Another week, another Twin Cities singer shines on NBC’s “The Voice.” Last night, it was Ashley DuBose, a 23-year-old single mom raised on St. Paul’s West Side, who has sung backup with Caroline Smith and rapper Mike Dreams. She has also performed around town a lot over the past year promoting her own impressive neo-soul-tinged album. DuBose earned praise from all four of the celebrity coaches with her version of Rihanna’s “Diamonds” during last night’s auditions, a performance that show promos teased to as a “highlight” of the night.
“If Rihanna was watching, I know she would feel you did it justice,” gushed Cee-Lo, who was actually the last to turn his chair around to show his thumbs-up -- but it only took a minute for him to do so. The other three coaches all hit their turnaround buttons 10 seconds earlier.
Noting that Rihanna songs can be difficult to pull off, Christina Aguilera said, “I was waiting for something to happen, but nothing went wrong.” Adam Levine said her voice “cuts through like a laser through this entire place. … It overtook the room.”
After all four coaches heavily pitched their services to DuBose, but it was Levine who won out with the end, seemingly by flashing his competitive spirit against three-time team winner Blake Shelton. "I personally want to dethrone him,” Levine said, to DuBose’s amusement.
An analyst programmer by day – “She’s smart, too,” the coaches noted – DuBose will enter the next round in a few weeks against one other Twin Cities performer, 19-year-old Hopkins native Holly Henry, who also got all four coach’s approval last week with her version of Coldplay’s “The Scientist.”