'The Voice': Night Five Brings Another Four-Chair Turn

John Legend was very careful with his turns, with Gwen Stefani and Blake Shelton going head-to-head again.
Trae Patton/NBC
John Legend (left) and Blake Shelton on 'The Voice'

The Blind Auditions continued Monday on season 17 of NBC's The Voice. Coach John Legend took this night of auditions slowly, warming up to the auditioning artists and not turning very often. Coaches Gwen Stefani and Blake Shelton went head-to-head again, and Kelly Clarkson made some smart choices, landing one of the best artists of the night.

Fifteen-year-old singer Joana Martinez was the first artist to audition and ended up delivering one of the top performances of the evening. She surprisingly was only a three-chair turn, but even Legend, who did not turn for her, said that Martinez's rendition of “Call Out My Name” by The Weeknd was “near perfect.” Martinez went into the audition saying she wanted to work with Clarkson, so it was a bit of a surprise that she ended up on Team Blake. It seems likely that she might end up on Team Kelly in later rounds, though.

The next-best performance came from the second artist, whose tender cover of “Let Him Fly” earned her turns from Shelton, Stefani and Clarkson, with Legend sitting this one out as well. The audition came from Brooke Stephenson, a small-town singer-songwriter, who considered her genre Americana rather than country, which opened the door for a coach other than Shelton to land her. Clarkson was able to swoop in, and Stephenson joined Team Kelly.

The night delivered just one four-chair turn, awarded to Ricky Duran, whose emotional performance of “River” by Leon Bridges closed out the show. He was a strong storyteller and performer during his audition, and his technical skills were impressive, too. The coaches turned almost immediately for him. Duran joined Team Blake because of his winning record; he probably would have been a better fit on Team John or Team Gwen, though.

Zach Bridges was a straightforward country singer, who sang a Shelton song for his audition. Hoping to spice things up, Stefani turned along with Shelton. It was a valiant effort, but Bridges still went with Shelton. Stefani and Shelton went head-to-head again for Brennen Henson, who sang “Riptide” by Vance Joy. He was more up Stefani’s alley and even said he wanted to work with her since he wants to sing rock and folk-pop. Henson indeed went with Team Gwen.

Callie Lee did not turn any chairs with her performance of Meghan Trainor’s “No Excuses,” and nor did Clayton Cowell, who impressively beatboxed during his cover of “Just Friends (Sunny).” Monty Montanaro also received zero turns.

Legend finally turned during the second hour of the episode. His first turn was for Jared Herzog, who sang “Speechless,” and Stefani and Shelton also turned. Herzog joined Team John, so Legend made the right call finally turning for him.

Lauren Hall got Clarkson to turn almost immediately with her rendition of “One and Only” by Adele, but she only got the one turn, so Hall joined Team Kelly automatically. It was surprising that Legend didn’t turn for this one. He really was withholding his turns on this episode.

Legend did end up turning again for Matt New, who sang “Sunflower” and had a breathy, smooth voice. Clarkson and Stefani were feeling the song choice, and they both turned early, with Legend joining near the end. He would have been a good fit for any of those three teams, but he ended up going with Team John.

Jessie Lawrence got one turn from Stefani for his performance of “All or Nothing,” joining Team Gwen by default. A country singer named Elliemae sang “Merry Go Round” by Kacey Musgraves and also got just a one-chair turn from Shelton.

The Blind Auditions continue Tuesday night on The Voice.