UPDATED: NBC has tapped Shakira and Usher as coaches on the upcoming spring cycle of The Voice. They will replace original coaches Christina Aguilera and CeeLo Green, who are taking the cycle off but are expected to return next fall. Aguilera is releasing an album and is going on tour, while Green is working on two albums and is developing a comedy series for NBC based on his life.
Fellow Voice coaches Adam Levine and Blake Shelton are staying put for Season 4, joined by Shakira and Usher. “We know we needed to find another of the world’s greatest female vocal talents, and Shakira instantly came to mind”, Voice executive producer Mark Burnett said about the search to find a replacement for Aguilera. He added that “Usher is not just a singer or an entertainer, he is a global icon.”
When it expanded The Voice to two editions a year, NBC brass said that not all Voice coaches will be able to do both cycles of the reality singing competition because of the demands of their music careers. NBC chairman Bob Greenblatt said the network was “happy to accommodate” Green and Aguilera’s commitments. “The participants on our show benefit from our coaches’ expertise and their continued success in the music business allows for significant new contributions to the contestants when they return,” he said. The Voice, now in the second week of its second season, hails from Burnett, John De Mol and Warner Horizon. It got off to a solid ratings start and beat rival The X Factor in their head-to-head faceoff last Wednesday.