Well I am a little late with this news bit, please forgive me. But Christina and CeeLo Green have both stepped down from The Voice for Season 4 to focus on their careers.
So who has been tapped to fill in the chairs? Shakira and Usher apparently.
In a news article from Yahoo!
Rumors have swirled for months that NBC’s overkill decision to air “The Voice” twice yearly would at least temporarily drive away some or all of the show’s regular judges, causing the lineup to be revamped for the spring 2013 season. Apparently such is the downside of hiring judges who, you know, are still relevant hitmakers and have other important things to do with their time, like touring and recording, besides sitting on an NBC soundstage six months out of the year.
Heck when Christina was speaking to Ryan Seacrest, she admitted that she originally assumed that her time on The Voice would be:
kind of like a side project…then it kind of took off, and there goes my free time!
Christina and CeeLo both have high praise for NBCs the Voice saying:
Christina Aguilera: Being a coach on “The Voice’ is a wonderful experience and the relationship amongst us all is like an extended family. [...] I am so proud of being part of the show from the beginning, all the work we’ve done, and proud of what the show stands for as a whole. As I have expressed since day one of the show, that I am a singer and performer first and I am so excited to get back to that love. Since this year NBC and ‘The Voice’ have decided to tape back-to-back seasons, requiring a full-year commitment, it is important for me to take Season 4 off, allowing me to support my music that my fans have been waiting for…by pursuing my first passion of music during the break, I am also able to come back and offer even more to my team on ‘The Voice’ in the future.
CeeLo Green: First, thank you NBC for supporting my decision to take this Season 4 hiatus! It says that I’m seen and respected as a complete artist and not just a cast member. I’m highly enthusiastic about focusing my undivided attention on my additional endeavors and interests like my upcoming solo album, new Goodie Mob album, Las Vegas residency ‘Loberace,’ new memoir, and new NBC comedy…I will return for Season 5 and will be watching Season 4. NBC is home and as far as Usher and Shakira are concerned–‘mi casa su casa.’
Even though there is emphasis that Blake Shelton and Maroon 5’s front man Adam Levine will be part of Season 4, Blake appears to have made it clear that the one year commitment has been wearing down on him (and his career) a bit:
I don’t know how much longer I’m even going to do it. It’s [NBC's] decision [for us to leave], in that they’re the ones choosing to do back-to-back seasons. They really leave us no other option. As far as Christina and Adam and Cee Lo and I, if we want to tour, there’s not a chance of that doing back-to-back seasons. That’s not acceptable to me. At some point, I’ve got to go, ‘You know what, this has been awesome. It’s changed my life, but it’s not my life. I’ve got to get back to what I really do, and that’s country music.
Yahoo! News made an interesting speculation in regards to Blake’s latest statement:
It is expected that any current judges who sit out a “Voice” season will return eventually, after taking some much-needed time to focus on their own careers…however, Blake’s statement almost reads like a final farewell, so we shall see. If he does ever leave, Adam will probably be crushed. But maybe Usher can be his new bromance buddy when and if that happens.
But personally I think Blake may have also wanted to take Season 4 off, but since Christina and Cee Lo beat him to the punch he is (forced) in a way to stick around for at least another season before he is able to take time off from the show. After all when cycling in new judges, ideally, TPTB would like to keep at least half the judges so the audience members and viewers wouldn’t feel like it is a totally different show. And that is understandable.
Here is hoping that after Blake take a season (or even two) off he would come back… because personally I think the best solution would be that Christina and Cee Lo would go ahead and take a break for Season 4… have both come back for Season 5 and let Adam and Blake take their break… so that way we could feel comfortable with the new coaches/judges with both sets of original pieces… then cycle in new coaches/judges for Season 6 for whomever wants to leave… this way the camaderie reasonably stays intact… so here is hoping that NBC does the smart thing and do this:
Season 3: Adam, Blake, CeeLo, Christina
Season 4: Adam, Blake, Shakira, Usher
Season 5: Shakira, Usher, Christina, CeeLo
Season 6: NEW, NEW, OLD, OLD… (two of the newer coaches and two of the original coaches)
And this way each coach/judge could be cycled in an out in one to two year increments (aka anywhere between one through four seasons)… and probably draw a pool of eight to twelve musicians, vocalists, artists. How would TPTBs that be choose their four judges? Either there is a set schedule that the coaches/judges could agree to OR first come first serve? It would be interesting to see and find out how this works for future cycles.
With all that being said: Who would you like to see be a coach/judge on the voice?