His audition: Matthew Schuler, 20, of Yardley, Pa., sang “Cough Syrup” by Young the Giant. With a couple of lines, all four coaches turned around simultaneously. When the song ended, Matthew got a high-five from Blake Shelton and a hug from Christina Aguilera. Cee Lo’s reaction: “Well, hot damn. Who the hell are you?” Matthew picked Christina.
Background: We were introduced to Matthew as he played rugby at West Chester University, worked as a sandwich maker and order taker at a bagel shop and worshiped with his parents — both pastors — in the basement of their home where they hold services after losing the lease on their church. Singing? Well, he was singing during the church service and told The Voice he made up songs so he could remember the ingredients in the bagels he makes.
On picking Christina: Matthew says he entered the audition thinking he’d likely pick Cee Lo or Adam if they turned around. But he also said a producer reminded him to keep an open mind when he got on stage, advice that came in very handy. “There was just something about Christina,” he said. “She has that mothering quality, that nurturing quality. And I really feel like she wants to win this season. I think she’s really going to fight for me. We have the battles coming up. We have the knockouts coming up. We need to survive those rounds. We need a coach who’s really going to fight for us.”
What the show didn’t show: Matthew says he’s been “singing forever,” mostly in church settings, leading worship services in his parents’ church and traveling to perform at other churches in the Philly suburbs. He admits he hasn’t done much performing outside of church, but doesn’t consider himself strictly a Christian artist. When he was a student at Pennsbury High School, he joined a band that performed at skate parks and in a battle of the bands competition. He’s also performed at open mike nights and says he’s written a lot of music he hopes to share with the world some day.
Quote: Asked whether he feels pressure from being regarded as an early front-runner, especially by his coach, Matthew said: “I’m really just focused on having fun up there. I mean, any time I get anxious like — any anxiety or just I get in my head about stuff — I end up not performing well. So, I mean, I think what I really need to focus on to live up to that expectation is to just have fun.”
Matthew Schuler, “Vices to Victory”
You can also see a video of a song called “Dreams Come True” on his Facebook page.