Heading into his 23rd and final season on “The Voice,” Coach Blake Shelton says it’s about time he did nothing.
“This was incredible, but it’s time, you know,” he said this week on “Today”, where he appeared with the other three “Voice” coaches for a joint talk. “It’s time for not even what’s next. A little nothing would be nice.”
Kelly Clarkson, Chance the Rapper and Niall Horan joined Shelton for the interview by “Voice” host Carson Daly, who, in addition to hosting the singing contest, also hosts the NBC morning show features. Chance and Horan are new this season.
“When I came on this show as a coach, I mean, everything in my life was turned upside down. And in a good way, you know? Shelton said, referring to early 2011, shortly after being invited to join the Grand Ole Opry and right when he married Miranda Lambert, his second wife.
The cast of coaches at the time consisted of him, Adam Levine, CeeLo Green and Christina Aguilera, a roster that would last three seasons before the door opened for a total of 18 full-time and two part-time coaches. Since then, the presence of 46-year-old Shelton has been the only constant on the show.
Levine, the second longest serving coach, retired after Season 16. Clarkson has recorded the third most appearances, having served as a coach for seven seasons to date after appearing as a part-time advisor in Seasons 2 and 13.
Shelton and Lambert divorced in July 2015, when “The Voice” was between seasons 8 and 9. Season 9 was Gwen Stefani’s second as a coach, and she announced her divorce from singer Gavin Rossdale in August 2015.
Stefani and Shelton, who didn’t know each other before meeting on the show in 2014, fueled the rumor mill by Halloween 2015. Five years after that, they got engaged and married in July 2021 in Oklahoma.
“I met my wife on this show,” Shelton told Daly on Monday. “It has changed my life in every way possible, from a personal standpoint.”
It’s also been a few years more TV work than planned for Shelton, who said he was “on the verge of ending it when COVID hit” right after season 18 aired in early 2020.
“I didn’t want to walk away from the show during the pandemic and let everyone down,” he said. “I mean, this show has changed my life. I will stay here until the world returns to normal.”
And as Shelton returns for the show’s 23rd season, which kicked off Monday and continues Tuesday night on NBC, “normal” appears to be back: California’s state of emergency related to the pandemic ends at midnight.
Almost time to do a little idle – just after Shelton competes with Clarkson, Chance and Horan for his 10th win as a coach.