When gauging who will win Season 8 of “The Voice,” look no further than iTunes and the chart dominance shown by Sawyer Fredericks. After the Top 6 performances on Monday night, there were two contestants that were all but assured a spot in the Top 5: Fredericks and Meghan Linsey. This was simply due to the fact that they were the only two artists to place songs in the Top 10 in the iTunes Top 200 Songs chart (which gives artists votes per sales times 10). Tuesday night’s results reveal show was actually about who would go home out of the remaining four contestants that didn’t break the Top 10.
Still, as Amy Reiter at the Los Angeles Times recapped on May 6, the single elimination wasn’t all that surprising, either. Kimberly Nichole’s rendition of Tom Petty’s “Free Fallin'” was a “waste… of her riveting onstage persona” and her suggestive moves during the cover of Michael Jackson’s “Dirty Diana” “had been, perhaps, a tad too complete for ‘The Voice’ voters’ taste.” And so, as noted, “the audience did not embrace her this week.”
That leaves Team XTina (Aguilera) with only one artist remaining. She’s in good company. Team Adam (Levine) and Team Blake (Shelton) are also down to one artist. Between them, they have six wins — not a good sign for Team XTina. But it is Team Pharrell (Williams) that holds the decided advantage. He has two contestants — including the aforementioned Sawyer Fredericks — still vying for “The Voice” Season 8 crown.
According to TV Media Insights, Sawyer Fredericks placed two songs in the Top 10 on the iTunes charts this week: Al Green’s “Take Me To The River,” which placed at No. 10, and May Erlewine’s “Shine On,” which peaked at No. 3. Both songs gave the 16-year-old New Yorker a times-ten bonus that no doubt catapulted him straight into the Top 5 contestants. (Those sales numbers — as counted as votes — will also count in the finale totals, which gives young Sawyer a decided advantage, given that he’s placed a song in the Top 10 for the past four weeks. Only one other “The Voice” artist has placed more than one song in the Top 10 this season: Meghan Linsey. She did it for the second time this week with the traditional hymn “Amazing Grace.”
TV Media Insights listed four songs by Fredericks from previous episodes that were still present on the iTunes Top 200 Songs chart, including his cover of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Simple Man,” which was still in the Top 100 at No. 73. The only other artist with a song in the Top 200 (not counting the two songs each contestant did Monday night, all of which were on the chart) was Joshua Davis. His version of Sting’s “Fields Of Gold” was still holding strong at No. 153.
Meghan Linsey’s second Top 10 also makes her a near shoe-in for runner-up. Because, barring anything shockingly unforeseen occurring in the next couple weeks, it looks like Sawyer Fredericks has all but won Season 8. And yes, that would mean that Team XTina will lose as a coach for the fifth time. It will be Team Pharrell’s first victory.
“The Voice” airs on NBC Television each Monday and Tuesday night. The show begins at 8 p.m. (EST)