The thinking man's talent
show has returned for an eighth go-round. But as
challenging and game-changing as this show is, you can
still count on one hand the superstar careers made from
it. Namely, the coaches. Namely Adam Levine and Blake
Shelton. Oh yeah, and to a lesser extent, Carson Daly.
We don't want just a good singer this time... we want a
All four coaches kick off
the season with a performance of "Are You Gonna Go
Let's get season 8
started with Sarah Potenza (34; Nashville), who comes
from a comedic family and specializes in country blues.
Her husband, a cook named Ian, has been with her through
it all. Her father has also been through it all, but he
has Alzheimer's. So hopefully this performance will
bring out his spirit with "Stay With Me". Adam hits the
first buzzer of the season... Pharrell hits the second.
Both are moved to their feet. But Christina and Blake
want in on this action, too. The decision is now
Sarah's... and it's not easier as Adam and Pharrell
approach the stage. Sarah picks.. BLAKE? Wow. Must want
to win this one BADLY.
Lowell Oakley (19,
Durham, NC) comes from a long line of businessmen, but
his uncle was an opera singer. He wants to bring opera
and jazzy crooning together with a little bit of church
music. He says that him being clean cut could work in
his favor, but remember, your voice will open the door.
He goes with the standard "Don't Get Around Much
Anymore". Adam gets around. Pharrell waits for The
Note... and challenges Adam for control. Challenge...
ACCEPTED. Pharrell is the pick. Adam historically has a
hard time picking in the early rounds.
Rob Taylor (22;
Donaldsonville, LA) was raised by his mother. Now he
returns the favor after she had a stroke. It's made him
a stronger person. But does it make him a stronger
singer? Let's find out with "I Want You". Christina
wastes no time in getting her foot in the door. Then
comes Adam AND Pharrell. Christina really does want him.
But who gets him? It's... CHRISTINA!
Ivonne Acero (16; Aguila,
AZ) is a real melon-head. Actually, she farms cantaloupe
with her parents, both of whom emigrated from Mexico.
She wanted to work there to get enough scratch for a
"Voice" audition in NYC. Well, she made it, despite ZERO
voice lessons. Now it's on the coaches to judge her
singing "Try". The song goes, "You don't have to try."
She needed to try a little bit harder. Well, there's
always next time.
Cody Wickline (20;
Beckley, WV) is the only one in the family with any
musical talent. "(My parents) can't sing a lick." He
currently goes to college for nursing, but he would like
to make something of his music. Will he make something
with the country stylings of "He Stopped Loving Her
Today"? Yep. But surprisingly, it isn't Blake, but Adam
who gets the first hit in. Blake finally answers back.
But before he can end his audition... FOUR TURN! The
safe money's on Blake, really... and that's what
We're off to Frederick,
MD, where we meet Treeva Gibson (16), who grew up with
two deaf parents. She learned sign language before she
could learn how to speak. Both of them are teachers.
Treeva herself lost some hearing, but it isn't going to
get any worse. She will however have to rely heavily on
lip reading. Hopefully won't be necessary as she tries
for a chair with "Young and Beautiful". And she gets
Blake and Christina to turn a chair. Who will get to
coach this young ingénue? It's going to be another young
Next up, we're going back
to something we've done only in the early seasons, going
strictly by voice. It's Mason Henderson and "Riptide".
The answer... no.
Meghan Linsey (28;
Nashville) signed a record deal with her duo Steel
Magnolia. One of her singles went to the top 5 of the
country charts. They opened for Brad Paisley, Bob Seger,
Reba, and... Blake Shelton. But in 2011, Josh & her
broke up, and so did the group. She's been working on a
solo career. All we can say is if Tommy Pickles can get
on this show, then why not. Will she stick to country or
go for a more soulful route? She goes with "Love Hurts".
And it's gonna hurt a lot for Blake, because his three
cohorts all want in. "Really, Blake?" Of course. She
ends up with PHARRELL.
Joshua Davis (37,
Traverse City, MI) got his guitar as a bar mitzvah
present. Into his college, he played folk music in a
band. Right now, He & his wife are expecting a second
child, which makes him want to push this dream ever
harder. He'll try his luck with "I Shall Be Released".
Wasn't long before Adam and Blake were released. But
BLAKE would get his seal of approval.
Bryce Sherlow (17; Ho-Ho-Kus,
NJ) is a high school student who is plucked from her a
cappella group and brought to the main stage. She was
studying with American Ballet in New York before
discovering her voice. She sang the solo in "Happy" by
Pharrell that got her groups to nationals. The question:
can she do it again? The song: "Cool Kids".
Unfortunately, she probably should've sung "Happy". It
would've been a lot less pitchy. Well, she gets to sing
it with Pharrell, but she's not going to the Battle
Last artist of the night
is Sawyer Fredericks (15; Fultonville, NY), who lies
with 19 cows, 2 pigs, 1 donkey, 14 hens, and 2 roosters.
He will be a farmer to pay the bills, but he really
wants to sing. His voice is changing. Hopefully he
doesn't peak during the closer, Soggy Bottom Boys' "I'm
a Man of Constant Sorrow". Insta-hits all around, with
Blake being the sole holdout. Ultimately, Blake says
"what the hell." But what does Sawyer say? He says...
"... I pick.... Pharrell."
And here is where we
stand after night 1.
And we're just getting
started. The blind auditions continue tomorrow.
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