The Voice 9 – Live Blog and Recap – The Blind Auditions Part 3 (VIDEO)
Welcome to the live blog and recap for The Voice 9, “The Blind Auditions Part 3”! Coaches Blake Shelton, Adam Levine, Gwen Stefani and Pharrell Williams continue to fill out their teams, as the competition heats up!
Blake is certainly the coach in the lead right now, as he’s got two really strong, potential finalists in the form of Blind Joe and Barrett Baber. But the other coaches are catching up, as Adam has James Dupre and Jordan Smith, while Gwen has Ellie Lawrence and Pharrell has Siahna Im. So each coach has at least one solid, potential live show act. But will anyone get a four-chair turn tonight? Is the winner among tonight’s auditioning artists?
Keep it locked right here, as I’ll be updating with commentary, results, and videos as soon as they become available!
Let’s get this show on the road!
-We open with a quick preview of what’s to come tonight, including that one contestant that has Gwen Stefani in tears. Should be a good show tonight.
MORGAN FRAZIER opens the show!
-Morgan talks about wanting to be a singer since she was a little girl. When she was little, she told her father she wanted to make a CD, so her parents made whatever sacrifices they needed to make in order to get her career started. In fact, her CD ended up selling over 30,000 copies! Before long, she got courted by a manager who promised to hook her up with world-class songwriters, and although that didn’t pan out the way she planned, it marked the first time she set out on her own to make it in the industry. I like her already. Please be good!
-Morgan sings “I Want You To Want Me” by Cheap Trick, and this is right up Blake’s alley, honestly. She’s got a great voice with an utterly delightful, smooth tone, and considerable control. She’s good on the guitar too, offering up a mellow, country-tinged interpretation of the classic rock track. Gwen is the only coach to turn around for about 90% of the performance…until Blake hits his button at the last moment, sending Gwen into a fit. She even approaches the stage to try and warn Morgan against Blake’s attempts to seduce her. But it’s pretty much all over once they learn Morgan is from Nashville.
GWEN AND BLAKE TURN THEIR CHAIRS!
-Gwen hit her button because she thought Morgan delivered a brilliant rendition of the song. She then goes right back to the “I started my band when I was 17 years old, and I wrote all my own songs” argument. You know, I think Blake wins artists to his team precisely because he tailors his pitch to each artist, whereas Gwen mostly just repeats pitches one after the other. Blake makes a hell of a point when he refutes Gwen’s story about going to an Emmylou Harris concert by saying, “Gwen goes to country concerts, but I put on country concerts.” Morgan says she can only go with her gut…
MORGAN FRAZIER CHOOSES TEAM BLAKE SHELTON!
-Gwen promises she’s going to try and steal Morgan later, noting how mad she is about Blake stealing her. Dude, you just have to step your argument game up. (Okay, not exactly. Morgan states she was always going to pick Blake, since he’s been her hero since the days when he had a mullet)
AMANDA AYALA is up next!
-Amanda talks about growing up around classic rock, thanks to her parents raising her on that music, which she claims has more heart than music today (to which I respond, you’re looking in the wrong places if you can’t find music with heart today). She then discusses her first rock band, Dead End, detailing how hard she’s pursued a career in the music industry. She’d love to work with Gwen, since she knows what it’s like to be a female rocker. Naturally, she’s been watching The Voice since Season 1, so even being on the show is a huge deal to her. That said, she needs more coaching than her mother can offer.
-Amanda sings “Mississippi Queen” by Mountain, and while the coaches all seem to seriously be considering it, none of them hit their buttons for the majority of the song. She sounds good too. Not perfect, but a little rough around the edges. Still, there’s really something to work with here, in my opinion. Blake, Pharrell and Adam talk it over from their seats, and come to a conclusion to all hit their buttons at the same time. Unfortunately, the only coach who doesn’t hit her button is the one she really wanted.
BLAKE, PHARRELL AND ADAM TURN THEIR CHAIRS!
-Gwen asks how Amanda even knew to sing a song like that, and Amanda notes how she was raised on classic rock. Adam points out to Blake that Amanda said “classic rock” and not “country”. Adam and Blake argue back and forth, praising her for being 17-years-old, and nothing the massive amounts of potential she has. Pharrell just sort of hangs back, saying Amanda should choose the coach she wants. Amanda says she thought she knew what she wanted, coming in, but now she’s not so sure. So Pharrell asks which coach she thought she wanted, and Amanda promises to reveal that after she makes her pick.
