Jessica Mauboy reveals her biggest challenge filming The Voice: ‘Not ready’

She’s known for her powerhouse vocals and glowing personality, but Jessica Mauboy showed a whole different side to herself when she joined The Voice as a coach last year.

After a very successful season in 2021, which saw the singing competition achieve its highest ratings in five years, the former Australian Idol star is set to return to screens next week alongside fellow coaches Keith Urban, Rita Ora and Guy Sebastian for The Voice Generations.

The Voice coaches Keith Urban, Jessica Mauboy, Rita Ora and Guy Sebastian.
Jessica Mauboy has revealed the biggest thing she learned filming her first season of The Voice last year. Photo: Channel Seven

Chatting with Yahoo Lifestyle about her role on the show and her experience last year, Jessica opened up about why she felt it was so important for her to just be herself.

“I think it's kind of the first time that people who don't follow me or don't really know who I am really got that firsthand,” she said.

“So that's really exciting that I was able to be up there, not just as an artist role model, but I just think as a person, as a human and someone who's been right in that place before, having been on a show like The Voice.

Idol was that for me, like I was one day as a 15-year-old hanging out under a mango tree, to then going straight onto a stage where there were just millions of people, there's a structure, it was just mental. So it brought back a lot of memories being a coach.”


Jessica quickly received praise from her fellow judges and viewers alike for the way she helped guide her artists on The Voice, yet she believes she acted “more like a mentor than a coach”.

“Even when the cameras weren't rolling, I'd be there alongside my artists just going, ‘What do you need? Do you need water?’. Literally like an assistant to the artist,” she explained.

“I felt more like a family member or a friend just igniting this kind of world for them to be present in and I think that's always a very healthy thing to do, especially when you’re in a mechanical world that just goes and goes.”

Jessica Mauboy on The Voice.
Jessica says she felt ‘more like a family member’ to her artists than a coach. Photo: Instagram/jessicamauboy

The Glow hitmaker also revealed what she learned from her first season that she hopes to bring to The Voice Generations, as well as what her biggest challenge was.

“I was not ready for the battle. I was not prepared, I can tell you that honestly,” she admitted. “I battle in my music, not so much as a coach, and I think I learnt a lot more to kind of be like, ‘I'm going to get you on my team’.

“So really positioning that kind of spark between myself and the artists and what I could do for them. It's all kind of really hard because you don't know what to expect, but I think the next time I'm going to be a lot more prepared in what I'm going to deal with, alongside pros who have done shows like it around the world, so it's nice.”

Speaking about her fellow superstar coaches, who have each appeared on previous seasons within The Voice franchise, Jessica described Keith, Rita and Guy as her “cheerleaders” on the show.

“The coaches were all very open to giving advice and were always just like, ‘You’re killing it, this is your first time doing it but you're totally spot on’,” she recalled.

“It's all about bringing personality and realness and so I hope I just get to be there and thrive with these artists and be able to share more of that experience and see them just rise and keep rising and become the artist that they need to be through the experience.”

The Voice Generations premieres 7:30pm Monday, 31 January on Channel 7 and 7plus.

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