While Christina Aguilera likes to rein in big voices and Cee-Lo Green focuses on stage presence on The Voice, Maroon 5’s Adam Levine and newlywed country star Blake Shelton have their own industry wisdom to impart to contestants.
Their top tips? Accentuate the positive and try new things.
“The music industry is a very negative place,” says Shelton team member Jared Blake, a father of six from Arizona who has worked for many years as a singer-songwriter.
“People want to bring up what’s wrong with you and everything you need to fix, but it hasn’t been that way with Blake at all,” he says. “It’s funny because if you read him on Twitter, he’s so sarcastic, you would think he would lean toward the negative. He doesn’t.”
And while the country star has helped him with his lower register, Jared says that some of the best lessons he’s learned have nothing to do with singing.
“I’m watching the way he communicates with his fans,” Jared says. “When he Tweets, you can tell it’s him. It’s not an assistant, that’s him doing it and just having that personal contact with his fans. I’ve learned a lot.”
For another competing dad, Connecticut’s cap-wearing Javier Colon, learning from Levine and company has been a collaborative process.
“Having Adam Blackstone there is awesome because he is the musical director for Maroon 5,” Colon says. “He knows the ins and outs of every song and he knows what’s needed to make them sound good.”
And Colon is eager to learn more, even as an experienced performer himself.
“I’m not the type who thinks just because I’ve sung for a long time that I know everything,” he says. “I know what I am used to doing, but that’s not the only way. Adam [Levine] has some creative advice – he really knows how to really sell a song … He’s very intelligent, very passionate, and he really made me feel that he wanted me on his team.”
The second battle round airs Tuesday (10 p.m. ET) on NBC.