AMANDA AYALA CHOOSES TEAM ADAM LEVINE!
-So Amanda reveals that Gwen was the choice she wanted, leaving Gwen feeling remorseful. Of course, Gwen admits that she was looking for something different for her team. Still, I wouldn’t say it’s out of the cards for Gwen to steal her if she gets cut at some point.
-We then get a fashion segment with Christina Grimmie. Do they actually sell any of this stuff at Kohl’s? Isn’t it just a glorified department store, not a high-end clothier? I know almost nothing about fashion, which is probably surprising considering how much I love commerce.
JEFFERY AUSTIN! is up next!
-Jeffery talks about how each of his family members helped him get here, particularly his father, who sadly passed away due to complications from an enlarged heart. He wished his father were here to see this, since he’s essentially missed out on seeing his son develop his talent. That includes a lot of high school musicals. However, when he got to college, he studied public relations rather than music, since he still had some major insecurities. But after watching The Voice last season, he felt he HAD to audition, even though it’s been six years since he’s performed on any sort of major stage of any kind. Here’s hoping he’s great!
-Jeffery sings “Lay Me Down” by Sam Smith, and it’s a really impressive vocal. I think he needs work in the performance aspect, but even Jeffery admitted this in his interview. Gwen hits her button, but she’s ultimately the only one, although I don’t know why. Jeffery seemed like the kind of singer Adam would jump at the chance to mentor. This was impressive stuff.
GWEN STEFANI TURNS HER CHAIR!
-Jeffery tells Adam his concert was the first he’d ever been to, while also noting his other influences include Sam Smith and John Legend. Adam feels really stupid for not turning now, and Blake admits he has no excuse for not turning at all. Gwen applauds him for tackling such a difficult song. Pharrell, meanwhile, congratulates him for making it onto the show. For her part, Gwen has no idea why the hell no one else pressed their buttons. Adam explains that he has to “take it easy,” while Pharrell says he didn’t push because he already has someone like Jeffery on his team. Blake fears the other coaches may come to regret not pressing their buttons.
JEFFERY AUSTIN IS ON TEAM GWEN STEFANI!
-Good on Jeffery for getting the coach he wanted! I think it’ll be a good fit.
LYNDSEY ELM is up next!
-Lyndsey studied kinesiology, the study of human movement, but she went to work at her family’s business after college in order to pay off her student loans. However, while she’s been into music for years, she’s always been more of an athletic person. But when she got a guitar for her graduation present, she rediscovered her love of music, playing gigs and picking up the microphone on a more permanent basis. She fights back tears when recounting how much her family has sacrificed to give her this life, in a touching moment. Lyndsey hopes to work with Pharrell, since she believes he’ll understand the type of artist she wants to be, and the kind of music she wants to make. Fingers crossed!
-Lyndsey sings “Lips Are Movin'” by Meghan Trainor, and this is instantly one of my favorite auditions this season. I thought the production was setting her up to be a fodder audition to fill time, but I actually think she could be a true contender to go far. Her arrangement was just so refreshing, and she has charisma and stage presence for days! Gwen turns, and she’s quickly followed by Adam and Pharrell. Blake holds out til nearly the end, but he eventually hits his button too!
LYNDSEY ELM EARNS A FOUR-CHAIR TURN!
-Gwen praises Lyndsey, saying she sees similarities with herself. In response, Lyndsey notes how she’s grown up idolizing Gwen. Pharrell appeals to the songwriter in her. Meanwhile, Adam appeals to her backstory, saying that he also played basketball before transitioning into music. Blake tries to piggyback on this approach by saying he used to be called “Hook Shot Shelton”. He then praises her for her “Freddy Krueger” hat, which Adam takes issue with, since Freddy kills people in their sleep. “But he was also a movie star!” Blake states. Ultimately, the choice comes down to Lyndsey…
LYNDSEY ELM CHOOSES TEAM GWEN STEFANI!
-Wow! I wasn’t expecting that. I think this was a bit of a smart choice, since Gwen is likely to fight for her and give her a lot more chances to develop than the other coaches would have, probably. Lyndsey says she was thinking Pharrell, but Gwen’s words really spoke to her.
