“The Voice” kicked off its first live show of Season 4 on Monday, featuring contestants from Team Adam Levine and Team Usher – and two women really stood out.
Michelle Chamuel (known for her black-rimmed glasses and penchant for taking the stage in sneakers), and Judith Hill (Michael Jackson’s former backup singer), were the two final performances of the show, and both were stellar.
Indie-rocker Michelle actually tackled – at Coach Usher’s urging – “True Colors.” Dressed in black pants and a white shirt and jacket for her performance, Michelle’s voice captivated the crowd, and left Adam stunned.
“At the beginning of the show, [Blake Shelton] talked about how people were going to have ‘break out moments,’ and I’m sure this is what Blake was going to say — so I’m gonna say it before he does… You are most definitely one of those moments,” Adam said. “I have been a believer, but this is one of those moments. You should be really proud, enjoy it.”
Judith (from Team Adam) then took to the stage for her rendition of “Feeling Good,” a song covered by many artists, including Nina Simone. Judith not only took charge of the stage, giving her performance a classy, confident touch, but she churned out vocals that got Usher, who had been fairly reserved throughout the night, excited – and a little annoyed (at himself).
“My comment associated with you will always be, ‘Man, why didn’t I fight harder!’” Usher laughed, referring to Adam winning Judith over to his team in the blind auditions. “You came out here and took us to church! You did a really great job.”
Here’s what happened with the rest of the pack:
Team Adam’s Amber Carrington tackled Jewel’s “Stay Here”
Blake raved about her performance. “Normally, it would suck to be the very first artist to sing in a live show because all the stuff to follow,” he said. “I gotta say, I think it would suck even worse to have to follow that. That’s setting the bar pretty high.”
Team Usher’s Josiah Hawley performed Muse’s “Starlight”
Shakira told Josiah he “rocked it” and Usher said he was, “a rock star.” Blake commented, “I think the world’s gonna lose a male model over this,” a reference to Josiah’s current career.
Team Adam’s Sarah Simmons sang Sarah McLachlan’s “Angel”
Adam told Sarah she is “one of the most incredible singers” he’s ever heard, but Usher found some faults with her performance. “There were a few little things,” he said. “But, that aside, you were incredible.”
Team Usher’s Cathia sang the Whitney Houston classic “I Have Nothing”
Shakira, Cathia’s former coach, questioned why Usher gave her a Whitney song. “Taking a Whitney song is like stepping on Holy ground,” she said. “I would not have picked that song if I was your coach, but I’m not your coach anymore.” Commenting on Cathia’s rendition of the classic tune, Blake said, “it was really good.”
Team Adam’s Caroline Glaser tackled “The A Team”
Usher was won over by the performance and said, “I do know that America is going to vote for you,” while Adam noted she, “did an amazing job.”
Team Usher’s Vedo performed “Against All Odds (Take A Look At Me Now)”
Shakira seemed to avoid critiquing Vedo’s performance. Instead, she said, “Who am I to say anything here. I’m just a little ant in the infinity of the universe… The audience loved you.” Adam did comment and he told Vedo he “did an amazing job.”
Team Blake and Team Shakira’s contestants perform on Tuesday’s episode of NBC’s “The Voice.”
-- Jolie Lash