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‘The Voice’ Recap: Blake Shelton Expands Team to Include First Non-Country Contestants

Blake Shelton
Frederick M. Brown, Getty Images

On Monday, America got a glimpse at the country talent Blake Shelton was boasting about earlier this week when he predicted a Nashville-bound singer would make it to the final rounds of ‘The Voice‘ — and maybe win it all. The singer and coach of the reality show picked up two new members for Team Blake in the second episode.

The show began with all four coaches singing a Prince medley, which included ’1999,’ ‘Little Red Corvette’ and ‘Kiss.’ Cee Lo Green, Christina Aguilera and Adam Levine were heavily featured until the final song, when Shelton turned in a bluesy version of ‘Kiss’ (no, he didn’t go for Prince’s famous falsetto).

From the first audition, all four coaches were playfully (mostly) bickering back and forth about who would make a better coach. They each turned around for the LiNE, a Nashville-infused duo that chose Tom Petty‘s ‘American Girl’ for their audition. Aguilera threw an early punch by reminding them that Shelton sent his duo home early last season. Still, it was shocking that Hailey Steele and Leland Grant ended up choosing her team.

The country singer fired back three contestants later. “Let me just say that if you look across this panel you’ll see spikes and tattoos and things like that,” he said. “I’m your country guy.” He was speaking to the undeniably country songstress Gwen Sebastian, who auditioned with Sugarland‘s ‘Stay.’ She broke down after finishing, feeling her decision to put off starting a family to begin a music career was justified. There was little doubt she would choose Shelton’s team, and she didn’t disappoint.

Perhaps the night’s most curious moments came when Green pulled object after object out of his Acme bag of tricks. After landing Jamar Rogers, he was suddenly speaking while stroking a cat that looked straight out of Inspector Gadget nemesis Dr. Claw’s layer. Later, he switched glasses to make sure Angie Johnson was beautiful (she was). Harry Carey thought his new frames were ridiculous.

One of the more surprising moments, however, came when Jermaine Paul chose Shelton over Green. The backup singer to Alicia Keys satisfied the coach’s need to build a team of variety. All four coaches were impressed with his voice, and later his confidence and sense of humor. Perhaps more than all others from Monday night, Paul seems poised to go deep into the competition.

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