7:04pm PT by Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya
'The Voice': Semifinalists Sing for America's Vote
The eight semifinalists performed for a shot in the finals on NBC's The Voice on Monday night. Coach Blake Shelton had the advantage with five artists competing, while two-time winner Kelly Clarkson had one, John Legend had two and Adam Levine had no contenders left. The four finalists will be determined by viewers’ votes and announced live on Tuesday night.
All of the artists sang twice, performing solos and then duets of Beatles songs.
First up was Team Blake’s Andrew Sevener, singing The Charlie Daniels Band's “Long Haired Country Boy.” He gave a smooth, straightforward country performance. Clarkson praised the song choice, and Levine called it Sevener's personal-best performance. His coach called him authentic.
The first duet of the evening came from Team Blake’s Kim Cherry and Team Legend’s Shawn Sounds. They sang “Eleanor Rigby,” and their voices blended well, the stripped-down arrangement suiting their voices. Cherry focused on the singing instead of going with her usual rapping.
Shelton’s next artist Gyth Rigdon was up, singing Lee Greenwood's “God Bless the U.S.A.” It was a pandering song choice, and he performed it well, but he didn’t make it his own or all that interesting. It was entertaining, though, and will likely connect with viewers. Clarkson wasn’t a fan of the vocals, and Legend agreed, but Shelton thought it was Rigdon's personal best.
Cherry was up again, this time for her solo. She sang “Together Again” by Janet Jackson and incorporated the coaches’ advice from last time to put singing before rapping. She altered the song to slow it down and give it a much different feel to the original, making it her own and taking chances that paid off. Clarkson noted that Cherry would be great on Broadway.
The next duet paired Team Legend’s Maelyn Jarmon with Team Kelly’s Rod Stokes for a performance of “Yesterday.” It was a vulnerable performance, and both artists sounded strong, drawing a standing ovation from all four coaches.
Next up, Team Blake’s Carter Lloyd Horne sang “Take Me to Church” by Hozier and had a lot of pitch issues throughout his performance. He particularly struggled in the beginning. Clarkson and Legend were honest about his pitch problems, and Shelton commended him for his recovery.
Team Kelly’s only semifinalist, Stokes was back up for his solo performance of “Go Rest High on That Mountain,” another pandering song for the country fans who watch. He played guitar and delivered a solid vocal, proving to be one of the better country singers left in the competition. Levine praised the song choice.
Rigdon returned to the stage for a duet with Dexter Roberts. The Team Blake artists sang “Hey Jude,” bringing some country style to the song.
Team Legend’s Maelyn Jarmon followed with a powerful performance of “Stay” by Rihanna. It was a challenging song choice, but she delivered, showcasing range and complex vocal abilities that helped her stand out. Levine said that she should win the show.
Sevener and Horne both returned to the stage to sing “Help!,” and Horne was able to find his notes this time. They put on an entertaining performance together.
Roberts was the last Team Blake semifinalist to sing his solo. He sang "Here Without You" by 3 Doors Down and blended rock and country styles for it. Clarkson commended him for stepping slightly out of his wheelhouse with the song choice and doing something different. Shelton praised his singing.
Closing out the night was Team Legend's second semifinalist, Shawn Sounds. He sang "A Song for You" by Leon Russell and gave an emotional performance that really showcased his range and finesse. Sounds sang lots of runs, but didn't overdo it. It was one of the most vocally impressive performances of the evening.
The results, including an Instant Save, will be announced Tuesday night.