11:19pm PT by Jethro Nededog
'The Voice's' Christina Aguilera Sings Sera Hill's Praises (Video)
If you thought NBC's The Voice coaches were extremely picky last week, they were downright stingy with the button pushes on Monday’s episode. It was the final round of the blind auditions and each coach had only two or three more spots before reaching their team dozen.
Once the teams were complete, the coaches split the surprises down the middle. Adam Levine declared his team the strongest of the four. He may be right as his performers seemed to fit his M.O. from last season: Voices that fill a specific niche regardless of musical genre. In this final round, Adam picked up soul and blues singer Whitney Myer and beat-boxing soul singer Orlando Napier.
Cee Lo Green, too, seemed to stay in his comfort zone. I know it’s strange to use his name and “comfort zone” in the same sentence. He populated his team with unique artists like him who have some quirks. He chose garage rockers, The Shields Brothers? Enough said. In this final round, he also snatched up powerhouse vocalist Cheesa and R&B singer Wade.
The surprises came with Christina Aguilera and Blake Shelton’s choices. Last season, they both were very much tied to their specific genres: Blake’s country and Christina’s pop. Both coaches seemed as if they made conscious decisions to broaden the scope of their teams. Blake has some country and folk and that will always be his best selling point in snagging contestants. But, his team also has some indie rockers and soul/R&B singers. Blake's final blind audition round picks were newbie country singer Adley Stump and the nervous Jazz singer-songwriter Lex Land.
This year, Christina decided to broaden her team to what she refers to as vocalists. That was a very smart move as she could sell her vocal skills as opposed to just her pop appeal. Her team includes an opera singer, a folk singer, an indie rocker, and a country duo.
And after passing over several performers as the lone coach still to complete her team, Christina made a choice that made perfect sense for her. Sera Hill’s idols include, to borrow a phrase from Blake, vocal Olympians Beyonce and Mariah Carey. Her very skillful handling of Rose Royce’s “I’m Going Down” not only had Christina pushing her button, but also had the coach wanting to jump onstage to join Sera. Christina's other final blind audition choice was harmonica-playing baker Lee Koch.
Watch Christina sing along with her final team member on stage below.
Who do you think assembled the strongest team? Tell us in the comments section below.
Email: Jethro.Nededog@thr.com; Twitter: @TheRealJethro