You would think Camila Cabello should know Shawn Mendes’ voice with her eyes shut, or her back turned. Well, yes, yes she does.
Unless you’ve never opened a pop-culture page in the past few years, then you’d know Cabello and Mendes were an item for several years, though the flame has gone out and they’ve gone their separate ways.
On Tuesday night’s (Sept. 27) round of blind auditions on The Voice, a potentially awkward moment happened when contestant Tanner Howe covered Mendes’ “Mercy,” an above-ordinary effort that reminded of a Lewis Capaldi and, yes, Mendes. Perhaps a little too much.
Howe, a 29-year-old California native, earned a three-chair turn. Only Cabello remained unmoved.
“The reason why I didn’t turn around is I felt like you sounded a little bit too much like him,” she explained, though not naming names. “Obviously, he has an amazing voice, I love this song,” but, Howe needs to “distinguish himself” from that other guy.
When he assured the judges he’ll find (and stick to) his own lane, Cabello chimed in, “I was in his lane, deeply.” Another potentially awkward moment.
Gwen Stefani, Blake Shelton and John Legend then worked through their sales pitches.
“You have a really strong, quality voice that sounds like an artist, like on a record. I like the style, it felt very confident,” Stefani enthused.
John Legend remarked that contestant’s lower tones got messy, though there’s a lot to work with, and Legend would presumably fix the mess.
Shelton’s best offer included a branded bag. But it wasn’t enough.
In the end, Howe joined Team Gwen.