Handicapping The Voice Final Four

The finals are set for the inaugural season of NBC’s The Voice and really, there are no surprises; I guess Team Cee-Lo’s representative Vicci Martinez barely beating out Nakia was the only mild surprise, and yeah, I was hoping Frenchie Davis could pull out the victory over Beverly McClellan, but McClellan was too strong and she deserves to be in the finals.  
That said, let’s take a look at the finalists:
Team Blake-Dia Frampton
 Okay, yes, Dia has been able to score the highest sales figures on iTunes with each passing week (downloads count as votes on The Voice, something another singing competition show should consider), she has the youth factor AND guess what, she was once part of a major-label act, Meg and Dia.  OMG, I’ve heard of them, but I don’t think I ever heard their music; plus Frampton has several YouTube performance videos out there, so her momentum is very good for the win.  I’m not sure she has the best voice in the competition, but she has a very eclectic style; she’s not your typical pop singer…always a win in my book. 
Team Adam-Javier Colon
I admit when I first heard Colon’s rendition of “Time After Time” in the blind audition rounds, it brought tears to my eyes, really.  His soulfulness made Cyndi Lauper’s 1984 hit seem so fresh and so moving.  If Frampton doesn’t pull off the upset, Colon is the winner.  He had a record contract at one time, he released two albums with no success on Capitol and he was also a member/vocalist for The Derek Trucks Band.  So he has the experience in the grind of writing, producing, touring, and promoting music for a living.  In my opinion, he has the best shot at becoming a commercial success.  Who knows.
Team Cee-Lo-Vicci Martinez
Seattle’s Vicci Martinez is my dark horse in the finals.  However, I don’t think she has the best voice, she has the performance ability and the personality.  Oh, and she’s one of two out contestants in the finals, check!  I wasn’t sure she would make it past the blind auditions; if you recall, even the tv audience didn’t get to see Martinez until the coaches’ chairs started swinging around.  She took on “Rolling in the Deep” with much fearlessness and it was okay; I just wasn’t sure, but now, she has a shot.  Martinez has released several independent albums and she has opened up for major artists like Annie Lennox, Avril Lavigne, Jonny Lang, and, Christoper Cross?!?  Feisty!
Team Christina-Beverly McClellan
(Here looking like Linda Perry in her 4-Non Blondes days) 
Beverly McClellan can also win, but is she commercial enough?  She has so much raw talent and her voice, it’s bluesy, it’s rock n roll, it’s ballsy!  I’m sure at this point, McClellan has the “fan favorite” moniker taken and quite appropriately.  Being the other out competitor hasn’t stopped her and she has nothing to prove.  She’s done it!  McClellan has also gone the route of independence in getting her music out there.  Can she pull off the upset?  Maybe.
So there you have four very able artists ready to take over the world, but which one will?  Final live performances next Tues. night and the winner will be announced live next Wed.  Again, the winner of The Voice will receive $100,000 and a recording contract with Universal Republic.  WATCH IT!

 
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The Voice Rocks And Look Who’s There!

Where do I begin?  Today is day number four for possible severe weather where I live; yesterday, a tornado rushed through just north of my hometown, and then when I returned home from work around 9:30 last night, surrounding areas were under the gun yet again.  To make a long story short, my NBC affiliate had to deliver this important weather information, 30 minutes into the premiere of The Voice, thus taking up the remaining programming time.  So I saw the first few, but just after the weather coverage broke in, a familiar face graced the stage: FRENCHIE DAVIS!!!!  (I watched all of the premiere online)  I thought I saw her in a long shot going into a rehearsal space, but I was like “nah, that’s not Frenchie”, it was!!!  I could not believe it when I found her performance clip earlier today.  We all know what became of Frenchie; she was disqualified from season 2 of American Idol after an internet porn scandal popped up, but then she went on to star in RENT on Broadway, so she hasn’t suffered, but she is now in the position to really make something happen on The Voice.  
Now, onto this bald-headed beauty.  Beverly McClellan has been making music and albums for years now; and yes, she’s a big fixture in the LGBT community.  Side note, one other out lesbian, Vicci Martinez, also made the cut.  That’s what’s wrong with Idol, not enough lebanese!  (Props to last night’s GLEE!)–McClellan is high-energy to the nth degree, and I predict she will do well; and this may sound a little morbid, but when I was watching McClellan’s performance of “Piece of My Heart”, I flashed back to the 2005 Grammys when Melissa Etheridge, bald from chemotherapy, rocked the same song in a tribute to Janis Joplin.  Eerie, but that’s where my mind went.  Now how is Xtina doing so far on the show?  Great; she seemed to be the first one turning around everytime and she was extremely catty with Adam Levine, who I thought would never get a team member.  One other note, when Blake Shelton finally turned around to see Beverly, I got the sense he was a little scared; he said something like “…I don’t want you that mad at me…”  I’m still on the fence about how I feel about Shelton, the guy I saw at P.F. Chang’s in Nashville.  He’s tall.