"The Voice" continued its three-night premiere event on September 11 by featuring hopefuls with emotionally charged backstories. Fresh faces and strong voices emerged on the second night of blind auditions and perhaps some break-out stars, as well.
Xtina building a solid teamWith a total of 16 slots to fill, Christina Aguilera continues to follow a conservative strategy. She's not so quick to press her button, but she still attracts top-notch singers to her team.
Adriana Louise, her first recruit of the night, earned a four chair turn while performing Jessie J's "Domino." Backstage, Louise recounted a hostage situation involving her family when she was 9. That moment helped put her love for music into strong focus. "You have that voice that a lot of people have on record, but don't have live. You have it live, which is really rare," Adam Levine said.
Saying that the first record she ever bought with her own money when she was 9 years old was by Christina Aguilera, Louise joined Team Xtina.Aguilera also picked up Aquile, a singer who learned to play the guitar while his jaw was broken. Aquile delivered a smooth version of Elton John's "Your Song." "As soon as you started singing, there was this rich, buttery consistency," Levine said. Team Blake acquires an honest-to-goodness "music man" Transitioning from wrestling to music, Casey Muessigmann (pronounced "music man") attracted Blake Shelton's attention with his boots and a spirited rendition of "Sweet Home Alabama." A meniscus tear during his college wrestling days led to a downward spiral, but Muessigmann found his salvation in music.
Shelton and Cee Lo Green wanted the young singer, but Muessigmann chose Team Blake. He has a strong voice, but his habit of slapping his own backside as he sings may become a hot topic during Season 3.Julio Cesar Castillo may be what Sebastien De La Cruz from "America's Got Talent" grows up to be. A mariachi singer, Castillo became the first artist on "The Voice" to sing an entire song in Spanish. His rendition of "La Bamba" earned him a spot on Team Blake. Team Cee Lo picks up Harry Potter? Mackenzie Bourg is emerging as this season's comeback story. After contracting viral myocarditis, doctors placed Bourg into a medically induced coma, but the young singer promised to wake up in time for Super Bowl Sunday. His father said he woke up the night before, and they started looking up audition dates for "The Voice" right after the game.
Bourg sang "Pumped Up Kicks," but it looked like he might not make it onto a team. At the last moment, though, Cee Lo pushed his button. With his glasses and hair, Bourg doesn't mind that people think he resembles Harry Potter, but he shrugs off comparisons to Justin Bieber.Professional music experience doesn't equal success The producers of "The Voice" are sometimes criticized for selecting contestants with professional music backgrounds. That didn't help Ryan Fogarty during the blind auditions, though. A tour production coordination for LeAnn Rimes, Taylor was encouraged by Rimes to audition for "The Voice," but he received no button pushes during the blind auditions.
Shown in a quick montage, Brett Hite, Jamie Lampert, and Matt Carr each received a few precious seconds in the spotlight, but no chair turns. With some additional polish, these singers may do better on subsequent seasons.
"The Voice" concludes the Season 3 premiere week tonight, 9/12 at 8 PM ET/PT on NBC.
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