“I was always told, ‘You won’t be able to do the normal things other people do.’ And I want to prove to them: ‘You know what? fake. Whatever your disability, you can do whatever you want,” proclaimed 24-year-old soul-pop singer Ali.
And Ali certainly accomplished that mission on Monday, night three of The voice Season 23 blind auditions.
Ali was born with ‘profound hearing loss’, which his musician father realized when he banged one of his drums really hard with a toddler Ali nearby, and his daughter didn’t not even flinch. “It was devastating,” Ali’s mother, sitting with Ali’s father and talking with Voice host Carson Daly, recalled. “All these things go through your head like, ‘What about music?’”
Turns out Ali’s mom and dad had nothing to worry about. “My parents, they never really looked at it like I was ‘broken,'” Ali explained. “We worked around that. We worked with. Music is something that I really like. Even if I doubt myself, I will do it. Even though I can’t really hear everything that’s going on, I can feel the music – what it means and what the lyrics are about – and I can also feel the beat. I can feel every little thing coming out of the speaker, and that’s how I’m able to do the things that I do. It’s my super power.
Ali admitted that “it took me a long time to have that kind of courage to do something so big, but she seemed extremely confident on the Voice stage, and just like Season 16 winner Maelyn Jarmon – who also described her own partial deafness as her “superpower” – she had a beautiful raspy but rounded tone and a surprisingly perfect tone. After her lovely cover of Roberta Flack’s “Killing Me Softly With His Song,” she told the coaches, “The fun fact about me is that I’m hard of hearing. I wear two hearing aids. I was born deaf. I am so lucky to be able to share this. And they were understandably amazed.
“If you lined up all the singers we’ve heard from so far and then said, ‘Pick the one that’s hard of hearing,’ you’d probably be the one. last one I would say,” Blake Shelton said with a laugh. “That voice was just amazing!”
“You are amazing. Any kind of adversity you’ve had in your life, you’re just jumping over obstacles here, and it’s amazing to watch,” added Niall Horan.
As for the two coaches who actually turned for Ali – Kelly Clarkson and Chance the Rapper – Kelly marveled: “Your races were so complex and cool and different. It’s a gift. …Sometimes you hear a song that you know so well, that’s stuck with you, and when some people change it, it can be a little weird. But the changes you made, they were so You. I was like, ‘I need turn around and see who sings that! »
Despite Kelly’s lavish and heartfelt praise, I thought Ali would pick Chance when he mentioned he worked with an “awesome organization” called Definitely Dope that puts on ASL hip-hop performances for national music festivals. “I have made many friends from the deaf and hard of hearing community [through Definitely Dope], and I think it’s so great if they could turn to someone who loves music as much as they do,” Chance told Ali. “I think it’s super important and powerful, and naturally you just have an amazing voice; all the choices you made were very emotional. I would love to hear you sing gospel.
The fact that Ali was also a singer/gospel fan seemed to give Chance even more of an edge, but eventually Ali joined Team Kelly. I’m just glad Ali took that “leap of faith” and found a place on THE Voice. “I’m delighted to work with someone who experiences music on different levels from mine. She’s so bold and confident, and I really want to get into the songs with her,” Kelly said of her new cast member. “I want to know what it is to feel music.”
Monday brought other standout singers who brought the thrills. Here are the other successful blind auditions of the evening:
Ryley Tate Wilson, 15: “Dancing Alone”
This bedroom pop prodigy and self-proclaimed eccentric delivered a heartfelt and vulnerable cover of Robyn which Chance described as “fire” and had Niall exclaim, “My head almost exploded!” It was the best audition we’ve seen here by far. Niall – who recalled being super nervous when he auditioned for a ‘similar show’ as a teenager as he went through a pubescent voice change – was amazed at the maturity, poise and Ryley’s voice control.
Who shot? Kelly (“light years ahead of the others!”) and Niall, followed by Blake and Chance.
Result: Nial team. Apparently, Niall’s threat to “come to blows in the parking lot” with Blake over Ryley worked. But such threats were probably unnecessary: While Ryley confessed that he originally planned to join Team Kelly, even Blake knew he was still Ryley’s “fourth choice.”
Jamar Langley, 36: “Try me”
Jamar waited long He started singing at age 3, started writing “PG” love songs at age 11, and formed a vocal group with his older brothers at age 14. But then Jamar had to put his music career on hold when he became a dad in his early twenties. He seemed nervous to be on such a big stage, but maybe he’s finally ready for prime time.
