Best talent tilt mentors lauded
There have been TV singing tilts for many years, but it’s only been in the last decade that they’ve become really popular—and their mentors have emerged as a key viewing and “selling” plus factor in the TV audience’s decision to watch them. Who’s the best of the mentoring lot?
More than a decade ago, the most popular judges on TV were paced by the “American Idol” (AI) jurors, with Simon Cowell coming up with the pithiest and most colorful critiques.
For her part, commentor Paula Abdul was similarly “celebrated” and derided for her cheerfully ditzy, clueless remarks.
In the years that followed, other celebrity jurors did their best and worst to stand out on point of attention-grabbing evaluations, mostly negative, of the unfortunate contestant, who had to pass through the gauntlet of harsh comments.
We bewailed this tendency to focus more on the controversial judges than on promising new talents—which is why we are happy when Cowell and Abdul left AI, and were eventually replaced by the more focused likes of Jennifer Lopez, Keith Urban and Harry Connick Jr.
We prefer them much more, because they don’t call undue attention to themselves, focusing instead on coming up with perceptive “pro” and “con” critiques that help contestants identify their strengths and weaknesses, so that they can firm up their acts in the course of the competition.
But, in our view, the best judges and mentors on the tube this season are the celeb jurors on “The Voice,” Adam Levine, Blake Shelton, Gwen Stefani and Pharrell Williams.
They hit the spot because their evaluations are even more insightful and astute. They’re all veteran singers who’ve learned valuable lessons through years of performing, and they generously share those insights with their chosen mentees.
As a result, the tilt’s hopefuls visibly improve as they perform from week to week—and, by the end of the competition, they’re polished professionals, who are ready for the stellar big time!
Among the most valuable lessons imparted and learned are the importance of choice of songs to interpret, and the new talent’s ability to discern his or her unique performing style.
Attached to this is the need to finally understand why the talent has chosen to be a singer in the first place!
It has more to do than just the fact that the talent has a good or even great singing voice. Many proficient vocalists don’t attain genuine stardom, because they don’t have the artistic drive to express their innermost feelings and essence by way of singing! The mentors on “The Voice” make it a point to push their chosen bet to learn those key lessons and arrive at those insights—which make them the best mentors on TV.
Some of them will leave the show this new season, so we hope that their replacements will be similarly astute and insightful!
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