'The Voice' Alum Katrina Parker Recaps This Week's Six-Person Showdown
One night, six contestants and twelve songs made for a mixed bag on this week’s The Voice. It was especially interesting to see the choices the contestants made for themselves versus the songs their coaches assigned them. Now let’s sit by the fireside, children, and talk about my favorite moments.
The Elephant in the Room. Before we move on to this week’s show, we have to acknowledge last week’s shocking elimination of former front runner Judith Hill. Was it the risky song choice? Was she just too polished for voters to get behind? I can’t say, but her absence was felt this week. Even at her worst, Judith was head and shoulders above most of the competition.
Best Performance. My favorite performance this week had to be Sasha Allen’s “Ain’t No Way.” I know Sasha has had similar moments before with “Oh Darling” and “At Last,” but I don’t care. I want more songs that indulge her inner torch singer, and I’m glad she made this selection. The staging was elegant, she looked beautiful (in that yellow femme fatale dress) and the song really allowed her to unleash that huge, emotive voice to good effect. Was it as daring as her coach’s choice for her? No, but it certainly felt like a better fit.
I’ve Got a Sax With Me. Was I hallucinating when Christina Milian handed Holly Tucker a saxophone and asked her to play? No? Well the Sprint Skybox is a curious place where wonderfully weird things happen. The only thing that would have made that moment better would have been a sax rendition of Wham’s “Careless Whisper.”
And the Crowd Goes Wild. There is something indefinable about Michelle Chamuel’s appeal. Maybe it’s her quirky personality. Maybe it’s her intense onstage charisma and consistent connection to the lyrics she sings. Whatever the reason, it WORKS, and her performance of “I Knew You Were Trouble” was no exception. She started a little shaky but rocked the Hell out of this song by the second half, getting one of the biggest crowd reactions of the night. Watch out, Season 4. Your underdog is quickly becoming the top dog!
Saloon Girls Gone Wild. I never expected to see dancers alongside The Swon Brothers, but there they were – saloon girls swinging and swaying to “Wagon Wheel.” The song was fun, but the dancing was a touch awkward in context. This over the top staging made me miss the simplicity of last week’s campfire and tumbleweeds. Who knew?!
Oh Hey, T-Swizzle! Taylor Swift + Michelle Chamuel = too much adorkability in one room. My brain couldn’t process it, but I do recall loving Michelle’s reaction and Taylor’s hot red lipstick.
Biggest Surprise. While the coaches gave Holly Tucker more kudos for her coach’s pick last night, I preferred her song choice “My Wish.” We already know she can get angry. We also know she can sing really, really well, but this was the first time I’ve been truly moved by a performance. She was passionate, genuine and sang with grace and restraint rather than just belting. It was a nice surprise and one of my favorite songs of the night. Plus everybody loves lighthouses, am I right?
Corniest Joke. This would have to be Carson Daly’s “I hope the bar is open after the show” quip after The Swon Brothers Saloon experience. Come on, Carson. Don’t try to make us believe you drink anything but Zima. I’m no fool.
Holy Velcro, Batman. My reaction to Sasha Allen’s “Before He Cheats” can only be expressed in punctuation – it started out like this - “!!!!” and ended like this – “??!??.” I loved the bombastic arrangement and the confidence with which she tackled Shakira’s bold song choice, but I was honestly uncomfortable watching her tear her dress off and occasionally gyrate onstage. Yes, she gamely put her heart (and hips) into it and proved she’s incredibly versatile, but it still felt more off-putting than enjoyable for me. Kudos to her for having the balls to do it though!
I Googled You. Those words are enough to strike fear in anyone’s hearts, whether it’s coming from a prospective employer, a blind date or your mom. However, when Blake Shelton said it to Adam Levine, it seemed less like a threat and more like an endearment – another brick in the wall of their sweet bromance.
Our Little Girl’s Growing Up Fast. Danielle Bradbury has a flawless country voice, but I don’t always feel like she emotionally connects to what she’s singing (I mean, she is pretty young to be tackling country themes like heartbreak and nostalgia). That being said, Danielle seemed the most connected I’ve ever seen her on “A Little Bit Stronger.” She found her place in the song and took more vocal risks, stepping out of her comfort zone and surprising us with some power notes. Our little country singer’s growing up fast, y’all.
Skid Row Goes Country – Poor Adam. Navigating the murky waters of country music has to be difficult for a rocker like him, but he brokered the right country/rock merger with Amber Carrington’s “I’ll Remember You.” Was it her best performance of the season? No, but it was a memorable moment and a savvy choice for his last contestant standing.
Who were your favorites this week? Leave your thoughts in the comments, and tune in Monday at 8PM EST as I live-tweet the next episode of The Voice (@katrinapmusic).