The Voice opened with an introduction to the two new judges for the voice. Shakira and Usher have a number of awards between them, but did they really need an introduction? And to keep the other two from feeling left out, the opening scenes talked about Adam and Blake’s previous Voice team wins in their introductions.
The foursome opened the program by singing “Come Together” by the Beatles. Each showed diversity, with Adam playing drums, Usher on the bass, Blake on guitar and Shakira singing. Then Shakira shocked the audience, pulling out a harmonica for a solo.
Then the first audition: the Morgan twins from Rochester, N.Y. The pair is the first set of twins for the show. Before we could even hear both voices, Blake and Usher turned around. Eventually, Adam and Shakira joined the game, and the Morgan twins, who had almost identical voices, chose Team Blake – a shock after the duo said they wanted to work with Usher in their pre-interview.
Blake opened his pitch to the women saying the Morgan twins are a dream for most men. The pair may be a dream for his team with their perfect pitch and ability to harmonize.
Watch The Morgan twins audition:
Austin, Texas, native Jess Kellner came next, singing “Can’t Help Falling in Love.” Shakira and Usher turned their chairs almost immediately. Adam and Blake were happy to let the newbies fight over Kellner.
In the end, she chose Team Usher. He told her she could make it to the end. We'll have to see who else makes his team before believing that statement.
The third audition resulted in another Voice team member, too.
Mark Andrew, of Minnesota, wants to leave his life as a roofer. Mark provided us with our first tear-jerker story of the night. Two of his high school band-mates have died and he was dedicating his performance to Nolan and Matt.
Mark sang “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door” because that’s the song with which he learned to play guitar. Hey, did you know Adam plays guitar, too? Well if you didn’t, he played the card with Mark. He also pulled out the “former winner” card for the first time this season.
Shakira quickly chimed in that she, too, can play guitar, and that Adam’s first season win was pure beginner’s luck. As a newbie, she has beginner’s luck this year, right?
In the end, the argument worked and Mark chose Team Shakira, claiming his wife would never forgive him if he didn’t.
The fourth contestant of the night was the first to not receive a team. Janetza Miranda sang Titanium. Blake noted it was over-dramatic, and Shakira suggested changing the key of her song.
Adam saw that Janetza was shaken by the reality that she would not be on a team, and walked onto stage to calm her down, but told her that they were going to give her things to work on, and then she should come back another season.
16-year-old Danielle Bradbery had a choice to make after her performance – but first, her back story.
The Texas native told the cameras that growing up, other kids made fun of her, so she sang in her room a lot. That paid off during tonight’s blind audition.
After performing “Mean,” she had to choose between Adam, Usher and Blake. While Adam and Blake duked it out, Usher remained quiet – until he used the trump card of Justin Bieber.
That might have worked if Usher had stopped there, but he went on to talk about how he wanted to shock the world by doing something big. Blake said he wanted to introduce Bradbery to Nashville, to which we had one of the more bizarre moments of the night.
Usher, trying to say he wanted to make her more global, said Nashville was a state. Adam and Blake pounced, making fun of Usher for the next several minutes. While the foursome laughed, Bradbery laughed and the audience at home laughed.
The aspiring country artist predictably selected Team Blake.
See Danielle Bradbery audition:
If you thought Mark’s story was a tearjerker, Vedo’s probably broke your heart.
Hearing he got the call for The Voice while taking care of his dying mother was heartbreaking. Then he started to sing.
Usher was the only one to turn around during Vedo’s performance of Justin Bieber’s “Boyfriend,” but he may have an ace up his sleeve for the season. Vedo’s smooth voice is the kind that wins The Voice year after year.
In the end, there was no choice to make and Vedo ended up on Team Usher.
More than halfway through the episode, Adam was still waiting for his first team member.
Pennsylvania bar musician Christian Porter took a big risk with his acoustic version of “Sexy and I Know It.”
The unique arrangement lured Blake, Usher and Shakira to turn their chairs. The cover artist selected Team Blake.
See Christian Porter perform "Sexy and I Know It":
We’ve reached the point in show when we start to see the rejects with less than interesting stories. The show can’t feature every person who auditions, or we’d have an entire season of blind auditions.
After a montage of musicians and constructive comments from the judges, we get back to featured auditions.
Leah Lewis a 15-year-old who was adopted from China when she was only a few months old. Her parents adopted her sister as well.
After performing “Blown Away,” the judges, who did not opt to put Leah on a team, told the teen her voice was slightly under-developed.
Her friends and family greeted her backstage with hugs.
And we’re three-quarters through the first episode and still waiting on Team Adam to have a contestant.
Would Kris Thomas be the first for the Maroon 5 frontman?
Thomas sang “Saving All my Love for You.” Shakira was the only judge to turn her chair during the performance. Thomas sang most of the song in falsetto, which shocked the other judges when their chairs turned at the end of the performance. They expected to see a woman standing before them, but there Kris Thompson stood.
Each congratulated Shakira on her possible fan-favorite.
The next performer, James Irwin, gave a subdued performance of “The Man Who Can’t Be Moved.” While no judge selected him, Voice viewers could see him again in future seasons. His pre-performance interview focused on a tragic loss of twins, born after five months of pregnancy. The loss almost drove him away from music, until he got the call to audition for The Voice. Irwin and his wife have since had a baby boy.
Adam’s first team member may be the only one he needs.
Judith Hill may just win this season. She’s that good. The former duet partner to Michael Jackson performed “We are the World” at his memorial service.
And she felt it was in bad taste to capitalize off that performance, so she waited. Now, after an audition for The Voice, she may have made it on her own in the music world.
Two notes into her song, Adam and Usher turned their chairs. Eventually Blake and Shakira joined the party, but it was too little, too late.
Adam and Usher battled it out, selling Judith Hill the world. Team Adam won out, and the last artist of the night was by far the best of the night.
Watch Judith Hill's audition:
So here’s how the team’s ended up after blind audition night no. 1:
Team Adam: Judith Hill
Team Shakira: Mark Andrew, Kris Thomas
Team Usher: Jess Kellner, Vido
Team Blake: Danielle Bradbery, Christian Porter, The Morgan Twins
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