‘The Voice’: Wendy Moten Slays Fan-Selected Aretha Franklin Song

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The Top 11 hopefuls on Season 21 of The Voice returned on Monday (Nov. 22) to sing their hearts out in front of the four judges in hopes of moving into the Top 10.

First up was Team Blake Shelton‘s Wendy Moten. Before stepping onstage, Moten — who happened to be celebrating her birthday — received a phone call of support from country superstar Vince Gill.

Moten has toured with several artists over the years, knows Gill and appreciated his comforting words before her performance.

This week, fans got to choose the songs for each competitor, and they gave Moten a tall order, asking her to sing Aretha Franklin‘s “Freeway of Love.”

Onstage, Moten did not disappoint. Honoring the song lyrics, which mention the words “pink Cadillac,” she appeared on the floor decked out in a glittering pink cape and bell bottoms to match. And while she looked every part a star, it was her vocals that blew the roof off of the room.

Moten commanded the stage with her powerhouse voice and wide range while surrounded by a few backup singers. For a moment, the camera panned to Shelton, whose facial expression proved that he enjoyed the entire display.

“Wendy, you are one of my favorite people to watch and sing,” Ariana Grande, who was first to comment from the judging panel, shared. “You are just so incredible every time. I was so excited because you choose these humongous songs and honor them, and you make them your own! Also, tonight, I feel like we saw you have way more fun than you have. It was so infectious.”

John Legend followed Grande by calling Moten a “flawless vocalist” with a beautiful technique.

“Wendy, you’re stepping into a new artist role with icon status,” Shelton — who also has two other standouts on his team vying for the win — said. “That has not happened. You’re performing like an icon on that stage with so much comfort. Everything you do vocally is literally perfect!”

Moten, of course, is no stranger to the stage, having backed up several country artists in the past. She also was once signed to a label and released a self-titled album in 1992. In 2019, she made her Grand Ole Opry debut.

Moten is also no stranger to singing songs by some of the greatest vocal legends. In previous episodes of The Voice, she channeled Franklin’s “Ain’t No Way” and Whitney Houston’s version of “I Will Always Love You,” notably penned by Dolly Parton.

Be sure to catch The Voice every Monday and Tuesday night on NBC.

Famous Singers from The Voice, Then + Now

Ten years (and counting) made a huge difference for many of the most popular singers and stars of The VoiceBlake Shelton looks noticeably different, but so do some of country music’s most memorable performers.
Winners like Cassadee Pope and Danielle Bradbery wore baby faces when they auditioned during their respective seasons. The same can be said for Morgan Wallen, a forgotten castmember from the show who’s transformed more than anyone else on this list of The Voice stars then and now.

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