Tuesday, June 18, 2013
Each week on the show, I've watched her master different music genres, grow in confidence, and become a rock star with range. She's the real deal. Clearly, Usher thinks so too. The affection between them is sweet, and I sure hope he takes good care of her once the show is over. He can open big doors for Michelle, the University of Michigan graduate who calls herself an introverted nerd.
Michelle is fierce when she performs. Her voice is clear and strong, and her athletic mannerisms on stage rev the audience every time she sings. Her spark creates the thunderous applause. She has made the show worth watching for me - week after week. I even bought her songs on iTunes. I've never made an iTunes purchase in my life - ever - before this.
Do I think she will win? Like many professional music critics, I think she should, but I fear she won't. The country block of teenaged voters will likely push bland little Danielle Bradberry over the top. She's a cute girl who sings well (although country twangy-whiny), and these shows always seem to bring out the votes for the country singers. That's probably why year after year of American Idol's country winners finally took its toll on that show's ratings. The same could happen to The Voice if Bradberry wins. Everything Blake did kept her safe - they took no chances with her song choices.
Danielle has a good voice that, with training, could make her a masterful presence in country music. While pure, I didn't find her voice unique or particularly strong. Her stage presence was almost nonexistent. She always has a silly teen grin on her face. She should stay in high school and learn how to speak properly ("I have growed" was one of my favorites). Also, although I may sound like a prude, I found her love song duet with Blake Shelton last night uncomfortably creepy. She's 16, and he's a married man already in the tabloids for cheating.
On the other hand, Michelle's duet with Usher was riveting. Watching them perform U2's One reminded me that the song is about unity, a special moment for her and her coach. It was perfect, right down to their synchronized choreography.
If the show has to go Nashville, I'd rather see the Swon Brothers take it. They don't sing all that well - really - but they are so gosh-darned entertaining, I really like them. Endearing is the word I'd use to describe them. The Voice producers gave them the slot of death two weeks in a row, so I doubt they have a chance. I'll smile for them if they win.
I shouldn't watch these reality shows anymore. I'm always angry with the outcome. When those dancers won over Susan Boyle on Britain's Got Talent, I was devastated. At least she got the last word. She's a star now. Has anyone heard from Diversity since?
One final word about The Voice, which is more a reflection on those who vote than the show...How in the world did Judith Hill and Sasha Allen and Amber Carrington get voted off this past month?
You know what I'll be doing tonight. Watching my favorite Michelle - the gal with the black glasses, the one who is never pimped out in sequins or tragically uneven hemlines - hoping that she wins, but expecting she won't. No one can beat those teenaged voters (one of whom bragged on Facebook that she had voted 400 times, which would be called voter fraud in most circumstances). If I'm wrong in my prediction, I'll have a renewed confidence in American voters - and be thrilled.
There will be no contestant singers tonight from what I understand, but plenty of entertainment, including Cher. That will be worth watching. I'll miss Shakira and Usher next season, if I watch.
I know the country music fans will come out in droves with their comments. Keep it "nice," gals. The pro-Danielle/anti-Michelle comments on Facebook have demonstrated how rude people can be when commenting on the Internet.
Photo courtesy of zap2it.com