan Matthew Young, "Stay" by Rihanna featuring Mikky Ekko
Well, this is a surprise! I'm here for the huge risk Jordan is taking with this song, but I think it might've helped to have switched the order of his two performances to end on that great blues performance. Still, he sweetly dedicates this to his two grandmothers, Betty and Joy, and pulls out a cool arrangement to give a heartfelt performance. It's not his strongest vocal, but the unexpectedness of the whole thing might go far with people. Nick Jonas thinks the arrangement of the song was "impressive" and shows that Jordan "can do it all." Blake, too, loves that this showed "a completely different layer" of Jordan's skills and tells him that he "never cease[s] to amaze [him]."
Team Blake: Cam Anthony, "Wanted Dead or Alive" by Jon Bon Jovi
More song surprises! It's so refreshing to see artists do something unexpected and really go for it. Cam picks this Bon Jovi anthem because he wants to show everyone that he's having the time of his life and this song reminds him of playing Rock Band with his family. That's so cute! "If you don't win this thing, I'm setting the building on fire," Blake tells Cam. Again, cute, sort of? As with Jordan, I think the order of Cam's songs should've been switched, but this one still gets all four coaches up on their feet. Kelly Clarkson calls Cam "captivating" and "extremely gifted" and thinks he can "conquer" more than just the music industry if he wants. Coach Blake Shelton has run out of ways to call Cam a superstar, but his "we all know what we're witnessing here" gets the message across.
Team Legend: Victor Solomon, "Freedom" by Beyoncé ft. Kendrick Lamar
These are song choices, people! This is a tough song to sing — John warns his artist that it'll be hard to breathe because it calls for so much high energy — but Victor picks it because it allows him to show off all his tricks and sing a song with a message. Holy hell, does he perform this song. It'll go down in Voice history as one of the most unforgettable moments for sure — the leather gloves alone, you guys! — and Victor's coach John Legend doesn't hesitate to say it was "the best performance I've witnessed on this stage." Victor not only had to sing, but he rapped and performed killer choreography. John thought Victor showed "complete mastery of all three." Kelly Clarkson sums the moment up nicely by saying it was "freaking awesome."
And that's that for the Final Five of season 20. For a while, it's seemed like this season would be coming down to Cam Anthony and Kenzie Wheeler, but after tonight do we think there could be a surprise upset?