‘The Voice’ Recap: Koryn Hawthorne And India Carney Pull Ahead In The Competition
Koryn Hawthorne and India Carney gave show stopping performances, and the female contestants continued to dominate The Voice as the Top 10 performed.
A brand new host of celebrity advisors joined The Voice on Monday night, with Dave Stewart helping out Team Adam Levine, Ryan Tedder on Team Pharrell Williams, Mark Ronson on Team Christina Aguilera and Scott Hendricks on Team Blake Shelton.
Kimberly Nichole “Something’s Got A Hold On Me”
Coming off of her huge Top 12 performance, Kimberly Nichole was given the task of singing Etta James’ “Something’s Got A Hold On Me.” Christina let Kimberly toughen up the song a bit, with her rocker vibe, but also wanted Kimberly to embrace the soulful side of this performance, and it paid off. Wearing a bedazzled jumpsuit, Kimberly worked the stage and got a standing ovation from the coaches. “Safe to say the bar has been set very high for our Top 10,” Carson Daly said before opening it up to the coaches.
Rob Taylor “A Song for You”
Rob Taylor wanted to sing “A Song for You” by Donny Hathaway behind his piano in rehearsals, but Mark Ronson thought he should abandon the piano after the opening of the song, just to be sure Rob could focus on the vocals. As usual, Rob’s range was on display in this performance, but so was his power and insane stage presence. Rob had Christina and Pharrell jumping out of their chairs, with Christina looking like a proud mother hen. Pharrell was blown away by Rob’s ability to go from one octave to another in one second, and both he and Christina felt that Rob gave a new kind of emotional performance. He also got a bro-hug from Carson.
India Carney “Run to You”
India Carney closed the show with Whitney Houston’s “Run to You.” India auditioned for The Lion King with this song and didn’t get the job, so she was determined to nail it on The Voice. In rehearsals, Christina cautioned India to try to let go of her perfectionist nature. India always hits all the notes, but sometimes her obsession with perfecting every last note can get in the way of delivering emotion, and that’s something Christina wanted her to deliver.
Pharrell loved India’s performance, as did Adam, who couldn’t believe she was ever turned away from a Broadway audition. “You made the song your own beautiful thing,” Christina said, complimenting her confidence to perform the song even though it scared her.
Joshua Davis “Hold Back the River”
Adam wanted Joshua Davis to break out of his shell and push himself vocally to reach his higher register on “Hold Back the River.” The coaches agreed they liked seeing Joshua show off his range, but Pharrell and Blake were equally pretty nonplused by the performance. Even coach Adam said that the risk of the song might not have paid off, but he was happy with how Joshua dominated the higher notes.
Deanna Johnson “Somebody to Love”
Deanna Johnson earned the Voice Instant Save last week, and Adam wanted her to do something “bold and unexpected.” In rehearsals, Adam and Dave Stewart encouraged Deanna to deliver the power, but Deanna struggled a bit vocally during the performance. Christina complimented her risk, but admitted that she could hear her struggle to hit all the notes.
Hannah Kirby “Shout”
Blake worried about letting Hannah Kirby do the 80s jam, “Shout,” but he trusted Hannah to pull it off. Hannah embraced the song in her performance, giving a more serious and commanding performance than we’re used to seeing from her. “Hannah, you’re like growing up right before my eyes, turning into a superstar,” Christina said. Pharrell added that Hannah is, without a doubt, a “great performer,” and Blake called her a vocal “freak of nature.”
Meghan Linsey “Home”
Meghan Linsey chose her Top 10 song, “Home” by Marc Broussard, which she connected with because it’s all about Louisiana, her home state. The song allowed Meghan to embrace her Southern soul, but Blake and Scott Hendricks cautioned her against relying too much on pulling out the big vocals in the choruses, which they thought left the verses feeling flat. Meghan’s confident and commanding performance had the coaches on their feet – Christina even called it her best performance yet.
Corey Kent White “Unwound”
Corey Kent White stuck with Country, singing George Straight’s “Unwound.” Corey sounded great in rehearsals, but Blake and Scott Hendricks agreed that he didn’t look energetic on stage standing behind his guitar. So Corey put the guitar down in an effort to prove he could rock out with the best of them. The song allowed Corey to show off a big more grit and rasp in his voice, but his performance still lacked that infectious energy that makes a contestant a star. Sill, it was a good performance – Adam called him “Captain Consistent” for always delivering – despite a lyric flub that gave Blake a bit of pause.
Koryn Hawthorne “Make It Rain”
Koryn Hawthorne embraced the emotional performance of “Make It Rain,” which gave Ryan Tedder and Pharrell goosebumps from the very beginning. In rehearsals, Ryan and Pharrell pushed Koryn to push her voice by trying out some falsetto and adding a few breaks in her delivery. Pharrell wisely chose to let Koryn stand on her own on stage, forgoing the grand production that accompanied other Top 10 performances, and let Koryn’s sincere vocals do all the work – and work they did.
Koryn blew the coaches away, and had Pharrell practically in tears. Even Carson couldn’t believe the 17-year-old’s performance. Blake and Christina both gushed over Koryn, again calling it her best performance. “Koryn, you have earned the title ‘Inspirational Singer’ because this room is inspired right now, and America is inspired,” Pharrell said.
Sawyer Fredericks “Iris”
Sawyer Fredericks wanted to do The Goo Goo Dolls’ “Iris,” a song he said he always felt he could connect to. In rehearsals, Sawyer struggled a bit with the track, but sold the emotion of the song despite the fact that he’s never been in love. Sawyer has a tone that makes it nearly impossible not to believe what he’s singing, and it really helped him with this performance.
The Top 8 will be named on The Voice Tuesday night at 8 p.m. on NBC.
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