Blake Shelton trails the other Voice coaches in singers three episodes into the blind auditions.
But he made his choices count Monday night, when he landed two of the three artists to earn four-chair turns.
They included Ryan Whyte Maloney and Sisaundra Lewis; the night’s other singer to turn four chairs — Clarissa Serna — joined Team Shakira.
Tonight, we’ll meet more singers during a one-hour episode. Here goes.
Megan Ruger, 26, Twin Lakes, Wis.: This young woman moved from her hometown to Nashville about six years ago to further her career. She started off singing Patsy Cline and Faith Hill, but says she’s also a rocker at heart, struggling to stand out. She’s going to sing “Just Like a Pill” by Pink and says she hopes the judges hear the “crazy me.” And Megan has a nice voice. And a nice edge to her look. What’s up with the coaches? She just held a glory note forever. And she wraps up a very, very solid audition. Finally, Blake and Usher turn around at the same time. Blake pulls out the Nashville card, and it works. Grade: B
Morgan Wallen, 20, Knoxville, Tenn.: Morgan is a landscaper, but says he started singing at age 3 when his mom put him on stage in church. At age 8, he entered a singing competition and placed third. But it sounds like baseball was his biggest passion growing up until he injured his pitching arm. He admits he “doesn’t have a clue” how to break into music beyond The Voice. He’ll sing “Collide.” And he gets Shakira to turn around in a flash. Morgan’s got some grit in his voice, but he’s also tough to understand in spots. Near the end of the performance, he shows off more power in his voice and gets Usher to turn around as well. Shakira calls his voice unique and says there are no voices like his on radio. And he joins Team Usher. Grade: B–
James Cavern, 26, Sacramento, Calif.: His parents are from Vietnam, but fled after the war, James says. He says he was 14 when he moved to the states. When he was young, he said, he had to hide his pursuit of music because it wasn’t accepted by his family. He eventually landed a well-paying sales job, but eventually quit it to pursue music. He’s going to sing “Let’s Get It On.” This vocal isn’t working for me. OK, James ended strong. But he still couldn’t entice a chair to turn. Grade: C–
Now, some singers who did land on teams: Dani Moz sang “I Need Your Love” and got a spot on Team Shakira; Music Box — yes, that’s what the screen says — sang “You Gotta Be” and also scored a spot on Team Shakira; Lexi Luca sang “Wasting All These Tears” — yep, the Cassadee Pope song — and wound up on Team Blake.
Emily B., 33, American Falls, Ind.: Emily says music “took off for me” after school and she headed to California to pursue her dream. She landed a job doing session music. A routine eye exam turned up an abnormality that required two brain surgeries. Emily recovered and is now singing again. For her audition, she’ll perform “Wicked Game.” Really like her opening on this song. Emily is turning in my favorite audition of the night, but it seemed to take forever for a chair to turn around. Now they’re doing it in rapid succession — Shakira, Blake and then Usher. That, folks, was a really great audition. And she picks Team Shakira. Grade: A–
Stevie Jo, 19, Tyler, Texas: He says he comes from a musical family. Both of his parents were in heavy metal bands when he was young, and he also performed in a metal band. But he says he now gravitates more toward R&B music. He’s singing “There Goes My Baby” and quickly shows the ability to nail high notes lots of guys couldn’t touch. Let’s see if singing an Usher song to Usher works. Well, Usher turned. Which prompts Stevie Jo’s mom to go a little bit crazy. Usher compliments him on great song selection. Adam says he sings like Usher, but looks like Blake. And since he was the only one to turn around, Stevie Jo joins Team Usher. Grade: C+
Audra McLaughlin, 21, Philadelphia, Pa. Audra says she had a learning disability growing up, fell behind in school and was bullied as a result. She’s doing well now, earning a 3.5 GPA as she works to become a medical assistant. She’s going to sing “Angel from Montgomery.” And Audra has a really nice tone to her voice. Not to mention a lot of power. Not to mention a touch of grit. And Adam turns around quickly. Not surprisingly, Blake follows. And at the last moment, so does Shakira. Wait, there’s a huge glory note. And that prompts Usher to turn. Usher calls her voice “amazing and immaculate.” Blake says his wife introduced him to that song. And Audra joins Team Blake. That’s the third four-chair turn singer he has landed in the last two nights. Grade: A–