The second chapter of "The Voice" came to a shocking close on Tuesday night during a star-studded live event on NBC. Guest performances from Hall & Oates, Lady Antebellum and an young up-and-comer named Justin Bieber only delayed what the night was really about: choosing a winner between rocker chick Juliet Simms, popera artist Chris Mann, R&B crooner Jermaine Paul and soft-rock journeyman Tony Lucca.
In the end, [ YES, SPOILER TIME ALREADY] it was former backup singer Paul, of Blake Shelton's team, who came out on top in a surprise upset over media frontrunners Simms, who followed in second, and Lucca, who placed third in front of Mann in a close vote.
With a big rock voice, Paul delivered powerful renditions of songs by Bon Jovi, Phil Collins and Journey and closed out his run by hitting classic soul and pushing an R&B ballad and a country tune toward gospel.
"I wanted to show how many things I could do," Paul said after Monday's show, which once again captured the father of four getting emotional when confronted with the concept of singing as a means to provide for his family.
That emotional connection obviously played heavy in him winning the crown. He often picked songs that he felt were a reflection of the way he saw life and how he felt about his wife and children. He told Billboard that before he performed Collins' "Against All Odds' he took the in-ear monitors out during the introduction so that he would not get caught up in the story. "That song was how I felt about my wife," he told Billboard at the time," and I wanted to make sure the emotion was in the song."
Throughout the competition, much has been made of his working as a backup singer for Alicia Keys. Using his full name of Jeremiah "Jermaine" Paul, he sang on her track "Diary" and the "Unplugged" album as well as on the Luther Vandross tribute "So Amazing." He has also recorded with British soul singer Joss Stone.
As a member of the group 1 Accord, he was signed to Shaquille O'Neal's Twism Records. He has also sung background vocals for Alicia Keys, Mary J. Blige, Brandy and Kelly Price.
Paul's prize for winning? Like last year's winner, Javier Colon, he snags a recording contract with Universal Republic and $100,000.