Wednesday, December 18, 2019


Season 17 of the American edition of “The Voice” played out this Monday and Tuesday on NBC, and it showcased an event that has not occurred in the preceding six seasons. For this finale, each of the four coaches managed to get a single representative from their respective teams for the big showdown, which was also padded with guest performances aplenty. The Top 4 even did several duets with their singing idols after the competition proper on Tuesday. And in the final reckoning, the finalist who only got one chair turning for him defied all odds to win the evening.

As USA Today tells us, the grand champion of “The Voice” US season 17 would be country singer Jake Hoot. His would be an incredible journey since the reality singing competition’s latest outing began back in September. On his blind audition, his performance of “When It Rains It Pours” got only his eventual coach Kelly Clarkson to turn for him, though Blake Shelton also expressed interest afterwards (he believed Clarkson would Block if Hoot chose him). And in the contest proper, he was the only one whose singing style was country. Still, his uniqueness helped him gather a solid following.

When believers began shouting his last name drawn out (“Hoooot!”) after his weekly performances on “The Voice,” the Hooters fandom was born. Hoot, a single-parent dad from Tennessee, would ultimately express gratitude for his coach, saying in the finale that Clarkson not only helped his artistic growth, but also made him a better parent for his daughter. The admiration was mutual too, as Kelly was impressed by how he turned his weak start in the competition into a solid foundation to win it all. And considering the other three coaches – Shelton, Gwen Stefani and John Legend – each had their own finalist that was very important.

The final four contest of “The Voice “ season 17, happening December 16 and 17, saw each bet perform a solo song, a Christmas-themed duet with their coaches, and an original composition. Jake Hoot would choose country group Lonestar’s “Amazed” for the first and Sarah MacLachlan’s “Wintersong” in duet with Kelly Clarkson, before singing “Better Off Without You” for his original. The final vote tallies would put him on first to win, with Blake Shelton’s contestant Ricky Duran coming second, Katie Kadan of Team John Legend third, and finally Rose Short brings up fourth place for her coach Gwen Stefani.

It is just as well. Stefani will be exiting “The Voice” after this season, with Nick Jonas taking her place in time for the 18th season. It will premiere in spring of 2020 on NBC.

Image courtesy of Parade


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