Midas Whale (Ryan Hayes and Jon Peter Lewis) performs for Blake Shelton,… (Trae Patton / NBC )
How quickly we move on. Tuesday's Season 4 blind auditions marked Shakira's and Usher's second night on "The Voice," and it was already beginning to feel as though they'd been on the show forever. Cee Lo? Xtina? Who are they again?
The new coaches happily, scrappily continued to grapple with Blake Shelton and Adam Levine for talent, and the teams began to take shape. By the end of the night, Usher, Shelton and Levine each had three of the 12 singers they need to complete their teams, and Shakira had four.
Shakira picked up 32-year-old country singer Tawnya Reynolds, originally from New Mexico, who has been trying to break through in Nashville for years. Levine, Shakira and Usher all spun their chairs for Reynolds. Usher did so after enlisting Shelton's help in trying to get Reynolds to pick him, which may have been why Shelton, the country expert among the coaches/mentors, didn't turn around.
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Reynolds chose Shakira, who may have sealed the deal when she whipped out her jokey "English-to-Country Dictionary" and got a few laughs using words such as "reckon" and "much obliged." Saying she was ready to "try something new," Reynolds did reckon she'd go with Team Shakira, and Shakira, naturally, was much obliged.
Despite the fact that 27-year-old model Josiah Hawley sang one of Levine's songs, Maroon 5's "Sunday Morning," and managed to spin Levine around with it, he ultimately opted to join Usher's team.
He'd had his pick of all three male coaches. Levine seemed measured and a little self-flattering with his praise, noting he'd heard a quality in Hawley's "great" voice that reminded him of his own. Shelton went for a laugh, trying to mold his hair into Hawley's "badass" 'do. Usher played it humble: "If you want the truth, you should be on my team," he told Hawley. Apparently, Hawley wanted the truth.
Funny Idaho duo Midas Whale ("might as well," get it?) vowed to be in the competition for the long haul -- the first duo to win the competition.
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They took the first step by turning all four chairs with their take on "Folsom Prison Blues." Though Shelton appealed to their sense of humor, Shakira found common ground with them after discovering both members spoke fluent Spanish (each had spent time in a Spanish-speaking country -- those Idahoans get around), and Usher pointed out he'd been the first to turn around for them, the members chose Levine to be their mentor. They said he'd made a "compelling case."
In the evening's real no-brainer, Cathia, a 19-year-old from the Bronx who sang a Spanish song she translated to "I Will Never Give Up," selected Shakira as her mentor -- after spinning every coach except Levine. Shakira said Cathia was "meant to be global" and "take the world by storm." How was she going to turn that down? "I'm going to have to go with someone I know will understand me, and that's gonna be Shakira," she said.
The coaches were most excited about Sarah Simmons, a music student from Memphis, Tenn., who showed off her interesting, modulated voice with Joan Osbourne's "One of Us." Levine and Shakira turned early, and by the time Simmons allowed her voice to crescendo, Shelton and Usher had spun too.
Levine fought hard for Simmons -- telling her she was "incredible" and that he was "150%" certain she could win the show. Shelton also made a strong play, saying she was among the top three singers he'd ever heard audition for the show. Shakira complimented Simmons' softness, sentiment, rasp and dirtiness, and told her she needed a female coach. Everyone claimed to be from Tennessee, but it was Levine who closed the deal. He was thrilled. The others? Crushed.
What did you think of Tuesday's blind auditions?
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