It was the first night of the knockout rounds on Monday’s edition of The Voice, a night that saw coaches Blake Shelton and Jennifer Hudson facing off against each other for the right to steal one of Miley Cyrus’ artists.
Artists from coach Adam Levine’s team also duked it out to see which ones would make it to the live rounds.
To make the round even more interesting, each artist had to watch his or her opponent rehearse.
Advising the artists for the knockout rounds was season-14 coach, Kelly Clarkson.
First up for Team Blake was Adam Cunningham, tackling Chris Stapleton’s “Either Way,” challenged by Esera Tuaolo, singing Luther Vandross’ version of “Superstar.” Shelton and Clarkson both agreed that Cunningham needed to pull the audience in more with his vocal. Kelly urged Esera to use his vibrato to avoid being “pitchy.” Blake thought Cunningham’s performance was incredible, but explained that there was nothing like Tuaolo’s voice on the show – or the earth. Esera moves on to the live rounds.
However, Adam was stolen by Adam Levine, and advances as well.
Next, it was Team Jennifer’s Lucas Holliday, with the Aaron Neville classic “Tell It Like It Is,” going up against Shi’Ann Jones, tackling the Jackson Five‘s version of Smokey Robinson‘s “Who’s Loving You.” Jennifer wanted to see Lucas open up his full range. Kelly, suggesting that 15-year-old Shi’Ann must have “puppy love” for someone, urged her to imagine how crushed she’d be if it didn’t work out. Jennifer thought both artists did an “outstanding” job, but gave the round to Jones, who moves on to the live rounds. Holliday was sent packing.
Adam paired Dennis Drummond, singing and playing guitar on Jimi Hendrix’s version of Bob Dylan’s “All “Along the Watchtower,” against Addison Agen, performing “Beneath Your Beautiful,” by Labrinth, featuring Emeli Sandé. Adam and Kelly reminded Dennis that the competition is called The Voice, and to showcase his vocals a little more. Addison, 16, was advised to emphasize the soulfulness in her voice. Adam, noting a “comfort” he feels when Addison sings, picked her to represent his team in the live rounds. Dennis was sent home.
The knockouts continued with Team Miley’s Janice Freeman – blending soul and alternative rock on Mary J. Blige’s “I’m Goin’ Down” — challenged by Karli Webster, tackling Linda Ronstadt’s version of Roy Orbison‘s“Blue Bayou.” Karli’s job, according to Miley, was to deliver an emotional performance. Clarkson suggested that Freeman bring in the audience with her range and grab them with her sexy growl. It was a tough decision for Miley, but she declared Janice the winner, explaining that she did a better job of showcasing all the qualities in her voice. Freeman moves on, while Webster goes home.
Next, Jennifer paired smooth-voiced singer Eric Lyn, delivering Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Going On,” against gospel artist Davon Fleming, with MercyMe’s “I Can Only Imagine.” Hudson advised both to “stand flat-footed and sing.” Jennifer tipped her hat to both vocalists, but declared Davon the winner, because he “brought something special.” He advances, representing Team JHud. Eric’s Voice run comes to an end.
Closing out the show were Team Miley’s “raspy” voiced singers — Ashland Craft, putting a southern rock spin on Bon Jovi’s “Dead or Alive,” and Chloe Kohanski, with an aching cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “Landslide.” Kelly advised Ashland to “lock eyes with the audience,” while praising Chloe’s “instincts” and ability to interpret a song. Miley gave the round to Ashland – her country girl with the big voice. She moves on to the live rounds.
However, that led to a battle between Jennifer and Blake for Chloe. Hudson complimented Kohanski, insisting the artist had a “beautiful message to share” and she wanted to be a part it. Blake noted that Chloe knew who she was and what kind of songs she wanted to sing, adding that there is nothing that can compete with that. In a Voice first, Adam campaigned for Kohanski to pick Team Blake. She did, and continues to the live rounds as well.
The Voice knockout rounds continue Tuesday night at 8 p.m. ET on NBC.
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