The Voice Battles, Week 2: Inspiration for All

Not only does The Voice help people pursue their dreams, but it also presents artists with incredible stories. I enjoy watching the process for the talent and for the inspiration. I want to thank all the artists for persevering through their trials and becoming role models for people who are struggling and thinking of giving up. All of you, whether you make it to the next round or not, have inspired me to continue pursuing my own dreams. Thank you!

Round 1

Team Christina: Geoff McBride vs. Sera Hill “Chain of Fools”

Geoff is 51 and is living out a dream for his kids. Geoff’s father was a singer and died when he was six. I can’t imagine how painful that was, especially since his dad was Geoff’s hero. I’m glad he is able to take that tragedy in his life and make it a positive experience for his children. Geoff says he wants to be a hero to his own children. He has succeeded, in my eyes, just for the mere fact that he is 51 and still fighting for his dream. Never giving up is a great lesson for his children.

Sera feels blessed to work with Christina and Jewel. She looks at them as role models because of what they’ve accomplished with their lives. Sera hopes to achieve the heights as a woman that these women have achieved. Before The Voice she worked as a hotel receptionist. Sera inspired Christina to get out of her chair and sing with Sera. It was endearing to see her try to sing with one of her idols.

The battle was incredible because both singers were wonderful. In my opinion, Sera won, but Geoff was a fierce competitor.

One of my favorite comments came from Blake when he said that they both clearly sang the “crap out of the song.” I love him.

Christina had a tough decision. She went with her gut and picked Sera.

After the decision, Geoff revealed that his mother and brother were in the crowd, and it was the first time in 51 years they were in the audience to see him perform. Even the losers of the competition are winners. I love that!

Round 2

Team Blake: Charlotte Sometimes vs. Lex Land (two of the coolest names I have ever heard). “Pumped Up Kicks”

The rehearsals had some awkward moments because the two artists are complete opposites: Charlotte is loud and Lex is quiet. What’s interesting about that is it didn’t make me like either one less. Their performance wasn’t great because of the stylistic polarity, but it did have moments of greatness.

Miranda Lambert really liked Lex. She said, “There’s a mystery to you that makes me want to know more about you.” I love that the show embraces every type of performer. With Lex’s introverted personality (at least on stage) I don’t know if she would have had this chance on any other performance-type show.

Charlotte said she wanted to destroy Lex: “I want to win, and I want her to lose.” Coming from anyone else, it would have sounded nasty, but Charlotte is boisterous, and that was just one of her animated comments.

Lex is sweet. She knows she struggles with inhibition: “I don’t want to let another opportunity pass me by because I wasn’t assertive enough.” I think it’s amazing that she is able to pursue her dreams with those fears plaguing her.

I think Charlotte won the battle, but Lex was definitely cool and interesting. The determining factor was Charlotte’s comfort on the stage.

Blake said about Charlotte: “Charlotte gets up there and you can’t take your eyes off of her. That’s what it takes to make a star.” He picked Charlotte.

Lex’s final comment earned my respect: “I’m definitely going to walk away with my head high.”

Round 3

Team Cee Lo: Sarah Golden vs. Juliet Simms “Stay with Me”

This pairing was hard for me to watch because Sarah has a great voice, but she was at a disadvantage right from the beginning. Juliet is beautiful and has the rocker’s voice, which is perfect for a Rod Stewart song. Sarah says over and over again that she is excited to be herself, but that self didn’t have a chance in this battle. I didn’t think it was fair, but I know that the teams have to be whittled down.

I think Juliet won the battle. Sarah is really good though. Cee Lo agreed with me and picked Juliet. I feel bad for Sarah. She had that look like she was used to the disappointment even though she was excited she had the opportunity to be on The Voice.

Round 4

Team Adam: Whitney Myer vs. Kim Yarbrough “No More Drama”

Adam had a hard time with his decision to pair these two in battle: “They’re both powerful singers. I feel like they have to beat each other in order to win.” As a coach, he had to make a difficult decision, but he’s probably right.

During the rehearsals, Whitney looked a bit intimidated by Kim. She sought encouragement from Adam. His position: “Whitney wants to know all the secrets in the How to be Successful handbook. Sadly, that does not exist. But there are a lot of things that you can be told that will help you along.” I like that he’s real with his team.

Kim seemed to really understand the lyrics of the song: “Everybody has some kind of cross to bear in their life, and I feel like I can relate to several different types of problems. It’s such a dramatic song. I think I can use that to my advantage.”

It was hard to pick between the two. Whitney was young and fresh, but Kim had amazing vocals. Adam picked Kim, and I will have to agree with him. I’m still shocked though because he seemed to promise Whitney a long future on the show with the blind auditions with his comment “I feel like you could win this whole thing.”