Who shot? Chance and Blake, who both decided to try Jamar at the very last minute. “It was a perfect example of not giving up, because [your performance] didn’t start out perfect, but then it got really good – and then it got great“said Blake. “It’s always cool to see someone who really wants to do it,” Chance agreed.
Result: Team Luck.
Allie Keck, 28: “Paris (Ooh La La)”
Oh la la la la, indeed! This Nashville-based American powerhouse came out with a bang with her feisty and oh-so-sexy cover of Grace Potter, which Kelly described as looking like “Janis and Ann Wilson at the same time.” Chance actually said that Allie looked like a human electric guitar. Blake shouted: “It is what am I talking about – someone on this show who rocks!”
Who shot? Blake and Kelly. Niall confessed he regretted not turning – as well as he should have, because it was a real missed opportunity. As noted by Kelly and Blake, Allie will be going her own way this season.
Result: Team Kelly, which was clearly the right decision. Together, these dynamic ladies will rock Season 23 for sure.
Walker Wilson, 24: “Hurricane”
This old-school Southern rocker’s day job (or night job, technically) is working as a bouncer at a Nashville bar, but he yearns to make a real name for himself on Music Row. Blake was already thinking about Waylon and Willie covers for Walker, and I think Walker might be a favorite with Voice accustomed if Walker there in this way.
Who shot? Only Blake – but let’s face it, there was no other coach who had a chance anyway. Kelly even admitted that’s why she didn’t bother pressing her button. “The minute you started, [Blake] was everywhere. You are a match made in heaven,” Niall said.
Result: The Blake team. “I’m damn proud to have you on my team,” Blake told Walker.
Manasseh Samone, 22: “Get up”
The classically trained opera singer tried last season but didn’t turn the chairs, with coach John Legend advising her to work on controlling her prominent vibrato. This time around, she sang for three coaches who had never heard her before (John is out this season, while Kelly took time off last season). And one of Season 23’s rookies, Chance, was impressed with Manasseh’s “unique and specific” new and improved tone on her anthem Andra Day, even comparing her to a young Jennifer Hudson.
Who shot? Only Chance, who enthusiastically called having this diva all to himself his “biggest blessing of the season so far.”
Result: Team Chance, of course.
Jérôme Godwin III, 20 years old: “pov”
The dental student with the superstar smile said he was at a “crossroads” in his life, wondering if he should pursue his real career dream rather than his safer Plan B. Well, I guess he’s going to have to take at least a semester off from dental school! Although it took Jerome a while to turn any chair – as Chance pointed out, he had some height issues – his “super soulful” runs, his mastery of his lower register and his sheer passion finally made two coaches smile.
Who shot? Niall and Kelly.
Result: Nial team.
EJ Michels, 31: “Indulge with me”
In a classic TV moment where the face doesn’t match the voice, everyone was stunned when they turned around and saw a high-pitched piano male, not a Carole King singer on stage. This former frontman of the pop-rock band Foreign Figures, who grew up in Utah a conversationalist but eventually found the courage to come out as gay and showcase his true, authentic self on the Voice stage, poured all her passion and pain into Adele’s “Easy on Me” which was not easy to pull off. Blake said the breakup of EJ’s “so raw and honest” vocals “created an angst” that “emotionally had me on edge”, and joked that if EJ could have that effect on “the most callous person in the music industry who sat here for 23 seasons,” he would surely be unstoppable.
Who shot? Luck and Blake.
Result: Team Blake! It was another curveball from EJ. I thought Chance had this one in the bag when he praised EJ’s “heady upper register” and suggested neo-soul covers of D’Angelo and Maxwell, which I think Really reportedly worked for EJ. Too bad. “I can’t wait to hear EJ next round, play some Tim McGraw or something,” grumbled Chance sarcastically.
Laura Littleton, 26: “Sign of the times”
This Tennessee bluegrass singer had an interesting, iconoclastic style — Kelly described it as “Dolly Parton meets Florence and the Machine” — but I thought Harry Styles’ space ballad was a little too big for her anxious tone. However, Laura’s creative song arrangement and bubbly personality more than made up for that. This girl was so friendly, even the only trainer who doesn’t turn for her, Chance, finally jumped on stage to give her a big hug.
Who shot? Kelly, Niall and Blake – but Kelly blocked the latter coach, his longtime rival.
Result: Nial team! I have a feeling Laura would have chosen Blake if she had that option, as she kindly said she was “so honored” and “grateful” to be a part of Blake’s final season. This comment initially made Kelly feel “really awful” for depriving Laura of a Team Blake opportunity – but she soon felt path more horrible on not block Niall, the coach with the obvious connection to the original “Sign of the Times” artist and new rival who is groomed to be The New Blake. Whoops.
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