The Voice recap: The final four put everything on the line, as the season 15 finale begins
The top four on The Voice took the stage Monday night for part one of the season 15 finals, with a record contract on the line.
Team Blake Shelton's Chris Kroeze and Kirk Jay, Team Jennifer Hudson’s Kennedy Holmes and Team Kelly Clarkson’s Chevel Shepherd all performed three times. Adam Levine has no artists left on his team. Each artist performed a cover song, a duet with his or her coach, and an original song.
Kroeze led off with a cover of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Sweet Home Alabama,” with his coach Blake Shelton explaining the selection as the kind of iconic song people have come to love from the artist. Following the performance, Adam and Kelly noted that Chris doesn’t get enough credit for being a “legit amazing guitar player.” Blake praised him for knowing what he wants to do and how to connect with the audience.
Team Kelly’s Chevel Shepherd showed off her bluesy side on Tanya Tucker’s “It’s a Little Too Late.” Addressing the camera during rehearsals, Kelly declared Shepherd “might be 4'10, but she’s coming for you country music.” Following Chevel’s live performance, Clarkson, called her “the best kind of artist to work with,” because she has fun “learning and challenging” herself.
Kirk Jay debuted an emotional new single, “Defenseless.” Blake was pleased with the song choice, noting it was a straight-forward, simple song with a great message. Jennifer said Kirk made her a country fan. Blake followed with “Welcome to the country music family, you’re the real deal.”
Kennedy Holmes, the youngest contestant in the competition at 14, followed with her original song, “Love Is Free.” Her coach, Jennifer Hudson, described it as an inspiring tune that Kennedy had to make sure she was “owning” it and “believed in” what she was saying. JHud hailed Kennedy as a performer who’s coming in to her own artistry and enjoying herself in the process.
Next, Kirk Jay joined his coach Blake Shelton for a cover of George Strait’s classic, “You Look So Good in Love.”
The next artist-coach duet featured Kennedy Holmes and Jennifer Hudson singing “Home,” by Stephanie Mills.
Team Blake’s Chris Kroeze followed with his original tune, “Human,” which Blake described as a song with a timely message -- we’re all human. He also felt it was a song that could show Chris’ diversity as an artist. Shelton hailed the live performance as “a moment” for Kroeze.
Chevel and Kelly, or “Chavelly,” as they referred to themselves, followed with a duet on The Judds’ “Rockin’ with the Rhythm of the Rain.”
Chris and Blake returned next with their duet, Delbert McClinton’s “Two More Bottles of Wine.”
Team Blake’s Kirk Jay came “full circle,” according to Shelton, tackling Rascal Flatts’ “I Won’t Let Go” for his final performance of the night. Addressing the camera during rehearsals, Shelton declared Kirk “has a real shot at a big career,” adding that he's, “somebody we can hear on country radio tomorrow.” Adam gave kudos to Kirk for tacking a tough song, and having a voice that “stands out.” Blake called the performance “Brilliant.”
Team Kelly’s 16-year-old country singer, Chevel Shepherd returned for her last shot at earning America’s vote, performing an original tune called “Broken Hearts.” Kelly loved the choice -- a traditional country story song, with a contemporary feel. Adam praised Chevel’s understated approach to songs. Clarkson became emotional as she hailed Shepherd as a “magical being,” adding she loved what Chevel represented not just for girls, but all women.
Team Jennifer’s Kennedy Holmes closed out the show with her cover tune, bringing down the house with Demi Lovato’s “Confident,” Jennifer said it “represents everything it takes to get this far.” Hudson called the 14-year-old “a true professional” -- for her dance moves, as well as her voice -- declaring, “I thought Beyoncé was up there.
The winner will be crowned on Tuesday night's two-hour season finale, which begins at 8 p.m. ET on NBC. Rascal Flatts, Panic! at the Disco, Dan + Shay, Dierks Bentley, Halsey, John Legend, Esperanza Spalding, Kelly Rowland, The Doobie Brothers, Marshmello and Bastille, Jennifer Hudson and Kelly Clarkson, and last season's winner of The Voice, Brynn Cartelli, will be the musical guests.
Maroon 5 is Vevo's most-viewed artist worldwide; "Girls Like You" is most-viewed video
Maroon 5 had a lot of eyeballs on them this year.
Vevo has revealed that the band was the most-viewed artist globally with 1.6 billion views worldwide on the platform. They also had Vevo's the most-watched music video with “Girls Like You,” featuring cameos by a slew of female celebrities including Gal Gadot, Camila Cabello, Millie Bobby Brown, Ellen DeGeneres and Jennifer Lopez. The video racked up 1.3 billion views worldwide as of the end of November, 250 million in the U.S. alone.
Also on the most-viewed in the U.S. list were videos for Drake’s “God’s Plan” and “Nice for What,” Ella Mai’s “Boo’d Up,” Post Malone’s “Psycho” and Ariana Grande’s “No Tears Left to Cry.”
Drake was the most-viewed artist in the U.S. with 460 million views, followed by Ella Mai, Migos and Maroon 5.
