The show didn’t take it easy on the first audition from country singer, 17-year-old RaeLynn. Her rendition of coach Blake Shelton’s wife Miranda Lambert’s “Hell on Heels” (via her band, Pistol Annies) could’ve counted her out after the first verse. He didn’t take well to a performer who tried one of Miranda’s songs last season. But, RaeLynn added her own spin on the song that won over Adam Levine first, then Blake. The two coaches argued over their visions for her career.
And while Adam may have meant it as a compliment that the singer could be bigger than the country genre, Blake didn’t appreciate the comment much. In the end, RaeLynn picked the country singer (which was to be expected).
Chicago’s Jesse Campbell impressed the coaches on his version of “A Song For You.” Originally performed by seventies rocker pianist Leon Russell, it has been performed by a wide variety of artists across genres. Adam, Cee Lo Green, and Christina Agulera turned their chairs almost right away with Blake following later. (Blake later told Jesse, “I was the only dumb ass missing the show”.)
While the single dad had the pick of the coaches, Christina won Jesse over in the end.
Juliet Simms’ take on The Beatles’ “Oh! Darling” won over Cee Lo and Adam right off. Christina would join them later, telling the singer that she “blew my socks off.” When it was Adam’s turn to talk, Christina had something else to say and he got a bit angry by the interruption. She says Adam needs to be the center of attention, which caused Adam to retort, “Christina isn’t one of the best coaches.”
Meanwhile, Juliet found it funny that Cee Lo stayed quiet as the two fought over her. She ended up picking Cee Lo.
Chris Man (whose mother is currently fighting pancreatic cancer) won over both Cee Lo and Christina with the “Because We Believe.” Blake just admitted he didn’t understand a word of the performance. Christina may have won him over by telling him she knows what to do with real vocalists. So, to Christina he went.
The premiere episode ended with a Mickey Mouse Club reunion for Christina and contestant Tony Lucca. The two used to perform together on the Disney Channel series in the early-90s. The 35-year-old sang “Trouble” and won Adam over first.
Christina said Tony had a silky tone to his voice and Blake mentioned that he could sense that there was a real professional quality to the performance that meant he has been at this for a while. In the end, Tony honored Adam’s belief in his ability and chose him. Then as Christina was turning around, the camera caught her chin drop. She had apparently recognized who he was and ran backstage for a reunion.
Blake Shelton says, “There are some country singers that are really good”.
Shelton, who coached pop singer Dia Frampton to the final four last year, told People.com, “We had a few last year but we didn’t end up with a country singer in the final four.”