The Voice UK 2019: Tom Jones reveals what he REALLY looks for in contestants – Express

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Sir Tom Jones, 78, has been a judge on The Voice for six years and will be returning for his seventh alongside Olly Murs, 34, Jennifer Hudson, 37, and will.i.am, 43.
The legendary Welsh singer was the winning mentor this year, helping Ruti Olajugbagbe, 19, take the crown as the 2018 champion.
Ruti wasn’t Tom’s first winning contestant as he also helped season one champion Leanne Mitchell become victorious, showing he has a diligent ear for picking successful singers for his team.
However, ahead of the ITV series return next week, the judge has admitted he will be looking for the contestants to be “honest” and “original” with their performances.
They’ve got to be honest
Sir Tom Jones
Tom explained: “Honesty is the first thing. They’ve got to be honest.
“Sometimes you can tell that they’re singing a certain way because they’ve heard other people doing it or they’re copying the record they’ve heard so they sing it too much like the original.
“There’s no point in that. So I’m looking out for originality.
“The honesty of the singer has got to come through so you think, I can hear that person,” the singer continued.
The Welshman also revealed song choice is particularly important during the blind auditions round if the contestants want any chance of getting the judges to turn around.
He said: “If they pick the wrong song it’s difficult. Sometimes they don’t even know themselves and that’s a thing with coaching that’s important.”The Voice UK 2019: Tom Jones reveals what he REALLY looks forThe Voice UK 2019: Tom Jones returns judgesAlthough Tom is veteran on the show, the next series will be former X Factor contestant Olly’s second stint in the red chair.
Olly will be hoping to secure the position as winning mentor this year, having helped Lauren Bannon, 27, reach the finals this year.
Speaking about his fellow judges, Olly said: “I feel the coaches have got to know me more. I feel they get my banter or sense of humour.
“We don’t all hang out and go drinking and clubbing together but when we’re together as a four piece in those chairs there’s just something really special between us.”
The upcoming season will be the third to air on ITV, as the show made a switch to ITV in 2017, with Emma Willis, 42, on presenting duties.The Voice UK 2019: Emma Willis hostHowever, there is one aspect of the show that will be receiving a shake up this year regrading the format in which contestants are allowed to compete.
As well as soloists and duos, trios will also be given the chance to try and wow the judges with their vocal performance.
Olly revealed all four judges will end up with a trio at the end of the blind auditions rounds, which he stated was completely unintentional.
The judges will then pit their acts up against each other to bring their teams down before heading to the knockout rounds.
A semi-final will follow before the champion is crowned in the grand final which will air sometime in April.
The Voice UK begins on Saturday January 5 at 8pm on ITV.
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