And the winner of ‘The Voice’ season 22 is…

Coach Blake Shelton wins 'The Voice' for the 9th time with season 22 country singer Bryce Leatherwood.  (Photo: Trae Patton/NBC)

Coach Blake Shelton wins “The Voice” for the 9th time with season 22 country singer Bryce Leatherwood. (Photo: Trae Patton/NBC)

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Blake Shelton, The voiceThe most successful and popular coach, he triumphed by a ninth time in Tuesday’s grand finale — after all, Blake had a 60 percent chance of winning, with three singers in the final five. In fact, I predicted that Team Blake’s “pure country” contestant, a 22-year-old Georgia crooner with the extremely Opry-worthy name Bryce Leatherwood, would win the Season 22 title. ‘entire standings from fifth to first place, but I’ll get to those results in a bit.)

What done What made Tuesday’s finale surprising and historic, however, was the fact that Bryce was the first Instant Save contestant to win The voice. And Bryce has actually been saved more than once this season: first during the Battle Rounds, by his trainer, and then during the Instant Save show’s first 16 results sing-off, as a viewer-voted wild card.

However, Bryce climaxed at just the right time this week, with his jaw-dropping, personality-packed cover of Elvis Presley’s “TROUBLE” on Monday, and at the end of that night of top-five performances, his wife and colleague Blake’s coach, Gwen Stefani, was predicting that Bryce would win. And in the closing minutes of Tuesday’s finale, right before host Carson Daly announces the results, Blake predicted Bryce would be a country star no matter what.

“You already did it, mate. You’ve literally already made it,” Blake proclaimed. “I know my genre and I know the country music fans out there. You’ve got a career ahead of you, man.

As for Tuesday’s other results, Team Blake’s indie song stylist Bodie had to settle for second place, while the country vote seemed split between Team Blake’s Brayden Lape, a green 16-year-old who’d only been singing for two years . years and deservedly finished last, and Team country-rocker Camila Morgan Myles, who placed third. Omar José Cardona, another Instant Save contender who had made it to the final against all odds, was probably the strongest tech vocalist in the top five—as his coach John Legend put it, he was “the vocals” — but a cheesy, choreographed Michael Jackson number on Monday’s live competitive show may have landed him in fourth place.

But all is not lost for any of the top five, especially Morgan and Bodie. For example, Morgan’s trainer third-place finisher Camila Cabello actually finished third on another TV talent show, X Factor United States, with Fifth Harmony, but went on to become the biggest star to emerge from that series in the United States. And Camila assured Morgan, the only woman present The voice Season 22 top five: “This is such a crazy industry, and it’s hard to be a woman in this industry, but no matter what happens tonight, you’re so incredibly talented. You moved me. You moved us all.

And the best guest performance from Tuesday’s finale was a cover of Duran Duran’s “Ordinary World,” dedicated to the LGBTQ+ community (including those murdered in the Club Q shooting in Colorado), by a man who got away with enough well after becoming the runner up in another singing show: american idolis Adam Lambert. Like Adam, The voice runner-up Bodie has a knack for taking risks and making songs his own (Bodie’s “Golden Hour” tour de force was declared perhaps “the greatest performance I’ve ever seen on this show” by Blake), so also he could have a bright future.

As for the future of The voice, the show’s 23rd season, premiering spring next year, will be Blake’s last; will be joined for one last hurray by his old friend, returning trainer Kelly Clarkson, and two new cast members, Chance the Rapper and The X Factor UK veteran Niall Horan. Will Blake win one last time and walk away with a total of 10 perfect wins? Watch this space and see you then.

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