The blind auditions are well and truly underway in the latest season of The Voice Australia.
While no doubt many of us already have a favourite of two, the judges – Keith Urban, Jessica Mauboy, Rita Ora and Guy Sebastian – are busy filling their team with diverse talent that they think will help them win the show.
“I think the number one thing that will get me to turn my chair is when I feel something; when there’s a truth in their voice that speaks to me beyond the sound of just their vocal and I’m able to feel it deeply,” Keith Urban revealed.
“Special voices are rare, and they’re worth fighting for as a coach when you hear them,” Guy added.
But just what happened to the winners that came before them? Did they make it big or did they disappear into oblivion?
Karise Eden, 2012
Karise auditioned for the very first season of The Voice Australia back in 2012 with the James Brown hit It's A Man's World. Within 12 seconds, all four coaches had turned around and she chose Seal as her mentor. She won the final, beating Keith Urban's singer Darren Percival and won a recording contract with EMI, $100,000 and a car.
Karise's debut single went straight into the charts and on 25 June 2012, four of her singles were in the top five. Her debut album My Journey went straight in at number one on the ARIA Albums Chart, where it remained for six weeks.
She has continued to release music and toured Australia with her live music in 2021. Her new EP Into the Black comes out Friday 13 May 2022.
Harrison Craig, 2013
Baby-faced Harrison showed the bullies of his childhood that a stutter doesn't need to get in the way of success. He also chose Seal as a coach after all four judges offered to mentor him – a decision that saw him crowned the winner.
He has since made a name for himself as a bit of a crooner. Aside from his musical success, he has also written a children's book, Harrison's Songs, telling his story about overcoming challenges to achieve his dream.
Anja Nissen, 2014
Auditioning for The Voice wasn't the first TV show Anja tried out her talent on and it also wasn't the last. She competed in Australian Junior Idol at just nine years old and Australia's Got Talent at 12 where she got to the semi-finals.
Her persistence paid off when she tried out for The Voice and made it all the way through to the end. Since then she has had great success both in Australia and in her parents' home country Denmark, where she was the runner up to represent the country in The Eurovision Song Contest in 2016 and then won the chance to represent Denmark in the 2017 Eurovision.
Today she is living in Los Angeles with her boyfriend of four years and continues to make music.
Ellie Drennan, 2015
Ellie was just 16 when she became a member of team Jessie in the 2015 season of The Voice.
It was by belting out Adele's song Take It All in the blind auditions that got the judges' attention. She had success with her recording contract following her win and in 2019 she started to release her music independently.
Alfie Arcuri, 2016
Alfie was the very first auditionee on The Voice in 2016 and luckily Delta saw his talent and quickly snapped him up for her team. He was known for his ballads which saw him crowned the champion that year. His debut single Cruel peaked at number 89 on the charts while his album Zenith cracked the top five.
None of this put the singer/songwriter off releasing self-penned Love Is Love to support the Yes vote for marriage equality in Australia and To My Self as an entry in the competition to represent Australia at the Eurovision Song Contest.
Judah Kelly, 2017
This down-to-earth bloke, who was a little bit country and a little bit soul, not only won over Delta in the blind auditions of The Voice in 2017 but also won over the nation. Showing that good things come to those who wait, Judah had auditioned for The X Factor Australia twice, in 2012 and 2014 without success before beating out Hoseah Partsch in the grand final of The Voice.
He discovered after his win that the public were a fickle lot. "People aren’t really fans of you, they’re fans of the show,” Judah told news.com.au. "They might stick around on social media (after the show has ended) and give you a ‘like’, but when it comes to paying for tickets and buying albums, the numbers don’t translate."
However he is still making the most out of what he's got. "I've been living my best life and looking after myself," he told followers on Instagram recently. "I've started training and working on my health again and I'm working on album number 3!"
Sam Perry, 2018
Right from the very beginning, Sam caused controversy on The Voice. As a loop DJ and beatboxer, Boy George questioned whether his music really complied with the rules of the singing show, saying: "This is The Voice and you’re not really a singer."
However, when his mentor Kelly Rowland got Sam to sing showing he had got the voice to win, George again criticised him by saying he was straying too far from what he auditioned with. "Almost losing who you are, that's the only thing I'm worried about," Boy George said on the show. "You are so cool. One of the coolest acts that have been on this show. Don't lose that coolness."
Sam went on to win and he's continued to perform at music festivals – with gigs picking up now that Covid restrictions are behind us.
Diana Rouvas, 2019
After originally appearing in the 2012 season of The Voice, Diana returned to audition again after deciding she was not willing to settle for fifth place. This time, with the help of mentor Boy George, she won the competition. Last year she competed to represent Australia at The Eurovision Song Contest 2020 finishing seventh.
While the global pandemic may have stemmed her plans for now, we're looking forward to seeing where tenacious Diana turns up next.
Chris Sebastian, 2020
Chris Sebastian's inclusion in The Voice Australia was always going to be controversial, given he is the brother of Australian singing sensation and Voice judge Guy Sebastian. But despite that, Chris wasn't going to let it stop him from showing the family's talent didn't stop with Guy.
"Controversy is just part of being on television. I knew it was going to be a thing on this show, but I don't care," he told the Sydney Morning Herald.
And in fairness to him, not only was he the frontman for hugely successful Aussie electric DJ duo Peking Duk, but it was the public that voted him through to the final and decided that he would be their winner last year.
His biggest project at the moment is his new son Kingston who was born last month!
Bella Taylor Smith, 2021
Bella was a fan favourite from the beginning so it wasn’t surprising when she won the show last year. But due to Covid restrictions, the 23-year-old winner found out watching the final on TV with everyone else!
"I was sitting on my couch not really sure what to think of it all, and all of a sudden, my name was called, and I was so filled with joy," Bella told TV Week.
After her win, Bella released her EP The Complete Collection. She has followed that up this year with the EP Look Me in the Eyes. It’s early days so time will tell just how far Bella can soar.
Watch The Voice 7.30pm Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday on Channel 7 and 7plus.
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