'The Voice': Blake Shelton Says Wendy Moten's 4-Chair Turn Is a 'Top 3 Blind Audition of All Time'
By Meredith B. Kile
Blake Shelton has been a coach on The Voice for each of the show's 21 seasons. So when he says someone has performed a "Top 3 Blind Audition of All Time," you know he means it!
Wendy Moten, a 55-year-old performer from Nashville, Tennessee, closed out the first night of auditions on Monday with a powerful rendition of The Beatles' "We Can Work It Out," and left the coaches speechless as they squared off to land her on their teams. (Especially John Legend, who got blocked by Blake!)
A soulful singer with impressive range, Wendy had a charting hit in the 90s with "Come In Out of the Rain," before she began singing backup and duets with Julio Iglesias, Vince Gill, Michael McDonald, John Oates and more.
"What a privilege for them to have shared the stage with you!" Ariana Grande praised after Wendy's performance. "You are spectacular and I need you to be in the foreground. It's time."
"Your mastery of your instrument is beyond," John agreed. "You have so much light in your voice... You really are phenomenal and we are lucky to have you."
Kelly Clarkson was the last to turn her chair for Wendy, but said she simply got caught up in the performance. "You are what this show is all about," she told the performer. "A voice that is so powerful, so transcendent, that you kind of move people to another level."
However, it was Blake who threw out perhaps the biggest compliment of them all, saying, "That is top three Blind Audition for The Voice, all time."
"You found a note and delivered it with power and impact. It was shocking," he said, joking, "[It blew] the color out of my hair!"
While Kelly and Ariana continued to make their own pitches, Wendy shocked the panel and the audience by having her mind made up for Team Blake!
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'The Voice' Season 21: Kelly Clarkson and Jason Aldean on Their 'Eclectic' Team (Exclusive)
ET spoke with the coaches during their season 21 press conference ahead of Monday's premiere, where John, Kelly and Blake placed the target squarely on Ariana's back as the first-time coach this season -- especially because so many of the show's young singers idolize the two-time GRAMMY winner's vocal talent and chart success.
"Of course she's a threat!" John said with a laugh. "She is hugely talented, hugely successful and has legions and legions of fans that know how to use the internet and vote."
"There's no disadvantage when you're Ariana Grande," Kelly agreed. "She can't say it. I will."
"It's embarrassing to follow her [onto the Voice stage]," Blake joked of the audience's enthusiasm for the "7 Rings" singer. "It exposes my lack of celebrity."
As a longtime "huge fan of The Voice," Ariana was humble about her possible advantages, but said she couldn't wait for fans to see how her season 21 team comes together.
"I have watched many seasons and I love watching the show," she said. "It always has the best energy. It's such wholesome, inspiring television, and I love seeing the different voices and watching so many people start careers for themselves. It's a beautiful, amazing thing."
The Voiceairs Mondays and Tuesdays at 8 p.m. PT/ET on NBC. See more from season 21 in the video below!