NBC’s ‘The Voice’ returns with great singers and lots of laughs from the superstar coaches

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The Voice” has returned to the NBC lineup featuring a new crop of great singers ready to knock your socks off with great performances. And the ultra-likable Carson Daly is back as host for Season 14 of the Emmy-winning talent competition.

Also, this season there will be more laughs thanks to the continued verbal sparring from coaches Alicia Keys and the boys — Adam Levin and Blake Shelton (both anointed Sexiest Man by People magazine, as they will continue to tell you). And the addition of sassy spitfire Kelly Clarkson will certainly boost the laughter level.

Clarkson kept an audience of critics laughing during the interview session for The Voice at the Television Critics Association’s January press tour. “Y’all are as quiet as hell,” Clarkson cracked to a roomful of journalists when there was a lull in the questioning.

…the addition of sassy spitfire Kelly Clarkson will certainly boost the laughter level

The NBC panel presented Paul Telegdy, President, Alternative and Reality Group, NBC Entertainment; Audrey Morrissey, executive producer of The Voice; Chris Blue, Season 12 winner (mentored by Alicia Keys); and the enthusiastic new Voice coach Kelly Clarkson.

A music industry superstar and the first American Idol winner, Clarkson noted that she has turned down numerous offers to join other shows, insisting The Voice was the best fit for her because it focused on raw talent. She said, “I love this show, and I’ve been trying to be a part of it.” But she hadn’t had the chance to join The Voice team because of her difficult pregnancies.

Clarkson explained, “I was knocked up for, like, three years. I couldn’t work because my pregnancies are horrible. I literally have been trying to work with these people since (the beginning). I’ve been a fan since then.” She added that she’s “super stoked that it finally worked out. It was great timing for me, because it’s like ‘mommy off-time’ now.”

She loves that the initial Voice auditions are done behind a screen so that only the quality of a person’s voice, not “aesthetics,” influence the selection of contestants. She said, “It literally does come back to those blinds (blind auditions) that really separates everything. It means something to me, because I think I represent those people in this industry. I don’t fit the pop star image that maybe people expect. But I am a pop star, and this is the image that I exude. That’s why this show really does complement my desires for this industry.”

For Clarkson, her desire was to be a coach not a judge. “I’ve been asked to be a judge on things, and I don’t want to be a judge. I get judged all the time. I love that the people are chosen to be on this show because they’re talented and they deserve it. I think that’s why it’s so successful.”

Clarkson said she’s known her fellow coaches Adam Levine, Alicia Keyes and Blake Shelton for a long time, but when asked if they’ve been helpful as she settled into her red chair, she snapped, “Hell no, they’re a competitive bunch. They’re not helping me at all.”

What’s the best advice and career guidance that Chris Blue received from his coach Alicia Keyes during Season 12 on The Voice? Blue referred to Keyes as an incredible life coach who told him to, “Be present. She said, ‘The only thing that matters in life is where you are right now.’ We are human beings, right? So be in the moment. Don’t try to do anything…‘Be it,’ because you’re human beings, not human doings. That’s something that I’ll keep with me forever. That’s the best advice I’ve gotten.”

For Season 14 the four-time Emmy Award-winning series will continue its innovative format featuring five stages of competition: the first begins with the blind auditions, then the battle rounds, knockouts, playoffs and, finally, the live performance shows.

Tune in.

“The Voice” airs Mondays and Tuesdays at 8pm on NBC.

Margie Barron is a member of the Television Critics Association and has written for a variety of top publications for more than 35 years, and was proud to be half of the husband and wife writing team of Margie and Frank Barron.


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