JOE MAYE is up next!
-Joe talks about his very big family, particularly his nephew, to whom he serves as a big brother figure (the video of them hanging out together is adorable!). He recalls how his first real job was on an entertainment cruise ship, which helped him get used to performing, although it was super corny. As a kid, Joe admits he never would have imagined being on this platform, performing for these amazing coaches. He’ll be taking a big risk though, performing a hit from the 1980s that isn’t really thought of as a singer’s song. Still, he seems like a cool guy, and I can’t help but root for him.
-Joe sings “Word Up” by Cameo, and it’s one of the most fun performances of the Blind Auditions so far. Unfortunately, I don’t think this is the right song for a blind audition. I mean, the coaches can’t see any of his energetic movements, or how he’s working the crowd. Just sing, dude! I mean, he’s got a good voice, but his movement just robbed him of breath. That said, I think Joe is a singer who could easily come back and turn all four chairs with a different song. He’s clearly got the talent to make that happen.
-Pharrell was puzzled by the song choice, but Joe explains that he’s a big fan of Cameo and that style of 80s pop, and wanted to do more with that than Cameo did. Adam actually liked the song choice, but felt the dancing prevented Joe from doing all he could with the vocal. Gwen more or less agrees, and Blake is actually kind of sad to see him go. But they’re all holding out for acts that really move them, so I get it.
-Carson Daly is on his way to meet our next contestant…
MANNY CABO is up next!
-Manny is a professionally-published photographer, but his heart is in music. He grew up in the 80s, loving rock music and wanting to pursue it professionally, ever since he first started playing drums in fifth grade. However, he didn’t seriously start pursuing singing until his first year of college. Still, he’s been in a series of cover bands, and he dreams of rocking the stage, and proving for his wife of fifteen years, and their beautiful nine-year-old daughter (who, touchingly, breaks down in tears when talking about how proud she is of her dad, and how much he means to her). Manny fights back tears when talking about how he’s fought to provide for the people he loves, saying he’s missed mortgage payments before. But he wants to show people that 45-years-old isn’t too late to pursue your dreams. Go get’em, Manny!
-Manny sings “Here I Go Again” by Whitesnake, and Adam is quick to turn for him. Blake follows not long after. Manny’s daughter embracing her mother in relief is one of the cutest backstage family moments on this show, in my opinion. Manny is a total badass, delivering some really strong vocals, and one of the most impressive falsettos I’ve heard this season. Dude is a total throwback, and I’m ready to jump on the bandwagon! All the coaches are too, honestly, as Pharrell and Gwen hit their buttons too!
MANNY CABO EARNS A FOUR-CHAIR TURN!
-Blake says Manny is like a hair rocker, which is funny since he has no hair. He then throws Pharrell and Adam under the bus by saying you should never trust a man who rolls his pants up. Blake declares that Manny seems like a real man’s man, and he needs a man. Pharrell loved the dynamics of Manny’s voice, while Gwen loved the control Manny displayed. Adam says that hearing Manny sing with the power and presence in his voice really “ignited” him, recalling his own youth. “This is going to sting, if I can’t have you on my team, man!” Adam declares. But Manny feels the pressure, stating he has “four icons” staring at him.
MANNY CABO CHOOSES TEAM ADAM LEVINE!
-I’ve rarely seen Adam this happy to win a contestant, nor have I seen many families as happy as Manny’s backstage. I can’t help but root for this guy. Go Manny!
WATCH AND DISCUSS: 45-Year-Old Photographer Captures Coaches’ Hearts on The Voice 9 (VIDEO)
MADI DAVIS is up next!
-Madi is a 16-year-old who suffered from damaged eardrums as a child. She needed to have reconstructive eardrum surgery in order to correct her hearing, since many of her teachers assumed she was slow, not realizing it was simply that she couldn’t hear what they were saying. Once she had the corrective surgery, she started doing better in school, and even picked up a healthy love for singing, even joining the Children’s Choir of Greater Dallas. Her family is here to support here, and I’ve got a great feeling about her.
