Blake Shelton Gets Crash Course on Usher and Shakira From Miranda Lambert
Season four of "The Voice" is off to a great start and the camaraderie between the coaching panel -- Blake Shelton, Adam Levine and new additions Usher and Shakira -- has never been better. Putting any conflict rumors to rest, the mentors fielded questions from reporters at NBC's Summer Press Day in Pasadena, Calif. on Monday (April 22), but spent most of the time exchanging friendly and funny barbs.
"I was a little bit nervous [about adding new coaches] because I knew how well the show was doing and it was beating the odds," says Blake. "It's a music talent show in a world where there's a lot of those. We knew we had something that worked and I had never met either one of these two [Usher and Shakira] before. The one thing that you can't fake is chemistry. I'll be damned if it's not as strong as it's ever been with the four of us. I'm lovin' it. I'm proud of that. Whether it was NBC or [executive producer] Mark [Burnett], whoever picked these two knew they weren't dealing with artists with egos, they were dealing with really good people and that's what makes it work."
In an effort to educate her hubby on his new coworkers, Blake's wife, and fellow country superstar, Miranda Lambert gave him a history lesson on Usher and Shakira's impressive careers.
"I can tell you a true story right now," he started to say.
"These tend to be long," joked pal Adam. "There goes Grandpa Shelton telling his stories."
"Last week my wife was with me here in Los Angeles," Blake continued. "Every now and then I get to have her here with me on her days off. We spent probably three hours one night, Miranda was educating me on Shakira and Usher and showing me videos. She's such a fan. She was like, 'You don't appreciate how ...' I was like, 'Oh my gosh, they're awesome, babe. I swear to God, they're awesome. I know they are.' She's like, 'No, look at this video and then tell me!' I swear I saw all of their videos, I listened to all their hits and that's been the last week of my life. She sold me on them."
One sore point among the coaches is the steals during the battle rounds, although, as it was pointed out, contestants who are stolen by another coach may still be sacrificed in favor of a singer they've been working with since the beginning of the season.
"That makes the decision even tougher because you do feel loyalty to the ones that picked you to begin with after you picked them," says Blake. "There is a trust and a bond there. If you're really doing your job as a coach, you have to make the decision based on talent and not a relationship. That's tough. The lines get blurred and it's a gray area sometimes. Sometimes that makes a difference in a winner and a loser in those type of situations."
Catch "The Voice" Mondays and Tuesdays at 8:00 PM ET on NBC.