The Voice Finale: Up Close with the Final Four
With several charting iTunes hits, thousands of fans and a just-blooming career, all four contestants are already winners.
However, on Tuesday night, one out of the still-standing four contestants will be deemed the official winner of Season 8 of The Voice.
Before then, the four finalists – Barrett Baber, Emily Ann Roberts, Jordan Smith and Jeffrey Austin – will take the stage to perform duets with each of their talented coaches, as well as sing some tunes that were carefully decided upon.
Barrett Baber – Team Blake
The Arkansas native ventured to Los Angeles to pursue his dream career in country music and though he hasn’t been back home since to “see what the environment will be like” now since joining the show, he already has some huge fans – his wife and two children.
“It’s been great and that’s the beautiful thing about this moment is they’re going to see me performing like crazy and doing everything to win the show,” says Baber about his family. “But at the end of the day, no matter what happens, I’m in a really comfortable place with how this works out and it has a lot to do with my wife and kids because I wouldn’t want any of this if I didn’t have them.”
Though his last Monday’s performance went “out of my lane” when he sang “Ghost” by Ella Henderson – a song that was a little bit more pop-country than he usually prefers – Baber admits that he’s adamant to “stay in my lane” with this week’s song choices.
“I was really adamant that I wanted to stay in my lane and show the people of America one final time who I am and the kind of world that I want to live in and the kind of music that I want to make when I leave here,” says Baber.
Emily Ann Roberts – Team Blake
This peppy adorable blonde may only be 17 years old, but she’s sure to be a country music star one day – if not already! While she’s lucky to have her family on the road with her, she’s a little nervous to get back to a more normal routine.
“I still have three more semesters of high school,” says Roberts, getting very “excited to get back to Nashville.” “[Jumping back into school will] probably be really weird because this has been my life for so long and I haven’t had just the normal high school routine this whole year, but I don’t think that I’ll ever have a normal high school routine again.”
Last week, Roberts rocked the stage in her crystalized cowboy boots while jamming to Dolly Parton’s “9 to 5,” but this week she’s taking the “go big or go home” approach.
“I’m doing something a little bit different, something a little out of my comfort zone but I’m excited about it. I think everyone’s in that same boat where we’re just trying to lay everything we have out there.”
“Six months ago, I never would’ve imagined I would be charting at all on iTunes and now to see myself at the top of it every time I open the app and see my name there, it’s incredible. It’s because of all the love and support from everyone,” says Smith. “It’s so incredible to see that and feel that personal success.”
But when Smith isn’t on the stage singing with the Maroon 5 front man, he’s getting down to duets with his girlfriend, Kristen, who happens to be a singer, too!
“She has a beautiful voice and we love to sing together,” says Smith of his girlfriend. “We actually met because we both sing in church and are involved in our churches and that’s how we were connected, so in a way I suppose that was part of it but we actually first fell in love with each other just because of how we were and realized those little things [we had in common].
“She has been here since the beginning and she’s always expected something like this for me and wanted it for me, so it’s really cool to hear her talk about that. I can remember a conversation she and I had three years ago when I turned up the radio as we were driving and I said I love this song, I would love to sing this on The Voice and be on the show and so for her to see how far I’ve come and how hard I worked through college to get through classes and see me here now, I’m sure it’s incredible for her.”
Jeffrey Austin – Team Gwen
Austin, a publicist in New York City, came to Los Angeles to pursue his lifelong dream because he “can’t see myself doing anything else besides performing and singing.” Though he was an instant save performance last week, he says, “making the finale was winning for me and that everything else is going to be just a bonus.”
“At first, I was very terrified because I got called for the instant save, and then when we were all done and waiting for the Twitter results to come in I seriously did not know what was going to happen,” says Austin. “I probably have the least amount of followers of anyone on the show and I’m going against some of the people with probably the most, so I was a little shocked, but so relieved.”
While he “felt pretty good” after performing Cher’s “Believe,” it turns out that Cher, herself, really does believe in him, too!
“I got a Tweet from Cher after I sang her song on the show,” Austin happily says. “It was a quintessential Cher Tweet full of emojis and capital letters and it was perfect.”
The Season 8 winner of The Voice will be announced Tuesday during a two-hour live finale at 8 p.m. ET/PT on NBC.