Judges Growing Weary Of 'The Voice' Grind
"The Voice" creator and executive producer Mark Burnett may have pushed his luck announcing that the NBC hit singing competition would roll out its fourth season this fall, after wrapping the third this past May.
"Something's gotta give," Wetpaint reports judge Blake Shelton said. Word is, Maroon 5 lead singer and fellow judge Adam Levine seconded the emotion.
It's understandable that Levine, of all people, would join the frustration. In addition to performances, writing and recording with Maroon 5, Levine has also joined the second season of Ryan Murphy's FX thriller "American Horror Story" - also debuting this fall.
"I've been very vocal with the network and Mark Burnett's production company. It's like 'Man, this sucks, because the reason that you want the four of us is because we're viable artists right now, current. And we can't do both, if we do back-to-back seasons," Shelton said at this past June's CMA Awards.
He's got a point. Burnett knows it, too, according to TVGuide.com recently. He'd better: Cee Lo Green is reportedly the only one of Shelton, Levine, himself and Christina Aguilera who's unofficially committed himself to a Spring 2013 season.
"Burnett says he would like to keep Aguilera, Levine, Shelton, and Green on board as the show's core coaches, with the idea that they'll all have to miss some seasons and be replaced with temp stars," the site said.
Rotating judges, though....would that really be so bad?
Look at the furor that "American Idol" and "The X Factor" stirred up trying to fill more permanent judging vacancies after Jennifer Lopez, Steven Tyler, Paula Abdul and Nicole Scherzinger departed their respective prime-time competitions. It's because on these shows, the judges have gradually become such fixtures and held up as so symbolic of the show itself, that it nudges the aspiring talents from the spotlight.
This season's guest mentors on "The Voice" so far include Mary J. Blige, Michael Bublé and Green Day's Billie Joe Armstrong. What a novel concept to bring performers along as mentors, then possibly offer them a judging position the next year.
Ultimately, Shelton raises an undeniable point of cart-before-the-horse: people only care about the four judges' assessments because they're such renowned, visible performers; how long can they retain such reputations as performers if they're too busy judging others to make music?