It all began in September when the doors opened up to many performances in the Bind Auditions; where Jacquie Lee, Tessanne Chin, and Will Champlin won over their coaches, Adam Levine and Christina Aguilera to earn a spot on their teams. Each three battled it out and came out still standing when it came time for the Battle Rounds, and each night won over America by getting the votes to keep them in the competition. And now? Now it has all come down to the final two nights where again, America will vote for the very best performance and to crown who will become Season Five Voice winner.
Last night, for two hours straight, The Voice finalists would perform three songs; their blind audition song that earned them their spot on their team, a duet with their coach and finally the song that their coach has chosen for them. Tessanne, Will and Jacquie would also take to the stage together for night one of their final performances together as a group. It would mark the bittersweet end of what clearly shows lasting friendships from the three.
The show opened up with a rocking performance from coaches Adam, Blake Shelton, Cee-Lo Green and Christina, who performed the late eighties hit, “Pour Some Sugar on Me” by Def Leppard. Not only did the foursome perform the song together but they also performed the song with the original band members Phil K Collen, Rick Allen and Vivian Campbell.
Once the coach performance closed out, it was time for all to see the remaining three take the stage for their final performance. The competition kicked off with Tessanne, who performed her blind audition song, “Try” by Pink. Seeing her performance once again showed me why she got all four coaches to turn their chairs. The woman is completely flawless in her performances and has grown each time it came to taking the stage to compete. Not only is she beautiful on the outside but her vocals and elegant manner makes her a beauty inside as well. She pours her heart out into each song and grabs everyone’s attention.
The second artist from Team Adam was Will, who performed the Gavin DeGraw song “Not Over You.” I fell in love with his voice the minute he sang the first few notes during his blind auditions. He truly belonged on Adam’s team. His vocal capability is just wicked; he has a great range with his voice and he can make whatever song given his own without changing it too much from the original. When he took to the battle round and lost out to James, I was bummed but glad he had a second chance with Christina’s team. Thankfully he was given yet another chance again by returning back to Adam’s team.
Jacquie, the youngest and cutest sixteen year old from Team Christina sang the late Amy Winehouse’s song “Back to Black” from her blind audition. She did a good job on the song but there were some areas where she either sounded a bit sharp or just a bit too pitchy. A part of that I thought was due to excitement or some nervousness that the night was the final night. Christina has mastered coaching Jacquie in connecting with the songs she performs and being able to display the emotions for the audience to see. She is definitely a little Christina in the making.
For the duet segment of the show, Adam chose one of his favorite band’s songs, while Christina stuck to choosing a song that she’s performed. Adam selected The Beatles hit “Let it Be” for Tessanne and he to perform. Their connection to one another has always been one of the things that I’ve enjoyed seeing throughout the show; and their bond is tight. Their performance during rehearsals was great. They just blend so well together on the song. Not only did they fit like a glove in the performance but the two were both dressed to the nines on stage. It was one of many great performances of that night.
Christina selected the song “We Remain” which is her song from The Hunger Games: Catching Fire soundtrack to perform with Jacquie. Is it me or does Christina always want someone to perform a great deal of songs by her? The performance was a good one; but it wasn’t as strong as that of Tessanne and Adam’s performance. I would have personally liked to have seen Christina singing something else with Jacquie because it just looked like Christina was performing with backup. Jacquie is a strong performer but even as a duet, this wasn’t her strongest performance.
The final duo performance of the evening was Adam and Will, who performed another favorite classic song of mine, “Tiny Dance” by Elton John. During their rehearsal, Adam and Will both talked on how much alike they are musically. It’s the truth, too, because Will can truly match his vocals to that of Adam’s. I loved how they harmonized together. I also like that they didn’t turn around to create something unrecognizable. This has been Adam’s season when it comes to the song selections; he’s been on point with them and they are paying off.
Right after the night of blind audition songs and the duo songs with the coaches, it was time for the three finalists to join one another in the group performance. The song that they chose was “I’ll Be There” by the Jackson 5. Let me remind you all that this has been one of the best seasons of performances and this season, these group of singers just seemed to have a strong bond with one another. That bond showed as Jacquie, Tessanne and Will sang together. In the group performance, for me, both Tessanne and Will stood out. I still love listening to Jacquie sing, but last night’s performance just seemed to be more Team Adam dominated.
Closing out the evening were the last round of performances from Tessanne, Will and Jacquie. Tessanne kicked off the final round of performances by taking on the challenge of Adam giving her “I Have Nothing” by the late Whitney Houston. First of all, it’s very difficult to even come close to pulling off taking on one of the greatest power ballads of all time, let alone that being Whitney’s, so when Adam picked the song for her, even I joined in with Tessanne’s statement of not wanting to touch a Whitney Houston song. It took the first rehearsal to show all that Tessanne has the ability to take on that challenge and pull it off. On the stage, she owned that song, not taking anything away from it. She, to me, was the first person in a competition to successfully perform that song. Tessanne kept it 100.
I loved Will’s performance of “Everything I Do (I Do it for You)” by Bryan Adams. His performance was superb and I just loved that he sang that song not just to the audience but to his loving wife and daughter, who were in the audience watching. Just as Tessanne did, Will didn’t stray too far away from the original format of the song. Will, however, has the chops to just make the song flow right off of his
lips. I again, got shivers as he performed and it was so beautiful to see him closing out the song by going into the audience toward his wife and daughter.
The final performance of the evening was Jacquie’s performance of “And I’m Telling You I’m Not Going” from the Broadway musical Dream Girls sung by Jennifer Holiday. This song was way too huge for Jacquie in my opinion and this wasn’t a song that she could pull off her signature bravado with. She has grown vocally and the previous songs that Christina selected for her fit her; but this song wasn’t it. This, too is a powerhouse song and she did sing very well with it, it didn’t hold a candle to the performance of Tessanne who just connected with every single emotion that song displayed. The Tuesday finale will be the determination on where Jacquie will be when the votes have all been tallied.
It’s hard to believe that the season is soon to wrap up. Tuesday night is two-hours of performances from past contestants and great musical guests. As mentioned in last week’s review, Celine Dion, Lady Gaga, Ne-Yo and One Republic will be the musical guests. Not only will we be sitting on the edge of our seats to see who will be winner of season five of The Voice, but we will see what song Ryan Tedder, lead singer of One Republic has for the winner to sing. You don’t want to miss Tuesday evening to see if your votes helped your favorite vocalist come out on top as the new winner of The Voice.