Last night, Shakira's and Adam's teams took the stage. Ten extraordinary singers gave us their all, but only six moved on. I put out my predictions a few days ago, and only got one right with Team Shakira. But, I'll be the first to admit that after seeing their performances last night, I completely agree with Shakira's choices. Even before she announced her picks, I knew I only had one right. As for Team Adam, I predicted two correctly, and the third could have went either way. But, I think Adam made a good choice for his team.
Deja Hall followed with her rendition of “Battlefield.” I think this was a good song choice for her, as she needed to show us the other side of her soft and angelic voice. She started soft and strong but did seem a little nervous. As the song grew in strength, however, so did she. Deja did form the connection with the audience and never strayed from the pocket, but I don't think she gave the song the power it needed, and the power that I felt she was capable of. She was solid, and it was a great performance... just not as strong as she needed it to be.
Patrick Thomson was another artist Shakira stole during the Battle Rounds. He has this natural roughness and rasp in his voice that makes him unique on Team Shakira. I thought his performance of “Trouble” was soulful and true to himself. He had the power, but after what Kristen and Tess delivered, I didn't think the performance was enough to compete with them. I like Patrick, and I don't doubt that he has a bright future ahead of him.
After all was said and sung, Shakira had to pick which three she would be taking to Lives. Before the performances, I thought it would be easy, but after... Dani and Kristen definitely changed the game.
Shakira's Top 3:
Adam's team was next and Delvin Choice started it off with his performance of “Let's Stay Together.” Delvin sees himself as an R&B/Soul singer and wanted to showcase that last night. Now, I admit, that this isn't my favorite style of music, but I can't deny how well Delvin did. Right from the beginning of the song, I felt as though I was sitting in an upscale Blues Bar. He had a great sound and a very strong Bluesy feel. The audience loved him, and the coaches loved the performance.
Jake Barker followed with “She Will Be Loved” by Adam's band. It's always a huge risk to do your coach's song. Adam obviously has a deeper and more personal attachment to his own song than he would with another artist's and will probably be much more critical of how his song was performed. Jake did have great tone and control, and for someone who's had very little stage experience, he did really well last night. His vocals were very strong, and his falsettos were spot on, but I didn't feel as strong of a connection to him or the song as I would have liked. But, all things considered, it was really well done.
Just when I thought I'd seen her best, Kat Perkins came on and blew me away with “Open Arms.” She hit the stage looking absolutely stunning, and from the first note, she grabbed the audience and never let go. Her power never faltered, and she hit every note flawlessly and effortlessly. Her emotional connection to the song was true, and you could feel her devotion to it. Usher told Adam he had a sure thing with Kat, and Adam commented that there “has not been a better performance.” Overall, it was an incredible and memorable performance and definitely part of my Top 3 for the night.
Morgan Wallen picked “Stay” for his song, and he did okay. His low and raspy voice is rather unique in the competition and fit well with his song choice. I felt, however, there were times that his nerves got to him a bit, but he did still have a nice tone. My only problem is he seemed to show a very limited range during the song. I would have liked to see him expand that some more. The coaches liked it (and I enjoyed it), but I didn't think it was enough last night to advance him.
Closing out the show and the last for Team Adam was Christina Grimmie singing “I Won't Give Up,” and her performance rounds out my top three. She started off softly but with a beautiful tone. The way she chose to arrange the song allowed her to make it her own and show just how big of a range she has and how well she can control it. She worked the stage. She engaged the audience, and she killed it. She was like a ball of fire that engulfed the entire room... an amazing performer and an amazing performance. If Christina keeps moving in the direction she's going, she is a very strong front-runner for the win.
After his team performed, in my opinion, Adam's choices as to whom he was taking to the Live Shows weren't as difficult as Shakira's. The performances last night were great, but some completely stood out more than others.
Adam's Top 3
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All 10 performances from last night's Voice Playoffs are available on iTunes.
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