The tension mounted Tuesday night as NBC’s “The Voice” was winding down.The only way Minneapolis’ own Jesse Larson could make it to the finals was if enough viewers voted to save him. In a faceoff with two other contestants, Larson outpolled them in a five-minute vote on Twitter to snare the final slot in the finale next Monday and Tuesday.
Larson becomes the first “Voice” finalist ever who was coveted by only one judge (in this case, Adam Levine) when he auditioned. Larson becomes the second Minnesotan (after Nicholas David) to land in the finals.
On TV Tuesday night, Levine saluted Larson’s evolution.
“Jesse Larson is a guitar player who decided to try singing. His wife badgered him to do it. He gave it a shot. It’s staggering to me that people can spend their whole life trying to be a singer. He went from ‘give it a shot’ to the first one-chair turn-around to make the finale.”
To win the last-minute save round, Larson strapped on his guitar and crooned country star Chris Stapleton’s “Tennessee Whiskey,” adding a slight churchy touch to a song comparing a woman to booze.
This season on “The Voice,” Larson also sang “Human” by Rag n Bone Man, “Sir Duke” by Stevie Wonder and “Jungle Love” by the Time, among other tunes.
Larson has spent the last few years playing guitar in the funk band MPLS. Prince also hired him in 2015 as a guitarist in Judith Hill’s touring band. Hill’s career took off after she competed on “The Voice.”
Stay tuned to see what happens with Larson.