Tony Vincent Eliminated from “The Voice” by Cee Lo’s Odd Staging & Song Choice

I’ve been a fan of Tony Vincent ever since his first goose-pimple inspiring performance of Queen’s “We Are the Champions” in the audition rounds on The Voice. I thought for sure that his versatile tenor voice would carry him through to the final rounds. But it was not to be. After a troubled performance during Monday night’s live rounds, Tony was eliminated from the show. Tony had some pitch problems, which leads me to think that he couldn’t hear the band. The rest of the trouble stemmed from a bad song choice and weird staging by his coach, Cee Lo Green.

On Monday night, Tony sang “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” by Tears for Fears. I can’t say that I was in love with the song. I felt like it forced him to sing too much in the lower register of his voice and didn’t provide enough opportunities for him to soar. I agreed with coach Christina Aguilera, who said she felt like the song choice restricted him.

The Norsefire regime takes totalitarian imager...

The Norsefire regime takes totalitarian imagery from many sources, fictional and non-fictional. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Worst of all was the staging. It started off with Tony standing atop a giant podium with the word “red” in a circular insignia. Creepy guys wearing red masks and black outfits did a militaristic dance around the podium. Put it all together, and it looked like Tony was the leader of an evil dictatorship. It reminded me of a scene from the movie V for Vendetta, where the High Chancellor spews totalitarian propaganda in front of a red-and-black background. Compare this screenshot from the movie (at the right), to the video from Tony’s performance ( at the end of this post) and you’ll see what I mean.

I get where the staging came from. Cee Lo’s signature colors are red and black, and his team is nicknamed “Team Red”. It also makes some amount of sense to evoke images of a military leader for a song titled “Everybody Wants to Rule the World”. But I wish Cee Lo would have thought a little bit harder about the end result. It’s just not a good thing to evoke images of a totalitarian regime when you’re trying to win a singing contest.

Tony did his best to save himself from elimination on the results show. His magnetic performance of “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)” combined the best elements of Annie Lennox’s original version and Marilyn Manson’s cover of the song. I thought it perfectly encapsulated Tony’s unique personality and singing style. I was devastated when Cee Lo chose to save Cheesa. She may belt out powerful vocals, but the girl can’t sing in tune. And her tone quality is unremarkable. She sounds just like any number of generic R&B singers you’ll hear on the radio today.

Below, you can check out Tony’s version of “Sweet Dreams”, as well as the ill-fated “Everybody Wants to Rule the World”. I hope that Tony will make another solo album in the future (he released an EP back in 2008). I’ll definitely be one of the first in line to buy it.

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