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'The Voice' recap: Tessanne Chin will win

Tessanne Chin performs on

Tessanne Chin performs on "The Voice" Season Five finale. Credit: NBC / Trae Patton

Well, there won’t be much suspense Tuesday night on “The Voice” Season 5 finale – at least not much generated by the contestants. (There’s always a chance of some sort of Lady Gaga-generated craziness. Or Celine Dion-esque drama. Or both!)

Tessanne Chin should win “The Voice” handily.

She simply outclassed Jacquie Lee and Will Champlin, with the power and control of her voice. The former Jimmy Cliff backing singer has more skill and more training than her competitors and it showed. In order to beat her, Jacquie and Will needed to go for broke and nail a big, emotional performance. They didn’t.

Here’s how the night played out:


Tessanne Chin, “Try”: Her take on the P!nk song is good, but pales in comparison to the original. P!nk feels the song, while Tessanne seems to be trying to use it to show how well she can sing. “Everything you do just draws me in,” says Coach Adam Levine. “What you have is exceedingly rare.”

Will Champlin, “Not Over You”: The arrangement of the Gavin DeGraw song doesn’t do him any favors, with the drums too loud and his voice mixed too low. His nerves get the best of him, with his runs getting away from him. “There isn’t anybody who works harder than Will,” Coach Adam Levine says. “All you ever did was continue to be passionate about music… You have overcome the biggest hurdles in this competition.”

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Jacquie Lee, “Back to Black”: She sounds wobbly at the beginning. The fact that she sings “kept his lips wet,” which Amy Winehouse, um, did not sing in the original, is proof that a 16-year-old shouldn’t be singing this song. Jacquie does keep the line “I love puff,” though, before she slips into shoutiness. “Was that fun?” asks Carson. “Yeah,” she says smiling. Um, that song is about the darkness, perhaps suicidal darkness, that comes with being the other woman in a relationship. Woohoo! I don’t understand the song I’m singing! “You make me smile,” says Coach Christina Aguilera. “There’s something so special inside of you.”

ROUND 1 WINNER: Tessanne


Tessanne Chin and Adam Levine, “Let It Be”: This is a great song, but a terrible choice for a singing competition. The Beatles’ classic is driven by the music and the universality of the melody. It’s meant to be a song everyone can sing and that doesn’t lend itself to really give her a chance to shine, though the reggae breakdown in the middle was fun.

Jacquie Lee and Christina Aguilera, “We Remain”: Aww, this was sweet. The “Hunger Games” ballad is meant to be defiant, but it’s nice to see Jacquie enjoy herself on stage. It’s also nice to see Christina act maternal and generous as a performer. Not the greatest duet, but it was certainly a good time.

Will Champlin and Adam Levine, “Tiny Dancer”: Their take on the Elton John classic was oddly nondescript. And by choosing to sing the same notes on the chorus, it didn’t give the listener a chance to hear how well Will was singing versus how Adam was singing. It was another strange song pick by Adam.



Tessanne Chin, “I Have Nothing”: She pretty much won the show right here. She took on the Whitney Houston classic and owned it, soaring higher than Whitney in spots and holding onto the song’s pain and power. “It’s sacred ground – it’s one of the best vocals ever recorded,” says Coach Adam. “Where is the ceiling for Tessanne? You’re capable of anything… I know, in my heart and mind, that you are the winner of this show.” He’s right.

Will Champlin, “(Everything I Do) I Do It For You”: He did a gorgeous job with the Bryan Adams ballad, ending it by kissing his wife and child, in an extra-sweet moment. “That was a bit more reserved,” says Blake Shelton. “That might have been a good play. That was solid.” This was a warm, well-executed performance with a low level of degree of difficulty. He needed way more of a risk in order to unseat Tessanne. Coach Adam basically tells him that he should consider just making the finals his success.

Jacquie Lee, “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going”: The New Jersey teen is good, but this song is too much for her, as it would be for almost any 16-year-old. She’s off-key in some places, over-emoting in others. The mistakes take away from the incredibly good parts, where she shows what a stunning voice she has. Jacquie could be great someday soon. She isn’t great right now though. “The amount of talent you have in your little body… is unbelievable,” Coach Christina said. “You have what it takes… This is your moment.”

ROUND 3 WINNER: Tessanne


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