The stars of "The Voice" got together to reminisce about their ground-breaking first year as the show gears up for the next round of contestants. Superstar coaches Blake Shelton, Christina Aguilera, Adam Levine and Cee Lo Green dished on their favorite moments from last season for a recent special on NBC.
Shelton said he got a huge rush from performing Green's "Crazy" with his co-stars in the premiere episode, and that was the moment that the coaches' interpersonal relationships really gelled together.
"We were all just getting to know each other at that point, also, and I think after we performed, and had that bond together on stage, that's what really kicked off our relationships, that we each had individually and as a group. It was just a magical moment."
One of the more memorable of those individual relationships was the "bromance" Shelton had with co-star Levine, trading jokes all season. Their friendship has obviously continued past the show with Tweets, photos of questionable taste, and even their significant others trading a few Tweets. Who would have thought the Bible-belt cowboy and the Jewish city boy would hit it off so well? There has to be a sitcom in there somewhere. Or a reality show.
Other performances the coaches cited as highlights included Aguilera enjoying her performance of "Lady Marmalade" with her whole team, and her duet with team finalist Beverly McClellan. Likewise, Levine cited singing "Man in the Mirror" with his finalist and winner Javier Colon and Colon's duet with Stevie Nicks.
"When Stevie Nicks and Javier did 'Landslide' I was almost in tears," Levine admitted, although the emotion he was feeling was obvious already to anyone who saw the moment last year. As it was with Shelton watching his finalist Dia Frampton performing "The House that Built Me" with his wife, Miranda Lambert.
But all the other coaches agreed their favorite performance of the season was Green performing "Love is a Battlefield" with his finalist Vicci Martinez. Not just the singing, but the dancers and over-the-top costuming. Aguilera felt that Green brought a great sense of styling and prop use to the performances, calling him the most exciting coach and saying she looked forward to what he would bring to the table again this year. "We'll see what wigs he has this year," she laughed.
Aguilera also said she loved the way "the boys" made her laugh, particularly Shelton, and the "friendly" rivalry of the coaches. Although she didn't name names, anyone who watched the first season knows who she is really talking about -- the much publicized rivalry with Levine. The two verbally duked it out over several contestants, warring against each other with words to win them over, including going head-to-head for both of their respective team finalists during auditions. And the rivalry continued after, with the only real criticism of other coaches' contestants coming at the hands of Aguilera, who found fault in several of Levine's team member performances.
Did they really make nice with their "Moves Like Jagger" hit? Or is Aguilera bent on redemption this year at any cost? I'd put my money on the latter if I were you. Buckle your seat belts when these two get together again.
Despite how soap-operaish that sounds, what makes "The Voice" so unique is the personal nature of the stars' relationships with their teams, with so many emotional moments and highlights. As the coaches themselves make the majority of the cuts, their agony was apparent when choosing who to eliminate, including some controversial choices -- most notably when Shelton chose Xenia over the country crooner Patrick Thomas for the last semi-finalist slot, to the shock of everyone. Even Shelton himself, it would seem, who seemed to change his mind last minute. He seemed to not have the heart to cut her, and probably figured with his country connections he could help Thomas after the fact.
And that's what is so special about "The Voice" -- the coaches really are just that, and personally invested in their team members. They're still out there fighting to help them, making guest appearances on their albums and doing plenty behind the scenes to advocate for their protégés. But just as the coaches have given so much to their contestants, they got a lot back in return.
"To get to know those kids and work with 'em - it recharged me and made me excited about music again," said Shelton.
The next season of "The Voice" debuts Feb. 5 after Super Bowl XLVI and will air Mondays for the rest of the season. This time, each coach will start with 12 instead of eight contestants, so expect more songs, more laughs, more tears and more drama. Which is to say, more awesome for the new year.
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