-Madi sings “It’s Too Late” by Carole King. I LOVE HER VOICE SO MUCH! It’s got this lilting, lovely quality to it that’s like a more demure Carole King. She’s just got something special going on, and I think Pharrell needs to fight like hell for her, because she has the potential to be the crown jewel of his team if he gets her. Naturally, Gwen and Pharrell hit their buttons, so this ought to be interesting.
GWEN AND PHARRELL TURN THEIR CHAIRS!
-Gwen and the coaches freak out when they learn she’s only 16. However, Pharrell loves Madi’s style more than anything else. Gwen agrees, stating that Madi is a natural up on that stage. But she does warn against Pharrell’s charms, saying some younger contestants are blindsided by his face. Pharrell is flattered, but says his face isn’t what caused him to press the button, he simply heard something that compelled him to press his button. Adam sits over by Blake as Pharrell and Gwen both approach Madi to make their cases right in front of her. Ultimately, Madi makes her choice…
MADI DAVIS CHOOSES TEAM PHARRELL!
-Great pick! I can’t wait to see what she and Pharrell do together!
CALEB LEE HUTCHINSON is up next!
-Oh man, Blake could have yet ANOTHER potential contender on his team if he gets this guy, because America is going to LOVE this kid. He’s a real charmer, talking about wanting to be a ninja after seeing The Karate Kid movies as a youth, before dryly joking about what a joy he is to be around. He then does IMPRESSIONS of popular country singers, to make him even more memorable, before his audition begins! Caleb recalls opening for such singers as Bo Bice, but states he wants to be on The Voice to show what he could do as a headliner. If he can actually sing, Blake might have something here, because he’s already bringing to mind memories of Jake Worthington.
-Unfortunately, looks like I put the cart before the horse. Caleb sings “The Dance” by Garth Brooks, and not a single coach turns. And I get why. This is an uneven performance from the word “go,” and it’s not because Caleb is untalented, it’s simply a matter of Caleb having chosen the wrong song. If he comes back, and gets a little more experience under his belt, he could really have something to offer this competition.
-The coaches seem to really like Caleb, with Blake in particular noting what a cool country voice he has, with its depth. The coaches are all shocked to learn he’s only 16, of course, with Blake calling him a big boy (Caleb: “Thank you, sir. So are you!”). Unfortunately, Blake felt Caleb was just under his full potential. Still, Pharrell hopes Caleb comes back when he’s gotten a little more experience, and so do I.
-Montage time! Team Pharrell gets young pop singers Riley Biederer and Daria Jazmin, while Team Adam picks up R&B singer Cassandra Robertson.
CHRIS CRUMP is up next!
-Chris Crump talks about his development as an artist, joking about how the first CD he owned was from Creed, prompting his mother to freak out about how her baby was changing. He also details the Homer Simpson-like laundry list of jobs he’s had over the years. However, he’s always wanted to be a musician. In fact, he’s so dedicated to making it on The Voice, he actually left his own wedding reception to be here at the blind auditions! And his wonderful wife is supporting him all the way!
-Chris sings “Thinking Out Loud” by Ed Sheeran, and earns the quickest four-chair turn of the season so far (the coaches are really four-chair turn happy this season). The verses seem like they’re pitched a bit low for this song, but his choruses are absolutely terrific. I don’t think it’s a perfect performance, but it’s definitely a strong one. I’m genuinely interested to find out which coach he’ll pick, because I feel he’d be a perfect fit for just about any team.
CHRIS CRUMP EARNS A FOUR-CHAIR TURN!
-Blake loves Chris’s upper register, although he jokingly states that the performance was better before the coaches started turning, since he was quickly overwhelmed with shock and/or joy. Pharrell thinks Chris has things he can work on, but likes Chris a lot. Gwen more or less says the same thing, saying he sings from his heart. Adam, meanwhile, wants to work with Chris to help him overcome whatever shortcomings are holding him back.
CHRIS CRUMP CHOOSES TEAM BLAKE SHELTON!
-Blake admits he’d have broken down after getting a four-chair turn as well, while Chris explains that he got emotional because he could finally see the life he and his wife envisioned for themselves. I thought picking Blake was a surprising choice, but not a bad one, honestly. He’s unique on that team, in ways he wouldn’t have been on the others.
TYLER DICKERSON is up next!
