Cee Lo Basks in Gratitude on 'The Voice' - Rolling Stone
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Cee Lo Basks in Gratitude on ‘The Voice’

Country singer wraps Green in excited hug after getting picked

WE DID IT! WE MADE IT OUT ALIVE! BLIND AUDITIONS ARE OVER! After approximately one trazillion contestants, all 64 team slots are filled and the last one on board made for Monday night’s most noteworthy moment. It seemed as though soulful farmboy Cody Belew had failed to turn any of the coaches’ chairs when, with a moment to spare, his idol Cee Lo tapped in and turned for him. Belew looked crestfallen until he realized he had nabbed the final spot on the show, at which point he let out along string of expletives, which may have included yelling “HOLY FUCKING SHIT!” directly into the microphone, before practically humping Cee Lo in his giant red chair as a show of appreciation. And out we go on a note of jubilation. On to the power rankings!

Coach: Cee Lo
Rank: #1
Monday night saw the judges filling the final slots for their teams with an air of resignation, but Cee Lo scooped up the talented Jersey girl Chevonne, who was last seen doing background vocals for Lady Gaga. She pulled a cool move by doing the Pretenders’ “Brass in Pocket,” all sass and sashay. And while this wasn’t in her b-roll – and God help the producers if they knew this and were just trying to get it out of her – but Cee Lo said he heard pain in her totally happy but soulful rendition of this classic-rock staple and girl breaks and starts crying about years spent battling an eating disorder (which happened twice on this episode, just a few days after Gaga herself came out about her own struggles with eating disorders). Props to Chevonne for her bravery. She may well be someone we see make it to the final rounds.

Coach: Christina Aguilera
Rank: #2
Xtina bumped up her ranking this week not by virtue of the several big-haired teen divas she picked up – she does that every week – but because of the boss move she pulled as Caitlin Michelle attempted to decide between Blake and Adam. Michelle had just performed a Florence and the Machine song, in the style of Florence and the Machine, with flowing red hair and giant shoes and a billowing, diaphanous caftan not unlike Florence’s. While the boys bickered, Xtina butted in and told her that Blake “doesn’t even know who Florence and the Machine is!” and directed her to go with Adam. 

Coach: Adam Levine
Rank: #3
Levine picked up Michelle because she announced, “I am the farthest thing from normal,” and Levine seems to be the closest thing to a weirdo in people’s minds, which is to say that he probably owns more Radiohead records than the rest of the judges (though Cee Lo is the true punk here). He also nabbed teenage Kayla Nevarez, who we know from her b-roll is tenacious and has a reason to be gunning for this: Her dad is sick with liver disease and her family of seven moved into a tiny two bedroom – she wants a new life. Girl managed to upgrade “American Boy,” and her childhood idol Xtina all but rolled on the ground doing tricks to get her, but instead she went with Adam, telling him as they parted, “We better win this thing.” For a high schooler, she ain’t playin’.

Coach: Blake Shelton
Rank: #4
Serious props to Blake for playing the yet-unheard “we’ve shopped at the same mall in Tennessee card” as a way to get a contestant on his team, but sometimes being a discount-chain-shopping man of the people is not what folks want. They want starpower. Nevertheless, he picked up Rudy Parris, who looks like deathrock Meatloaf, but gave up a lucrative sideman gig with Hank Williams Jr. 30 years ago to parent his daughter. While his voice isn’t, like, riling the audience, his dusty version of “Every Breath You Take” made him stand out. He’s got the experience and control a lot of folks don’t have this season; a shredder and a crooner, he is basically the original model John Mayer. He’s also the only grandparent on the show. Blake also picked up home-schooled Nashville teen songwriter Nicole Johnson, who was so Taylor Swifted-out you expected to see a number written in marker on the back of her hand.

Most exactly perfect mix of Corey Feldman and Corey Haim ever seen in one adult human: Rod Michael, a 31-year-old ex-boy bander whose real name sounds likea porn name. Michael’s b-roll tragedy was that he spent a few years being a teen celeb in Europe only to return to his native Pennsylvania a nobody. He could dance, he was hella tan and was the secret baby of the two Coreys – but he couldn’t really sing and so no chairs for him.

Hands down best non-depressing b-roll so far: Belew, whose dad, “Mr.Belew,” spoke in a heavy drawl about how he’d be working on their farm on a fence or in the barn and Cody would just be singing. Cut to Cody saying “In a previous life, I was an elderly black lady,” to him talking about how why he idolizes Cee Lo for his flamboyance – a description that sounded like he was actually talking about Cher. Please, in the name of all unholy TV singing shows, let Cody do a countrified “And  I Am Telling You I’m Not Going” before he gets booted.

Most stunning display of gratitude: Country gal Jessica Cayne got no chairs, but acted like her opportunity to be on the stage was the same as winning, and talked about how she woke up every morning when she was in treatment for her eating disorder and dreamed of being on stage again. And you know she meant it.

Previous recap: Blake Shelton Wins Over Former Hey Monday Singer


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