Gwen Stefani, coach on season 12 "The Voice"

‘The Voice’ Top 12 Live Playoffs: Team Gwen Should Not Lose Anyone! (VIDEO)

“The Voice” broke tradition for Shania Twain. During the Top 12 live performance show, a fifth red chair was added to seat her between Gwen Stefani and Alicia Keys. Not only did Shania advise all the artists alongside their coaches, she was there to see the results.

That’s some deal NBC struck with Twain, who is releasing her first collection of new songs in fifteen years. No matter how it got cooked up, it was a win for fans of “The Voice”. She added energy and insight that resonated with the artists. As we’ve seen in the past with live playoff advisers, they are given a whole lot of time on camera, with the coaches giving them more of the spotlight. Sometimes that ends in an adviser becoming a coach, like it did with Miley Cyrus. Is that in the cards for season 13?

But, we digress. Here’s thinking that the entire roster of Team Gwen should be protected at all costs. Each provided great moments on the performance show, and as Blake Shelton said, one of his discarded artists is better off in the care of Gwen Stefani. Was that just love talking? Whatever it was, Brennley Brown’s rendition of ” Long, Long Time” made you sit up straight and say, “Whoa”.  Stefani admitted she’s been hitting up country music for hours on end trying to find the perfect song for her singers. She did right by all three, but even more so for Brennley.

Then there’s Troy Ramey, who has become more comfortable emoting on that big stage. He was told by both Twain and Stefani to let it all go, and do as he said he planned. “Free Fallin” means something to him, representing his ability to just allow the elimination process on “The Voice” to run its course, while he does his best. He can’t comprehend it’s been enough, and feels like he’s been lifted by wind currents. His intention was to give us the impression that he was free-falling on stage and damn if he didn’t do just that.

Finally, there’s Hunter Plake, the definition of the unicorn in this competition. He seems packaged and ready to blow away indy music fans at festivals around the country, and yet “The Voice” is the first large audience he ever faced. Ever. Talk about someone who allows himself to go to a place while performing that dares us to enter. He sang “Someone I Used to Know” and demanded that we pay attention. His performances are nuanced and emotional, and his voice can travel north or south seamlessly. He is the unicorn in season 12 and deserves to more along.

“The Voice” Top 12 results show airs tonight, Tuesday April 25 at 8 p.m. ET/PT    Image/video credit: NBCUniversal, used with permission

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