-Tyler works with his dad, but wants to pursue music full-time. He recalls first getting into music after an impromptu performance at a local store. Things just took off from there, with his father even quitting his job and making Tyler his full-time priority. Tyler even got signed to a label and was managed personally by John Rich, from Big & Rich. Unfortunately, the deal fell through when the label was closed down, leaving him to go back to his old life. But this is his second chance, and with a lifetime of experience under his belt, he could open more than a few eyes (and ears). He even gets last-minute encouragement in the form of a video from John Rich himself!
-Tyler sings “Hard to Handle” by The Black Crowes, and this was an awesome performance. Tyler is a very natural performer, and his voice is absolutely unwavering, in the best possible way. There weren’t any nerves in his voice, and he had perfect control the whole way through. I’m genuinely surprised that only one coach hits his button, since I thought he’d be a strong fit for all four teams, honestly.
BLAKE SHELTON TURNS HIS CHAIR!
-Blake thinks the other three coaches are crazy for not pushing their buttons. Of course, Blake instantly recognizes Tyler, asking him if he was the fifteen-year-old kid from Nashville who had a record deal. Now Adam really wishes he’d pushed his button. Tyler gives his story about the failed record deal all those years ago as a teenager, and how he got in a severe accident, flipping his truck several times. He tearfully states that he had it all, but it was all taken away. However, now is his second chance. Gwen seems genuinely moved by this, and Blake is quick to get up and hug Tyler, saying they should sing some Travis Tritt together.
TYLER DICKERSON IS ON TEAM BLAKE SHELTON!
-Tyler celebrates with his family, while Blake tells the other coaches how he knows Tyler: turns out, rumblings within the industry all those years ago suggested that Tyler was going to be the next Travis Tritt. Here’s hoping it can actually pan out this time.
JUBAL AND AMANDA close the show!
-Finally! The return of duos! Jubal and Amanda are a couple who have an extensive background in music, as Amanda teaches music lessons, while Jubal’s father was one of the pioneers of outlaw country (which has Carson starstruck, in a wonderful moment). Jubal talks about how hard it’s been to be a single parent, but says he wouldn’t trade any of it for the world, and adds that Amanda has been incredible to his little girl. To Jubal, Amanda is an incredible woman, and he feels there’s nothing they can’t accomplish together. For her part, Amanda fights back tears when talking about what this all means to her. They walk into the studio hand-in-hhand, and this is so cute, I can’t even.
-Jubal and Amanda sing “Seven Bridges Road” by The Eagles, and while I didn’t love it when it started, this quickly developed into a really strong audition. I don’t know what’s in the water, but Season 9 is on FIRE! Unfortunately, none of the coaches are hitting their buttons, which is puzzling to me, because this was one of the most refreshing performances of the night, to me. Eventually, Gwen and Pharrell turn their chairs, resulting in Amanda freaking out, since she was so into the song that she didn’t realize anyone had turned. Adorable.
PHARRELL AND GWEN TURN THEIR CHAIRS!
-Gwen likes their vibe, and talks about all the cute nicknames she’ll have for Jubal (whose real name is “Jubal Lee”). Pharrell turned because he was interested in seeing what he was hearing. He admits that there’s a lot to work on, but he’s very interested in what they could do with a little more work. Blake asks if they’re a couple, and Amanda admits that they are, and goes on to say they’ve only been performing together for 18 months. “Are you married?” Blake asks. “Not yet,” Amanda admits. “But some day.” To which Jubal responds, “Okay!” The crowd goes absolutely WILD as Jubal takes out a ring and drops to one knee. Amanda is flipping out, and it’s just such an amazing moment!
JUBAL PROPOSES TO AMANDA! AND SHE SAYS YES!
-This is an incredible moment, and Jubal wants to bask in it with Amanda a little longer. However, Adam says they can actually be married by Blake, who’s an ordained minister, believe it or not. “By the power vested in me by the state of California…who do you choose as your coach?” Adam asks.
JUBAL AND AMANDA CHOOSE TEAM PHARRELL WILLIAMS!
-The coaches all gather around to check out Amanda’s ring, then the duo goes backstage to embrace their family. I’m on such a happiness high right now!
-And that’s a wrap on tonight’s show? What did you think? Did the coaches make the right choices? Did the contestants? Sound off in the comments!
Until tomorrow night, thank you for hanging out and reading!