Fans have been waiting a long time for The Voice season 22 to finally start. They got their wish on Monday, September 19, when trainers John Legend, Camila Cabello, Blake Shelton and his wife Gwen Stefani nested in their big red chairs.
The seating arrangement had changed a bit. Instead of the husband and wife sitting next to each other, newcomer, Cabello was between them. Legend was on the other end of Shelton, sitting where Kelly Clarkson and Adam Levine used to live.
Fans have long argued whether Gwen Stefani is really a country artist. Many fans were recently upset when Stefani was allowed to perform on The Grand Ole Opry’s hallowed stage with her husband Blake Shelton, claiming she didn’t deserve it. One poster asked: “Does she even care…? What would that even mean to her.” Another commented, “She’s NOT a country singer.”
Fans have also commented on how Stefani has started dressing more like a country star since marrying Shelton. On July 29, she angered fans on Instagram after posting a video of her strutting her stuff in her white fringed cowboy boots. One viewer commented: “Man you are so desperate and annoying. country music hates you Stop stealing a style that isn’t yours. It’s lame.” Another wrote, “Western Wear has a deep and important American personality and it’s not you!!” Another commented, “Starts dating countryman and thinks she should wear fringe.”
Stefani may have stirred the same pot at the premiere of “The Voice” on Monday night when she tried to use her connection with Shelton to bring country artists onto her team. The first time it happened was when she was trying to win over 4-chair turn contestant Orlando Mendez, aka the Cuban Cowboy.
In her attempt to get the country singer to join Team Gwen, she explained, “I’m basically country now, too. I went to the country.” Mendez chose coach Camila Cabello because of her hometown roots.
The second time Stefani played the country card was when contestant Jay Allen sang Cody Johnson’s “Til You Can’t.” He also sang an original song he wrote for his mother, who died of early onset Alzheimer’s disease.
Stefani’s pitch to Allen read, “Blake, he taught me so much about country music and I got to be on two number one country hits with Blake Shelton. I was so happy to recognize this song” (referring to “‘Til You Can’t”).
Stefani then continued, “It’s kind of a two-for-one because I can just ask him if I have any questions.” She was referring to Shelton, who responded with a cocky “You wish.” This time the pitch was successful and Allen chose Stefani as his coach.
Some fans weren’t too happy with the way Stefani used her relationship with Shelton to try and win over country artists. One fan wrote on Instagram, “C’mon Gwen follow your own people and what kind of comment makes people watch the show when you say I can just ask Blake for help.”
Another Instagram user commented, “I don’t understand people. I mean, if you want to sing country, go with the King of Country WOW.”
Another viewer lamented, “Gwen took it from her own husband.”
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