Blake Shelton has been a coach on “The Voice” since it first premiered in 2011.
He’s the only coach that’s appeared in all twenty-one seasons and he’s coached winning singers eight times. In a December 2021 interview with PEOPLE, the “God’s Country singer” revealed that part of the reason he’s stayed on the show so long is that he’s learned to say no to certain things.
“We’ve gotten so good at making that show,” Shelton said. “They’ve been able to really work hard at making the parts that I don’t like about being on television a lot better.” He also says he’s become more particular about what sort of press he does for the show.
“That’s really helped. I mean, enough is enough. I’m sick of myself at this point,” Shelton told the outlet. “How many times am I going to talk about my strategy? So they’ve been good at picking the things that really can move the dial and concentrating on that stuff.”
For fans concerned that Shelton might be gearing up to leave “The Voice,” this could be good news. He seems to be making the show work for him rather than making plans to leave it.
Shelton Says Kelly Clarkson ‘Hasn’t Learned to Say No’ to ‘Goofy Things’
Shelton told PEOPLE that he’s made it clear that he’s mainly interested in the coaching aspect of the show. “It’s like, ‘Hey, let me get in here and rehearse and work with these kids and let’s dial back some of the goofy stuff,'” he said.
He also said that his fellow coach Kelly Clarkson, who has been on the show since 2018, has a different attitude towards “The Voice” than he does. “Kelly hasn’t learned to say ‘no’ to anything yet. So, she gets to do a lot of legwork on the goofy things we do on that show,” he said.
Shelton hasn’t totally given up on “goofy” segments, though. For the season 21 finale of “The Voice,” Shelton, Clarkson, and John Legend each appeared in pre-taped comedy sketches. Shelton’s was a commercial parody promoting a cologne called Nighttime Camo, an echo of the parody he did for a fictional cologne called Manuré a couple of seasons back.
Clarkson’s sketch showed her driving around while a GPS with her voice gave bad directions, poking fun at her supposed overuse of the word “navigated” this season. Legend was joined by “The Office” alum Ed Helms and Randall Park of “Fresh Off the Boat” for a sketch about the three men starting an acapella group.
Shelton Says It’s ‘Really Hard to Get Mad at Ariana’
Before the season 21 premiere of “The Voice”, Clarkson had first-time coach Ariana Grande as a guest on “The Kelly Clarkson Show.” She told the “Thank U Next” singer that the other coaches were “terrified” of her joining the show and getting votes from her huge fan base.
However, Grande was the only coach to have no artists make it to the top five. Girl Named Tom of Team Kelly won, becoming the first trio to win “The Voice.” In an interview with PEOPLE, Shelton said he’s still trying to figure out what kind of competitor Grande is.
“I have not been able to really pin Ariana down yet as what kind of rival she is,” he said. “It’s really hard to get mad at Ariana enough to really go for her throat because she’s the sweetest kid that you’ll ever meet.”
It will be interesting to see if Grande returns for season 22. She certainly seems to have enjoyed her experience on “The Voice.”
“This was such an incredibly cherished experience. every human that works so incredibly hard (quite literally nonstop) on this show has a permanent place in my heart,” she captioned an Instagram post.