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'The Voice' recap: Jake Worthington will win Season 6
Sometimes, nice guys do finish first.
We’ll see if that happens Tuesday night on “The Voice” Season 6 finale, because, frankly, what sets young Jake Worthington apart from the rest is his incredible likability.
The 18-year-old from LaPorte, Texas, had a good night musically on the show’s final performance night. But it was his sweet, aw-shucks demeanor and dry sense of humor that should put him over the top. You can AutoTune a singer to give them a good voice. AutoTune can’t give you a personality.
“That makes me emotional,” his coach Blake Shelton told Worthington, as he rehearsed a cover of Richard Marx’s “Right Here Waiting.” “And I’m the coldest person I know.”
Speaking of cold, here’s another hard truth. The best singer of the night isn’t going to win. Oh sure, Josh Kaufman showed incredible range and power in his passionate performances. But being the best singer doesn’t always translate to sales or votes. Ask Sisaundra Lewis.
No, Worthington’s main competition is Christina Grimmie, a pop singer who had an uneven night, but seems like a more conventional winner for “The Voice.” The coaches can applaud her for her “unconventional” choice of Elvis Presley’s “Can’t Help Falling in Love,” but her approach was anything but.
Voting continues until noon today.
Here’s how the finalists stacked up:
ROUND ONE: Audience pick
(The audience picked from all the songs the artists performed previously this season.)
Christina Grimmie, “Wrecking Ball”: She started out at the center of an electric spider web for some reason and then seemed to nervously miss some notes at the beginning of the Miley Cyrus song. She was actually way better in the audition because she didn’t take as many liberties with the melody and her ad-libs were especially, um, ah-ooh-wah-eeee! And, “I said hey!” “Your upper register is just insane,” Shakira said. “You knocked this song out of the park during the blinds and you did no different this time.” Her coach Adam Levine said she improved. “I think you did it better today,” he said. “I feel like I was transported to something that wasn’t even the show . . . I’m just bursting with pride.”
Jake Worthington, “Don’t Close Your Eyes”: His level of difficulty is much lower than his competitors on the Keith Whitley song, but Worthington nails this performance, like he wrote the song himself. “You’re just too cute,” Shakira said. “Now, you’ve gained credibility . . . Your voice is just perfect on that song. It was tender. It was real. And you made me pay attention to the lyrics.”
Josh Kaufman, “Signed, Sealed and Delivered, I’m Yours”: He transformed his song the most, showing off his singing skills as well as his soulful delivery on the Stevie Wonder song. “It’s unbelievable to think that you nearly went home when you sang this song,” Shakira said, referring to how his former coach Levine picked Delvin Choice over Kaufman to continue on his team after his performance of the song originally. “You have been a jewel in this competition.” Shelton enjoyed his ad-libs, saying, “Not only did you sing the crap out of that, you ad-libbed the crap out of that.” Kaufman’s new coach, Usher declared him a winner, “He is the new voice of ‘The Voice’.”
ROUND ONE WINNER: Josh
ROUND TWO: Coaches’ duets
Josh Kaufman and Usher, “Every Breath You Take”: OK, the only thing I did not like about this was Josh’s white dress shirt adorned with bits of paisley tablecloth. Other than that, they somehow transformed The Police song about stalking into something oddly bromantic and friendly.
Christina Grimmie & Adam Levine, “Somebody That I Used to Know”: Her default cutesiness doesn’t quite fit this song and that creates some problems. It’s so close to good that her quirks on it become even more annoying.
Jake Worthington & Blake Shelton, “A Country Boy Can Survive”: The Hank Williams Jr. classic is red meat for the fan base. It was good, but it was also interesting that Shelton had to take the big ending note.
ROUND TWO WINNER: Josh & Usher
ROUND THREE: New performance
Jake Worthington, “Right Here Waiting”: Who knew countrified Richard Marx could sound this good? Worthington did well, but the arrangement worked against him. His voice can’t just get quite low enough and then he seemed to run into a brick wall at the bridge. “You really are making the songs new,” Shakira said. Shelton pinpointed the reason his fans would vote for Worthington. “I don’t think there’s ever been a more honest, sincere narrator or messenger of a lyric than you,” he said. “When you sing something, people are engaged.”
Christina Grimmie, “Can’t Help Falling in Love”: Her take on the Elvis Presley classic was too slow and dramatic at the start and too showy at the end. It takes the simplicity of the original and throws it out the window. “To go after a song like that is really courageous,” Usher said. Shakira agreed, saying “That was flawless . . . You push the envelope. And you put your stamp on everything you do.” Her coach Levine declared her the winner. “This is yours,” he said. “I think you’re going to win this show.”
Josh Kaufman, “Set Fire to the Rain”: While taking on an Adele song seemed like a bad move, his version was so strong that it worked out. The epic ending showed that he could be a current star. He is as distinctive as Sam Smith. Unfortunately, that will probably not win him a popularity contest. “This is the representation of what ‘The Voice’ is,” Usher said. “You are the winner of this competition.”
ROUND THREE WINNER: Josh
WHO SHOULD WIN ‘THE VOICE’: Josh
WHO WILL WIN: Jake
ACTUALLY WON: Josh