Season 15 of NBC’s The Voice premiered on Monday, September 24th for its first round of blind auditions, with two standout country performers looking to separate themselves from the pack.
First up was Kameron Marlowe, who made such a quick first impression on the coaches’ panel that both Kelly Clarkson and Blake Shelton turned their chairs before Marlowe was 30 seconds into his song. It didn’t hurt that the song happened to be Luke Combs’ smoldering bonfire of regret, “One Number Away,” which highlighted the soulful agility of the North Carolina native’s howling vocals. He ended up on Team Blake, but not without some serious lobbying on the part of Clarkson and admiring comments from coaches Adam Levine and Jennifer Hudson.
Taking a different approach entirely was Mikele Buck, who opted for a tender rendition of Brooks & Dunn’s “She Used to Be Mine.” Shelton and Clarkson were both interested early on, but held off on the preemptive swivel, trying to fake the other out. It was all a ruse though, with both coaches turning their chairs just as the bearded father of three finished his crisp and classic rendition. Levine stepped up with the assist on Buck’s team choice, helping Clarkson secure her first country artist and depriving Shelton of the twangy monopoly. It also didn’t hurt that Clarkson is Buck’s middle daughter’s favorite artist.
Season 15 of The Voice continues Tuesday night (9/25) at 8 p.m. ET with another round of blind auditions. Meanwhile, country star Kelsey Ballerini has begun her online-only compliment to the show, coaching contestants who did not make it through their auditions in what’s being dubbed The Comeback Stage.