Last night was the premiere episode of The Voice‘s 14th season, with Kelly Clarkson joining the cast of judges. Carson Daly returned as host and a brand new batch of singers took the stage for part 1 of the Blind Auditions. What made things a little difficult for a couple of the judges was the new feature on the show … getting blocked. Each coach has one use of the block, which has the purpose of blocking a fellow judge from being able to bid for a singer to be on their team. Blake Shelton was the first to use his block, during the very first audition, for 17-year-old Britton Buchanan, blocking Adam Levine from trying to bring Buchanan on board for his team.
Tonight, another round of contestants will be featured on part 2 of the Blind Auditions and we will continue to update this post as the show airs. Get to know each of the contestants who have made it through so far, see which team each of them is on, and watch their performances below.
On the premiere episode of The Voice 2018, Britton Buchanan blows the coaches away with his version of Ray LaMontagne’s song “Trouble.” Buchanan, who plays the guitar as well, was 17 years old at the time of his audition and today he is 18. Alicia Keys, Blake Shelton and Adam Levine all turned their chairs around to battle it out for Buchanan, but Levine was blocked by Shelton, leaving him unable to bring Buchanan onto his team. Buchanan actually ends up on Keys’ team.
Cole performs Marcy Playground’s “Sex and Candy” for his blind audition and he ends up with Adam Levine as his coach. According to the Ridgefiled Press, Cole’s real name is Drew Arcoleo and his stage name is Drew Cole. Currently, he resides in Los Angeles and he previously auditioned twice to be on the show. Third time’s a charm.
Rayshun LaMarr was full of life and energy in his blind audition, which really made the judges’ day. He performed “Don’t Stop Believing” by Journey, which excited coach Adam Levine before LaMarr even uttered one note. Levine almost immediately hit his button to turn around and Alicia Keys wasn’t far behind. LaMarr became emotional, talking about how he overcame cancer and how he was so happy to be on the show. This brought Kelly Clarkson to tears and she said she wished she had turned her chair around because she loves him so much as a person. LaMarr decided to join Levine’s team for this season.
Johnson performed the Meghan Trainor feat. John Legend song “Like I’m Gonna Lose You” during her blind audition. She was reportedly honoring her deceased grandfather with her performance. Adam Levine quickly turned his chair around for her and he was followed immediately by Kelly Clarkson. Later in the song, Alicia Keys turned her chair as well. Levine said he found her stunning from her image to her voice. Ultimately, Johnson chooses Keys to be her coach.
For her performance on the show, she sang Labrinth feat. Emeli Sandé’s “Beneath Your Beautiful” during her blind audition. Kelly Clarkson was the first judge to turn around her chair for the young singer and Blake Shelton turned his chair at the last second. Clarkson told Cartelli that she is the first artist she has ever turned her chair for on the show and she was very excited at the possibility of working with Cartelli. Much to her excitement, Cartelli told Clarkson she’s been a fan of hers since she was 4 years old and she started singing when she was practically a baby. So, of course, Cartelli joined Clarkson’s team.
For D.R. King’s audition, he performs the song “Believe” by Imagine Dragons and he ends up on Kelly Clarkson’s team. Clarkson was the first to turn around for his performance.
Out the gate, Lee takes the stage performing with his guitar and a delightfully raspy voice with a country tune, so it makes sense that he join Blake Shelton’s team. For his performance, he sang Kenny Chesney’s “Never Wanted Nothing More” and Kelly Clarkson was the first person to turn her chair for the singer. Lee is originally from Kentucky, but currently hails from Florida, but he lived in Nashville for a few years, trying to make it big. He ended up in the corporate world so that he could support his wife and children. Lee said that the reason he went with Shelton is because his kids are big fans.
Kilgore has a deep and sultry singing voice and for his blind audition, he chose to sing Chris Young’s “Tomorrow”. Alicia Keys, Blake Shelton and Kelly Clarkson turned their chairs around for Kilgore, with Adam Levine following towards the end of the performance. Keys chose to implement her block against Shelton and rival Adam Levine couldn’t have been more thrilled. It was a four-chair turn for Kilgore and he ended up going with Kelly Clarkson as his coach.
Growing up in the small town of Buffalo, Texas and getting into cheerleading in school, Kilgore didn’t feel comfortable about being gay. On the show, Kilgore revealed that, “I’ve never been out of the closet when I did country music. The Voice is the first opportunity that I have to be my myself in my entire life.”
Kyle Jade is actually a former backup singer for Jennifer Hudson, who was a judge on season 13 of The Voice. For her blind audition on the show, she blew away the judges with her rendition of Aretha Franklin’s song “See Saw.” Jade’s faith is very important to her. According to Idol Chatter D, she grew up in Topeka, Kansas, and there, she performed in school choirs, as well as the Greater St. Paul Church of God in Christ. At the end of Jade’s audition on The Voice, she ended up on Blake Shelton’s team.
In addition to singing, Levelle Davison loves clothes. He feels his singing style is gospel and soul with a little bit a grit. His first pick would be Adam Levine, but he’d love to work with any of the other coaches and his family is a fan of Blake Shelton’s. Both Shelton and Levine turned their chairs for Davison at nearly the same time as Davison performed “To Love Somebody” by The Bee Gees for his blind audition. Keys said that Davison’s voice has a storyteller vibe to it and Shelton called it magical. Shelton told Davison that he would be the centerpiece of his team if he decided to go with him and in the end, Davison said he loved both coaches, but his heart was with Levine.
When Lovey was 11 years old, she started to write songs and she seems to have an old soul. She hails from a small town in northern California and her community has been very supportive of her musical aspirations. She hopes for a higher level of training on the show. For her blind audition, Lovey decided to sing “I Can’t Help Falling In Love” by Elvis Presley and Kelly Clarkson’s first reaction was that the rendition was “very pretty”. Blake Shelton was the first to turn his chair around and Alicia Keys followed shortly after him. Lovey has a very unique voice and the judges said no one in the competition sounds like her. Ultimately, Lovey picked Keys as her coach.
Molly Stevens is a singer and guitarist, who had difficulty coming out as gay. Today, she is happy and engaged. And, within seconds of her blind audition performance, Blake Shelton turned his chair around. Kelly Clarkson turned around soon after as Stevens performed a song called “Heavenly Day”. Clarkson really seemed to get Stevens, so she chose her to be her coach.
Dylan Hartigan was a child star and appeared in a bunch of commercials. He then got into music and became involved with a boy band that broke up. He returned home and built a studio in his parents’ house. They have been very supportive of his journey. He hopes to become a folk rock musician. Kelly Clarkson ends up hitting her button to turn her chair around. She is the sole coach to turn around, so she didn’t even have to fight for him to be on her team. Clarkson said that Hartigan’s voice is very solid. Clarkson gave Hartigan a team shirt and said he was the dark horse in the running with his good looks and talent.
Baird is currently in construction, but his dream is to make a living via music. He says that he’s lived in California and Nashville hoping to make it big and he’s worked his whole life for an opportunity like The Voice. Baird is 35 years old. Adam Levine is the first to turn around during his performance and soon Blake Shelton, along with Alicia Keys turn around as well. Kelly Clarkson was the last to turn around, which meant that Baird got a four-chair turn for his audition. Baird ends up picking Shelton as his coach.