Kim was ecstatic: “I’m living my dream right now.” That’s why I love this show!

However, the show is difficult when it shows the heartbreak. Whitney attempted to stay positive: “I’m really glad for Kim. She deserves it. She’s worked really hard.” She barely got the words out before she started crying. I choked up as well.

Round 5

Team Christina: Lee Koch vs. Lindsey Pavao “Heart-Shaped Box”

Lee reminds me of Glen Hansard from the movie Once. What I love about Lee is that he did not know the song so he was not good during the rehearsals, but then he was amazing during the performance. Lindsey was amazing from the beginning. I really like her tone and style.

I think Lindsey won, but I like Lee too.

Cee Lo thought Lee looked like Jesus in certain lighting. Lee blessed him. That was a very funny interaction. I love people who have a quick, funny responses.

Adam added to the humor: “Cee Lo found Jesus today. I did not, but I did find an incredibly kind of delightfully creepy performance. I really like it. It was really odd, but in a great way.” Adam felt that Lee’s voice had an otherworldly quality to it, which makes it unique.

Christina picked Lindsey, once again a good choice, but a hard one.

Blake reminded me a little bit of my grandfather with his confused response: “I feel so stupid. I don’t know that song. . . . I would’ve picked “Monster Mash” if I was going for creepy.” Funny, in an old-timer country kind of way. Oh, Blake;)

Round 6

Team Cee Lo: Jamar Rogers vs. Jamie Lono “I Want to Know What Love Is”

This by far was the most difficult battle to watch. Jamar is such a talented inspiration, and Jamie is the sweetest man. When Cee Lo announced the pairing, Jamar said, “My heart just dropped. That’s my boy.” They became good friends, and now they have to battle against each other.

Jamie has these red glasses that make him look so cute, yet vulnerable at the same time. His Johnny Cash rendition is the best cover I’ve ever heard.

Jamar is HIV positive from drug abuse and has straightened out his life. Both are great guys. Who do I cheer for?

Jamie is in awe of Jamar: “I don’t think I’ve ever heard anything like Jamar. He’s an unbelievable vocalist.”

Cee Lo makes a profound statement during rehearsals: “Whoever gets to his moment of clarity first will be the winner.” We can apply that to any competitive situation.

Jamie’s voice cracked a few times. He said, “My biggest struggle when I was growing up was just believing in myself, and this song pretty much sums that up.” I just want to wrap my arms around him and tell him everything is going to be okay.

Jamar was excited to work with his coaches: “I never thought that I would get to sing a duet with Cee Lo. I feel like the luckiest guy in the world….I love Jamie but I’m about to sing my ass off.” I think Jamar just showed that moment of clarity.

Jamie wore the cutest sweater for the performance. He is so innocent and sweet. Before his performance, Jamie said, “I need to pull it together and show the world the beauty inside my soul.” Take it from me, Jamie. You did!

Before Jamar walked on stage, he said, “I represent a comeback from the shadows…and achievement and promise.” Jamar has a look that I can only describe as strengthened humility. I am in awe over what he has overcome.

Their performance was great, but Jamar was the hands-down winner of the battle. I felt that Jamie complimented Jamar’s voice and wished they entered as a duet.

While Adam was praising Jamar, Jamie had a defeated look. I started tearing up. Adam had strong praise for Jamar: “I feel like an idiot.” He stated, for not turning around when Jamar sang for the blind auditions.

Blake praised Jamie, which made me love Blake even more: “Jamie, I love your vibe.” Jamie had such a great smile with the praise! I was grateful Blake recognized Jamie’s need at that moment.

Cee Lo was in a tough position: “Jamie, I want to give you the confidence. I want you to be reassured that I’m with you and I’m in your corner. . . . Jamar, I know your story. It’s a story of redemption. . . . I admire your perseverance. It’s powerful…” He picked Jamar, and I wanted to cry for Jamie.

Jamie thanked Cee Lo for picking him to be on Cee Lo’s team: “Your coaching did not go in vain, and I’ll take it to heart every single day of my life….(Backstage) Of course I’d like to go on, but, I mean, I feel like there’s a reason for me being here, and maybe that was to let Jamar win . . . (starts crying) I mean, he’s an awesome person.” And so are you, Jamie!

Backstage, Jamar is crying with joy, but I think also with a heavy heart for his friend, Jamie: “I just want to say that I am living proof that there is just no pit too deep that you can’t climb out of. And you don’t have to lay down and die. You can decide to live. You can decide to get better. You can decide to do better. And I just—I got to prove that today.”

Intense. Beautiful. Inspiring. I love The Voice.

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