His audition: Kris Thomas, 27, of Memphis, Tenn., auditioned with Whitney Houston’s “Saving All My Love for You.” Shakira turned around early in his performance. The other three judges stayed put, then expressed shock to discover it was a guy singing the song.
Battle Round: Kris defeated C. Perkins when they sang Bruno Mars’ “It Will Rain;” C. Perkins was stolen by Usher.
Knockout Round: Sang “A Wonderful World” and defeated Mary Miranda, who performed “Every Breath You Take.”
Live Playoffs: Performed “When I Was Your Man” and advanced to the Top 12 on fan voting.
His background: His father is a pastor, so Kris told The Voice he got his first exposure to music in church. In fact, growing up, he says he was only allowed to listen to gospel music, but would sneak into his brother’s room to listen to his R&B cassettes. After college, Kris said he landed a short-lived record deal that ended over creative differences. Depressed, he told The Voice he turned to alcohol until an accident prompted him to make changes. Now he’s looking for a second chance in the music industry.
On his coach: “Prior to going into the competition, I thought it was probably going to be Usher. But honestly, after speaking with Shakira and doing my own research on her, I feel like she would probably give me a broader perceptive musically and influence me in the ways that Usher may not have. So I think I ended up on the best team for me.”
What the show didn’t show: Kris has two singles on iTunes — a cover of Carrie Underwood’s “I Know You Won’t” from 2010 and a duet with country star Pam Tillis called “Two Kings” from 2011. The latter is a tribute to Elvis Presley and Martin Luther King Jr. Both are embedded below. Head to Facebook and you can hear another tune called “The Hard Way.” On Facebook, Kris says he was forced to sing in public for the first time at his church when he was 14. It was his punishment for laughing at other kids in the choir. As for the Whitney Houston song … he said it’s one he’s been singing for years. He performed it for The Voice producers prior to the show, and they decided he should do it again in the blind auditions. In a post-audition interview, he described his genre as pop-soul, but said he appreciates the country music approach to lyrics.
Quote: “Today’s music is so beat driven,” Kris writes on Facebook. “I want music that not only people can connect to lyrically, but will inspire musically,”
On iTunes: His audition song “Saving All My Love for You,” the 2011 single “Two Kings” with Pam Tillis and a 2010 single “I Know You Won’t.”
“Two Kings” (2011 single with Pam Tillis)
“I Know You Won’t” (2010 single)