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The Voice

The Voice 2013 Live Recap: The Live Shows Premiere! (5/6/2013)

After weeks of pre-taped episodes of The Voice 2013, we’re on to the live shows where the voting is in America’s hands. Tonight, the eight contestants on Team Adam Levine and Team Usher will sing for a chance to stay in the competition. And then Tuesday, May 7, the artists on Team Blake Shelton and Team Shakira will perform.

It all comes down to Wednesday’s live results show where several of our favorites could be sent home. Naturally, tonight’s episode is filled with reality competition staples like Phil Collins’s “Against All Odds” and Whitney Houston’s “I Have Nothing.”

Let’s get started:

Team Usher

Before we got down to the individual performances, Usher had to try out some of his eccentric rehearsal techniques. He had his team work out at the boxing ring while singing Sam Sparro’s “Black and Gold.”

Unfortunately, the exercise seemed to be all for the cameras because when it came time for them to perform live, the song fell flat. Can you fast forward something that’s live?

Amber Carrington

In the first individual performance of the night, country artist Amber Carrington opted to sing Rihanna’s emotional ballad, “Stay.”

The purity of Amber’s vocals made her stand out on stage, though the song choice didn’t necessarily give her every opportunity to shine.

Blake Shelton said it would “suck” for an artist to have to follow Amber’s performance. Usher said Amber gave America an “intimate experience” that showed off her voice.

Amber’s coach Adam continued to call her “the biggest surprise in the competition,” saying that she had him “for every second” of her performance. Not too shabby considering the man is a Grammy winner.

Credit: Trae Patton/NBC © NBC Universal, Inc.    

Josiah Hawley

Usher’s token pretty boy, Josiah, was ready to try out his twinkling eyes on Muse’s hit “Starlight.” Yes, we would like you to hold us in your arms, Josiah. Singing-wise, the live show was actually Josiah’s best Voice-performance to date and the first indication that he might be more than just a pretty face. Props to Usher for an excellent song choice for the studly ex-model.

That being said, we’re still not convinced that homie deserves a spot in a competition filled with immense talent.

Shakira agreed with us calling it Josiah’s best performance to date and saying she feels that she’s finally getting to know the “real Josiah behind the facade.”

Noting a few “little things,” Adam said the performance was overall great. And Blake said the world is going to lose a male model over this, offering himself to replace Josiah in the editorial spreads. Sigh, it’s like you’re reading our fan fiction, Blake!

Ush called his contestant a “rock star” and praised his confidence. We’re just wondering if these two use the same dentist because their smiles dazzle.

Sarah Simmons

Telling Sarah that she was “born to sing this song,” Adam assigned ethereal singer Sarah Simmons Sarah McLachlan's “Angel,” with the challenge to not cry before the end of the song. Ms. Simmons opted to sing the tune in honor of her recently departed friend who passed away in a tragic accident.

Dressed like a rock goddess, cape and all, Sarah perfectly displayed her ability to effortlessly transition from gritty growls to pure belts.

And as tears blossomed in her eyes, we were just as weepy at home.

Blake poetically called the performance “so amazing,” telling his team to “do that.” And Shakira simply said “es spectacular.”

Adam commented on the impressive quiet in the room, saying the audience must have been listening so intently that they forgot to make a sound. We certainly agree.

Credit: Trae Patton/NBC © NBC Universal, Inc.    


Usher’s only steal still in the competition decided to go big or go home with Whitney Houston’s “I Have Nothing.” For some reason, Ush decided that waltzing around the rehearsal space would help Cáthia’s voice to “dance” around the stage.

Her gorgeous Spanish accent brought a new flair to the iconic tune, and though she struggled with pitch in some places, she managed to make the important notes really shine. Once again this artist, who we all planned to despise after her Mean Girls impersonation during the battle rounds, surprised us and made us fall in love all over again.

Shakira wasn’t quite as smitten as we were, chastising Usher for picking an overly challenging song for the young contestant. Ush seemed to think that the performance wasn’t necessarily “incredible,” but quickly moonwalked over his words saying that she could end up going all the way. Wait, what?

Caroline Glaser

Going against the other powerhouse artists in the competition, coffeehouse songbird Caroline Glaser was desperate to stand out on the Ed Sheeran tune “The A Team.” And though we could listen to her tracks play all day in Starbucks (which coincidentally sponsors The Voice), the singer fails to really shine when compared to the other stars on Team Adam.

Blake admitted that he felt like having “a special latte” in Caroline’s coffee shop and Usher complimented the singer’s relaxed vibe and excellent control. Adam encouraged his contestant to “keep doing” what she’s been doing. Personally, we’d like to see something new.

Credit: Trae Patton/NBC © NBC Universal, Inc.    


When Vedo first heard that he was singing Phil Collins, he was like, “WHAT?!” which was basically our reaction. It’s upsetting that Usher picked the world’s most cliché competition song for his most talented artist.

Sure, Vedo not knowing anything about Phil Collins was major faux pas, but ultimately made us love him just a little bit more, considering he wasn’t the one who picked the most predictable of all tunes. What’s next, Ush, “Wind Beneath My Wings”? Gag us.

Vedo (baby) managed to pull out a perfectly respectable performance, but Shakira acted like an awkward schoolgirl when asked for her opinion on his performance. “Who am I to say? I’m just an ant in the universe.” Ummm, what? You’re a coach on this show!

Moving along, Adam said the only thing he didn’t like about Vedo was the fact that he wasn’t on his team. Usher seemed overjoyed by his artist’s performance, saying he thinks the R&B singer will definitely go far.

Michelle Chamuel

We’ve spent weeks watching goofy rocker Michelle Chamuel jump around the stage, but for the live shows, Usher wanted her to tone it down a bit singing the emotional ballad, “True Colors.”

In rehearsals, Ush commented that "True Colors" really was the perfect tune for the eccentric singer. He had her sing to herself in a mirror, which immediately reduced us to tears. And the weeping didn’t stop there.

Hearing Michelle’s complete vulnerability on the soft song, we fell in love with her and all of her colors. OMG, Michelle! You’re totally beautiful like a rainbow.

Usher had some sparking tears in his mesmerizing eyes. Swoon.

Shakira loved Michelle’s “authentic” presence on the stage, complimenting how she always “just goes for it.” Adam called this Michelle’s “breakout moment,” saying she should be very “proud of it.”

“We all process what we need to be our greatest selves ... tonight you made a connection to the world that they’ll never forget,” Usher said. Sorry, we’re too busy sobbing to watch the rest of the competition. Well, maybe not too emotional to watch Judith Hill show them how it’s done...

Credit: Trae Patton/NBC © NBC Universal, Inc.    

Judith Hill

Battling vocal nodes, this soul singer was ready to prove herself singing the jazzy “Feelin’ Good.” Adam called Team Shakira’s Sasha Allen Judith’s biggest competition after her breakout moment singing Etta James’s “At Last.”

With the perfect lighting, styling, and hair, Judith took to the stage feelin’ ... well ... good. And that’s about the extent of how we would describe her performance — good. She never really had the chance to blow us out of the water, and her face after the song ended showed that she knew it.

Usher told Judith that she “took us to church,” while Adam said that he was impressed with how Judith was able to convey her personality to the audience.

Despite their kind words, we find Judith to be one of the least personable artists in the competition, especially on Team Adam.

What did you think of tonight’s performances? Tell us below!

05.7.2013 / 07:30 AM EDT by Rachel McRady
Related: The Voice, Adam Levine, Recaps, Usher, The Voice 2013

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