BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. — The mentors on The Voice may be superstars, but the consensus is it’s not on them that the singing competition has failed to find big stars such as themselves.
Adam Levine, Christina Aguilera, CeeLo Green, and the show’s host and producer Carson Daly addressed journalists at the Television Critics Association summer press tour. Blake Shelton did not attend because he’s on tour.
Levine said finding a star “would be really nice” but it’s not the goal.
“A lot of things have to happen in order for that to take place,” he said. “I think the goal of the show is to do what we can do for these amazing singers while they’re on the show ... I think that we all know that the lightning in a bottle you have to capture in order to be successful in this business is extraordinarily difficult. I’m not sure that that is the overall mission statement of the show.”
American Idol producers and judges weren’t shy about wanting to crank out insta-stars like Kelly Clarkson and Carrie Underwood. Its 11th season winner Phillip Phillips has had huge radio success with songs like ‘Home” and “Gone, Gone, Gone.” Even some finalists who haven’t made a real mark in the music world like Kellie Pickler and Katharine McPhee still have name recognition and have found success in other areas. (Pickler, who is a country singer, won the most recent season of Dancing with the Stars. McPhee had a starring role on NBC’s Smash.)
It should be noted American Idol has had its flops as well. Ninth season winner Lee DeWyze’s album “Live it Up” was a major disappointment. He sold just 151,000 copies. By contrast, Javier Colon, who won season one of The Voice, sold 46,000 copies of his first post- Voice album called “Come Through for You” as of last month.
Aguilera says it’s unrealistic to expect someone to turn into an overnight sensation.
“It’s not like everything needs to be like boom, boom, boom, then record deal, then No. 1 success. It doesn’t happen like that. It didn’t happen that way for me either. Like, for instance...my experience with The Mickey Mouse Club, the alumni from that show, you know, you have huge names Britney [Spears], Justin [Timberlake], Ryan Gosling, you know, all these names come from that show. But, you know, right after the show, did we rocket to success right after it? No. It takes time.”
Of season four winner, Danielle Bradbery, The Voice host and producer Carson Daly argued that she has time on her side.
“She has eight years to figure it out, her voice, an album, whatever it might be. And in eight years she’ll be the same age as Taylor Swift is right now. She’s got time,” he said.
Bradbery’s new single “The Heart of Dixie” debuted at No. 58 on the Billboard Hot 100 and No. 16 on the country charts.
When asked about the show’s ratings decline when its star judges are featured less, the panel seemed a bit irked.
To their credit, The Voice is a successful TV show. It’s nominated in the Outstanding Reality Program Emmy Award category for a second year in a row.
The Voice returns for its fifth season on Sept. 23.