Jake Barker from St. Petersburg makes it to the next round on 'The Voice'
Bartender Jake Barker, a 28-year-old from St. Petersburg, caused quite a stir on Monday night's episode of The Voice when he and Stevie Jo of Team Usher faced off in the Battle Rounds.
They performed Steve Winwood's Higher Love (watch it below), and coach Blake Shelton was right when he said it was one of the best-matched Battle Rounds the show has ever had. The two have very similiar voices and styles. In the end, Usher chose Stevie Jo over Barker, but wait! Everyone loved Barker so much that all three remaining judges wanted to steal him for their team instead of let him go home. In the end, Barker chose Adam Levine as his new coach, because, between the tattoos and the penchant for falsetto, the two are basically soul mates.
We think Barker, who had never performed in front of a crowd before his blind audition on The Voice, has a good shot to go far in the competition: He's got a solid voice, a great falsetto and an eery vocal (and physical) resemblance to Justin Timberlake (he's actually covered a Timberlake song). Watch him and Stevie Jo face off Monday night, and look for him to compete again in a few weeks during the next set of Battle Rounds:
Two other Tampa Bay area natives also worth keeping an eye on: Team Adam's Josh Kaufman, who was born in Sarasota, faces the Battle Rounds this week; and Team Blake's showstopper Sisaundra Lewis, from Polk County, advanced to the next round Monday night.