Greatest hits from ‘The Voice’
The talent contest has been spinning off in versions around the world. Let's see the highlights.
People who are excited at the sight of spinning red chairs and the sound of Blake Shelton's corny jokes are in heaven this week, as NBC's "The Voice" returned to start an eighth season of blind auditions, battle rounds, Twitter saves and good-natured competition between the celebrity coaches. Christina Aguilera is back after a year away, and she joins Shelton, Adam Levine and Pharrell Williams in the coaches' red chairs this season.
"The blinds," as the first round is called on the show, is the signature feature of "The Voice" and what has made the show a hit in more than 60 countries, with about 50 different adults' and kids' versions being produced. The excitement of a coach turning his or her chair to say "I WANT YOU" to an aspiring singer, then being surprised when the face doesn't match the voice, has never gotten old, even though the concept has been around since it debuted in the Netherlands in 2010.
Here are some of the best, most surprising performances from "Voice" blind auditions around the world:
Sawyer Fredericks, "I am a Man of Constant Sorrow" (The Voice USA)
Fifteen-year-old Sawyer Fredericks shocked the audience and coaches on Monday night's season premiere with a mature, stirring rendition of the bluegrass standard most people know from the movie "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" All four chairs turned, but the folk singer surprisingly chose Pharrell; the exasperated look on Adam's face is priceless.
Annaelle Valensi, "One of Us" (The Voice Israel)
"The Voice Israel" had some interesting talent grace its stage, like Jessy Katz, the niece of superstar director Steven Spielberg. But when a singer breaks out the Joan Osborne, all bets are off, as Annaelle Valensi did here.
He Huang, "Rolling In the Deep" (The Voice of China)
Many a "Voice" contestant has tried (and failed) to belt out this Adele hit, but a surprisingly powerful rendition came from tiny 20-year-old He Huang, who took the stage barefoot.
David Dam, "Let's Get It On" (The Voice of Holland)
The country that started the "Voice" craze isn't exactly known for its crop of R&B singers, but David Dam is one of them, giving a performance of the Marvin Gaye classic that turned all four chairs.
Kokoi Baldo, "One Day" (The Voice of the Philippines)
Baldo's rendition of the Matisyahu song not only got all four chairs to turn but got all the judges dancing.
Stevie McCrorie, "All I Want" (The Voice UK)
It seems that getting a four-chair turn from the coaches of the British version of the show is tough to do, but Stevie McCrorie's cover of Kodaline's "All I Want" did the trick. Even Sir Tom Jones turned around for the performance.
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