Country contestants on The Voice have one coach on their mind when they walk into the blind auditions… Blake Shelton. The country music superstar has the ties and know-how to launch a rising talent in the genre more than anyone on the panel besides him. This knowledge was taken into account when the Oklahoma native landed two more country hopefuls for his Season 14 team on the NBC hit show.
First to join Shelton’s team was Bransen Ireland, who performed the late Don Williams’ “Tulsa Time.” While it took Shelton time to turn his chair, he eventually hit his button to claim the 28-year-old Tennessee native for his team. Coach Adam Levine couldn’t get the moment pass without getting the final word, saying “You’re so good on this show you get people who were singing about your hometown on your team, congratulations.”
While he spends much of his time pushing numbers with his day job as an accountant, Nashville resident Jordan Kirkdorffer hoped a coach would push their button so he’d be able to compete on the reality competition show. Putting his own spin on Brett Young’s “In Case You Didn’t Know,” he eventually earned turns from both Shelton and Levine. Warned that he’d have less country competition on Levine’s team by Kelly Clarkson, Kirkdorffer went with his gut and chose Shelton as his coach.
One of the night’s most talked about moment was when 33-year-old Stephanie Skipper stepped out on stage to perform Clarkson’s “Piece By Piece.” Her passionate performance earns not only turns from Shelton and Levine, but tears from Clarkson over their shared connection. While Shelton battles hard for her to take a spot on his team, Skipper ends up choosing Maroon 5 frontman Levine as her coach.
At the end of the fifth episode of the blind auditions, Shelton’s team is nearly complete with 11 out of 12 contestants: Kyla Jade, Kaleb Lee, Pryor Baird, Brett Hunter, Austin Giorgio, Spensha Baker, Wilkes, Jaron Strom, Jeslee, Bransen Ireland, Jordan Kirkdorffer.
Tune in to The Voice on Mondays and Tuesdays on NBC at 8/7c.