(LOS ANGELES) — The Voice kicked off its 13th season Monday night with two hours of blind auditions.
Adam Levine and Blake Shelton are back as coaches, joined by returning coach Miley Cyrus and new coach Jennifer Hudson, who nabbed a couple of artists, including the very first one of the season.
Here are the highlights of Monday night’s episode:
Chris Weaver is a worship leader by day, drag queen by night. He’s no stranger to Hudson, who once threw a shoe him – a compliment – after hearing him sing. This time, he got her to turn her chair around, and launch another shoe in his direction, with his take on Otis Redding’s version of “Try a Little Tenderness.” He also got the other three judges to turn around. Plead as they may, Chris chose Team JHud. Jennifer told the singer, “Yes, you come from church, but God gave you that voice to sing far and beyond.”
Nashville native Mitchell Lee scrapped a career as a dentist to “lift people’s spirits” with his rich voice. His version of Jess Glynne’s “Hold My Hand” got Blake, Adam and Jennifer to push their buttons. Adam noted that Mitchell was a “good looking guy” with a “strong voice” and predicted that he would go far in the competition. Noticing Lee’s southern accent, Blake went to work pointing out their common roots, assuring the singer that he loved working with rock and country artists. That was enough for Mitchell, who chose Team Blake.
Dave Crosby is famous for producing viral YouTube videos of his young daughter, 4-year-old Clairesinging, but on Monday, he took center stage with his take on Death Cab for Cutie’s “I Will Follow You into the Dark.” Adam, Miley and Blake made bids for the singer. He picked Adam, who loved the “purity and beauty” of Crosby’s voice. As an added bonus, Claire also was brought on stage to sing Randy Newman’s “You’ve Got a Friend in Me,” from Toy Story.
English teacher Brandon Showell is living a double life — his students don’t know he sings on the side. His performance of Shawn Mendes’ “There’s Nothing Holdin’ Me Back” inspired Miley, Jennifer and Adam to push their buttons for him. Once again, the round went to Adam, who praised Brandon for being a teacher, but insisted that was this “whole other person in there” who hasn’t gotten the recognition he deserved.
Finally, 26-year-old Native American Brooke Simpson – who started singing with her parents when she was just seven took the stage. She drew a four-chair turnaround with her take on Demi Lovato’s “Stone Cold,” leading to a heated battle between the judges for the right to have the singer on his or her team. Miley emerged the winner with her pitch about being an “invested coach” who is going to “win this season.” For good measure, she placed Brooke’s hand on her heart to feel how hard it was beating for her.
The blind auditions continue with a one-hour episode airing Tuesday night at 8 p.m. ET on NBC.
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