The first of the six knockout matches on the April 3 episode of “The Voice” pitted two of Alicia Keys‘ artists — Chris Blue and Quizz Swanigan — against each other. We asked if you thought Keys made the right choice by going with Blue and you agreed by a margin of 64% to 36%. If you haven’t voted in our poll yet, watch their performances below and then cast your ballot. And be sure to sound off in our comments section too.
For his knockout song, Blue went with “Superstition,” a 1973 No. 1 for singer/songwriter Stevie Wonder. It worked well for him, especially after Keys counseled him to concentrate on conveying the lyrics rather than showboating. Thirteen-year-old Swanigan opted for “Chains” by Nick Jonas, a one-time member of a boy band who released this track when he went solo in 2014. After Keys finally chose to go with Blue, Gwen Stefani stole Swanigan as she was impressed when he had combined song and dance so effortlessly.
When Blue performed at the end of March 14 blind audition episode, Keys was the only coach still in need of an artist. The Knoxville native, 26, sang the blues with his rendition of “Tracks of My Tears,” the 1965 hit for Smokey Robinson and the Miracles. Even though no other coach was contending for this talent, he was a good fit with Keys. When he went into battle against RJ Collins on March 21, they had to go head-to-head on “Adorn.” Singer/songwriter Miguel had a big hit with in 2012 with this chart-topping soul song. Blue dominated the duet while Collins struggled to connect with the lyrics. Stefani left no doubt which artist she preferred, gushing to Blue, “I don’t even know if I was listening to your voice, because I was so mesmerized by your body.” Not surprisingly, Keys picked him.
At just 13, Swanigan is the youngest artist this season, having taken advantage of the rule change this year to lower the age minimum. During his March 2 blind audition, his rendition of the 1960’s Motown tune “Who’s Lovin’ You” was reminiscent of the young Michael Jackson. While his deep, textured voice had both Keys and Stefani turning, it was Keys who won him over in the end. His battle foe Felicia Temple spoke of her personal connection to the 2011 Sia song “Titanium,” which she had used as inspiration when undergoing treatment for cancer. However, she could not overcome the desire by Keys to mentor Swanigan. Blake Shelton liked what he heard from Temple – “You can just hear the warmth and that rounder tone that she has” – and stole her away for his team but she lost her knockout round to Casi Joy later on Monday.
Do you think Keys made the right choice by going with Blue? Watch the two performances and then vote in our poll below. And be sure to sound off in our comments section too.
Chris Blue (“Superstition”)
Quizz Swanigan (“Chains”)