Here are Vevo's year-end lists:
Top Artists of 2018 (2018 Releases Only)
Maroon 5 – 1.6 billion
Sebastian Yatra – 1.5 billion
Becky G – 1.4 billion
Drake – 1.4 billion
J Balvin – 1.3 billion
Karol G – 1.2 billion
Ariana Grande – 1.0 billion
Anuel AA – 999 million
Reik – 924 million
DJ Snake – 824 million
Drake -- 490 million
Ella Mai -- 337 million
Migos -- 301 million
Maroon 5 -- 299 million
Travis Scott -- 229 million
Tyga -- 226 million
Rich the Kid -- 216 million
Childish Gambino -- 215 million
Post Malone -- 206 million
Ariana Grande -- 198 million
Top Releases of 2018
Maroon 5, “Girls Like You” -- 1.3 billion
Becky G & Natti Natasha, “Sin Pijama” -- 1.1 billion
Drake, “God's Plan” -- 887 million
Reik, “Me Niego” --730 million
Ariana Grande, “no tears left to cry” -- 660 million
Thalía & Natti Natasha, “No Me Acuerdo” -- 580 million
DJ Snake, “Taki Taki” -- 563 million
Sebastian Yatra, “No Hay Nadie Más “ -- 557 million
Karol G, “Mi Cama” -- 463 million
Tyga, “Taste” -- 456 million
Maroon 5, “Girls Like You” -- 250 million
Drake, “God's Plan” -- 246 million
Ella Mai, “Boo'd Up” -- 224 million
Tyga, “Taste” -- 182 million
Childish Gambino, “This Is America” -- 165 million
Post Malone, “Psycho” -- 158 million
Migos, “Walk It Talk It” -- 135 million
Drake, “Nice for What” -- 134 million
Rich The Kid, “Plug Walk” -- 115 million
Ariana Grande, “no tears left to cry” -- 108 million
Songs by Lady Gaga, Troye Sivan, Kendrick Lamar, Jennifer Hudson make the shortlist for Oscar nominations
It's looking more and more likely that Lady Gaga will receive at least one Oscar nomination. "Shallow," her hit duet with Bradley Cooper from A Star Is Born has just made the shortlist of contenders for the Academy Award's Best Original Song trophy.
Originally, 90 songs were deemed eligible for nomination for Best Original Song, but now members of the Academy's Music Branch have narrowed down the list to just 15. One of them is "Shallow," which was co-written by Gaga, Mark Ronson and others.
Other songs that have made the list of 15 songs include Troye Sivan's "Revelation," from the movie Boy Erased; Jennifer Hudson's "I'll Fight," from RBG; Kendrick Lamar and SZA's Black Panther collabo "All the Stars;" and Sade's "The Big Unknown," from Widows.
It's important to note that in all cases, the songwriters are the ones who'll receive the Oscar, should their composition win. If, for example, "I'll Fight" wins, Jennifer Hudson won't get the trophy -- it'll go to Diane Warren, who wrote the song. But if "Shallow" wins, Gaga would go home with the trophy, because she co-wrote it.
In addition to receiving a nod for Best Original Song, it's almost guaranteed that Gaga will be nominated for Best Actress for A Star Is Born, given that she's already up for a Golden Globe, a SAG Award and a number of other acting honors.
The nominations for the 91st Academy Awards will be announced on Tuesday, January 22. The ceremony will air Sunday, February 24 on ABC.
Elementary to end after seventh season
Say so long to Sherlock Holmes. The CBS drama Elementary will end after its upcoming seventh season, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Starring Jonny Lee Miller as the legendary detective and recovering addict and Lucy Liu as his minder, Joan Watson, the New York City-based updated take on the beloved characters has seen its audience dwindle in recent years, despite the show's continued popularity overseas. Elementary is now CBS' lowest-rated drama.
Miller himself seemed to more than hint that the show was nearing its end, posting this note on Instagram last weekend with a photo of him and Liu on set: "7 seasons. 154 episodes. So proud to have been a part of this family. Thank you. #elementary."
Elementary's sixth season wrap in September. The final season is set to air next year.
Hollywood Buzz 12/18
The Kingsman's Taron Egerton, The Witch's Anya Taylor-Joy and Game of Thrones' Nathalie Emmanuel head the voice cast for The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance, a prequel to The Jim Henson Company's 1982 film, The Dark Crystal. Additional voices include Helena Bonham-Carter, Eddie Izzard, Alicia Vikander, Harvey Fierstein, Mark Hamill, Keegan-Michael Key, Simon Pegg and Andy Samberg. The 10-episode fantasy series launches in 2019 on Netflix...
Baby Driver's Ansel Elgort is attached to star in a film adaptation of Daniel Riley's GQ magazine article The Great High School Imposter, according to Deadline. The story centers on an extremely bright 18-year-old Ukrainian kid who shaves five years off his age to be eligible for adoption by a childless Pennsylvania couple, in an effort to stay in the country. However, he's turned in by his fake parents who become annoyed when the high school valedictorian, who dreams of working for NASA, fails to be the domestic servant they had intended him to be. Elgort will next be seen in The Goldfinch, due out October 2019...
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