I sheepishly confess to getting hooked by yet another reality show: The Voice. I started watching it because I was intrigued by the idea of the blind audition. Each potential contestant came out on stage and sang for the judges as the judges sat with their backs turned. No peeking! If the judges liked what they heard, they could turn around. Turning around was a commitment on the part of the judges that they were willing to take that singer on as part of their team. These singers were initially judged on their voices alone. Imagine that!
I found myself drawn back to the show week after week because it was such a positive show. Unlike so many of the other reality/talent shows, this show seemed built on providing positive feedback and training instead of snarky criticism. True, there was a lot of teasing between the coaches, but it was good-natured and fun.
Another reason I was drawn back again and again was the level of talent. Even in the early rounds of the show several of the contestants, most of whom could never get a nod from the recording industry previously, sounded better than many of the well-known singing artists’ studio produced recordings. And they were singing live!
I think the right singer won. Javier has an amazing voice, and besides that, he seems to be such a good family man – so proud his little girls. I expect the other three finalists will soon have recording contracts of their own. We haven’t heard the last of them.
There are a few things that I learned from The Voice:
1) Our voice, our essence, does indeed stand apart from appearance. While media generally tries to persuade us otherwise, you don’t have to have a pretty face or a skinny body to be a person of value or talent. We all have a voice and we’ve all been given some specific outlet to share our voice with the world.
2) You don’t have to be snarky to be entertaining. Camaraderie goes a long way. Praise and constructive criticism provides much better motivation than tearing a person down. And as for the fun? Well, that’s just fun!
3) Every person has his/her own unique style and voice. While we should never change who we are to fit in with others, sometimes we do need to make accommodations when it comes time to work together. When singing a duet, or working with a partner, we really do need to blend.
4) Sometimes our styles and voices are so different that maybe it’s best that we work toward the same goal – but apart. I have to say that I wasn’t fond of the performances of the four coaches together – Blake Shelton, Christina Aguilera, Cee Lo Green, and Adam Levine. Each one is awesome in his/her own way, but blending country, pop, hip hop, and rock styles and voices into a single performance? Well, it just doesn’t work very well.
Find your voice. Find your outlet. Find your coaches, your encouragers, your partners, and see what amazing things you can accomplish together. Oh, and don’t forget – have fun!