Aguilera criticizes the former Mouseketeer's bluesy take on Jay-Z's "99 Problems"

By Liz Raftery
May 07, 2012 11:05 PM
Credit: Art Streiber/NBC

The Voice is now up to the viewers.

The four finalists on the second season of NBC’s singing competition – Jermaine Paul, Tony Lucca, Chris Mann and Juliet Simms – gave their last performances on Monday night, and the winner will be announced Tuesday, based on audience votes.

All four celebrity coaches also teamed up with their protégés for special duet performances throughout the evening, and the contestants each performed one of their mentor’s hits as a thank you for their guidance throughout the competition.

But the night wasn’t all about camaraderie. Spoilers ahead!

Tensions continued to flare between Christina Aguilera and Team Adam’s Lucca, who offered a bluesy take on Jay-Z’s “99 Problems” for his final performance.

Aguilera offered tepid feedback of her fellow former Mouseketeer’s song choice. (The chorus? “I got 99 problems but a b–– ain’t one.”)

Aguilera told Lucca he “sounded great” before adding: “Your beautiful wife and your daughter and family are here tonight and I just thought, you know, the lyrical connotation was a little derogatory towards women.”

“It’s called a metaphor,” Levine snapped at her, insisting that the line was referring to “life getting at you, things bringing you down.”

“We’re not referring to women,” he added. “We’re referring to everything.”

But Aguilera had the last word. “This is a real man [who] respects women,” she said of her own team member, opera singer Chris Mann, who performed her song “The Voice Within” before closing out his run with Josh Groban’s “You Raise Me Up.”

Team Blake’s Jermaine Paul chose R. Kelly’s “I Believe I Can Fly” for his swan song.

Paul, who gained stage experience as a backup singer for Alicia Keys, gave an impassioned performance that left his mentor, Blake Shelton, “speechless.”

“My heart is in my throat right now,” Shelton said after Paul finished the song. “My job on this show … is to be a coach, but I continue to feel like I learn things from you.”

The last performance of the evening came from Juliet Simms, who was battling “throat and health issues,” according to her coach, Cee Lo Green.

Simms tackled Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Free Bird” to close out the show, after performing Gnarls Barkley’s “Crazy” and Steppenwolf’s “Born to Be Wild” (with Green) earlier in the night.

The winner will be revealed in a two-hour finale Tuesday (9 p.m. ET) on NBC.