Every so often, a contestant goes on The Voice and offers a new twist on an old song. Valerie Ponzio took a chance on reinventing Johnny Cash's "Ring Of Fire," and it totally wowed the judges.
An El Paso native, Ponzio kicked off her performance with an impassioned, earthy tone. Instead of the horn lines, a smooth fiddle and light percussion move the song along.
But when she gets to the chorus, Valerie Ponzio amps up the energy. Her smoothness roughs over around the edges and she suddenly feels a bit like a rock chick. In the end, all four judges turned around.
"That was full of...so much beautiful things," judge Alicia Keys says. "You are the most well-rounded singer I think for this particularly panel of judges that I've really ever heard," Adam Levine adds.
Ponzio takes the compliment quite well. She also notes that she grew up basically obsessed with Gwen Stefani, much to Blake Shelton's dismay.
Valerie Ponzio is a 32-year-old country/Americana artist. That really tipped Shelton off, who said he can help her out with her Nashville connections. And, honestly, he's the one coach who really help put other singers in good positioning in country music.
We won't know who Ponzio chooses until a future episode, but we don't envy the difficult decision of choosing between the coaches. If you want to check out some other covers from Ponzio, check out her YouTube channel.
The Voice season 12 is rolling right along, now five episodes in with the blind auditions scheduled to conclude March 14. The battle rounds begin March 20 and conclude March 28, followed by the live episodes starting April 17.
As usual, country music seems pretty well-represented in the singing competition. The show has so far spawned several semi-successful country and Americana singers, including Cassadee Pope, Danielle Bradbery, The Swon Brothers, Craig Wayne Boyd and RaeLynn.