Wednesday, November 12, 2014

The Voice: America saves Damien, Pharrell saves Sugar

When America didn't save Sugar Joans (Pharrell's team) on NBC's The Voice, I became concerned that people may not vote for soul singers this year, including the talented Louisiana native Damien (Adam's team). But the votes came through for the natural.

As far as Sugar goes, Pharrell saved her, so cool. But despite being a tad surprised that America didn't, I admit I had some concern for her safety.

She slayed Aretha Franklin's version  of "I Say a Little Prayer for You," but it may have been the wrong song for the show's demographic. That and I think wearing that Pharrellesque hat the week before made her look like the Wicked Witch from the Wizard of Oz. People may have shied away from her unusual look.

Also, while Pharrell may be trying to bring back the 1960s in music ("Happy") and fashion (He had on love beads, even, and kept talking with his hands together and bowing his head like any minute he was going to say "Namaste."), the old school song he assigned Sugar plus the flower-child styling made her performance look dated.

One more thing, Pharrell may not have noticed, but the voting crowd seems to like a competitor less when a judge makes over her excessively, which he does with Sugar.

All that said, that girl Sugar can sing. But so can her teammate DaNica Shirey, and it's possible the vote was split between the two soulful singers, giving DaNica a slight edge. She sang Joni Mitchell's "Help Me," and really did it well. Of course, Mitchell's lyrics and music are fantastic, too. I'll always love Burt Bacharach and Aretha, but Joni Mitchell's "Help Me" has transferred better across the years than Aretha's arrangement of "Say a Little Prayer."

Shock of the night, Blake said he'd never heard "Help Me" before. Say whaaahhhht!

Some viewers may have been shocked that Elyjuh Rene went home because he did a wonderful job with Sam Smith's "Latch," however, he may have exhorted the audience to support him one too many times, interrupting an otherwise lovely performance with "Come on!" I find that annoying, and maybe other people do, too. I also think people don't vote against braces.

America also saved Anita Antoinette of Jamaica (Gwen's team), who has a really high lovability factor. She performed Meghan Trainor's "All About That Bass," with the reggae revved up. But the first person saved on Gwen's team was Taylor John Williams. That did not surprise me at all. That boy has star all over him when he's performing, and he put his own spin on "Stuck in the Middle with You," the Stealers Wheel classic.

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