Full Billboard Cover Story with Video

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Billboard has shared their new interview and article with The Voice cast for season seven which hit newsstands today! They also included a nice video with a look behind-the-scenes with photographers Smallz + Raskind at the photo shoot.

In the article, Gwen calls The Voice “inspiring” for her in “a whole new way”. She likes how it’s shaken her life up a little and breaks her away from the norm. If Gwen wasn’t doing The Voice, she could see herself sitting and trying to write another No Doubt record. There isn’t too much with her in the interview, which is mostly based around the show’s following and the success rate of both the contestants and judges.

Photography by Smallz + Raskind, article written by Paul Brownfield for Billboard. Click on the link below to view the full piece.

Billboard — “The girl’s on time, right?” says Gwen Stefani to Blake Shelton. The 44-year-old No Doubt singer looks femme fatale-radiant in a black-and-white polka dot Saint Laurent blouse.

“Well, you’re not the biggest girl here,” Blake Shelton, 38, dead-pans in his Oklahoma drawl, taking a trademark dig at fellow coach Adam Levine.

Shelton’s not just busting chops: He’s revealing something fundamental about The Voice, NBC’s workhorse singing competition, which Stefani and Pharrell Williams, 41, are joining for its seventh season. Making “big girls” (or big boys) of its coaches has become its very reason for being. After all, despite its initial raison d’etre, the show, three years in, has never launched an actual star along the lines of American Idol alums Kelly Clarkson or Carrie Underwood.

Nonetheless, coach-boosting narrative aside, The Voice suffers from an obvious storytelling glitch. As a dream factory, it has anointed six winners — and they’ve all since vanished like loved ones on The Leftovers. “Who does better? The Voice judges or the Voice contestants?’ ” carped Simon Cowell to The New York Times in May. “It’s quite obvious the judges have sold a ton more records.” (In fact, a Voice coaching gig is almost certainly more coveted than a turn as an Idol judge.)

To freshen the brand, Stefani and Williams were chosen to replace Usher and Shakira — though “replaced” is not a word anyone around the show uses. Shakira may, supposedly, return, after leaving to have a baby (she’s now pregnant with her second child); Usher is promoting his upcoming movie, Hands of Stone, in which he plays the boxer Sugar Ray Leonard, and readying a new album and tour.

“Evolution” and “change” are not words that TV executives normally like to use to describe their franchises; a new way -forward can also be a risk to everything that has been built. The hope is that Stefani will be a triple-threat female-viewer magnet — pop star, fashionista, mother of three. (This writer is reminded multiple times on-set that she is breast-feeding; she gave birth to her third son, Apollo, in March). After Shakira, a wildly popular Latin artist, Stefani will need to bring her own fan base: presumably, moms old enough to recall No Doubt’s first hit single, “Don’t Speak,” in 1995, and, perhaps more importantly, the tween girls who wear Stefani’s fashion lines.

Stefani sees somewhat of a higher purpose to doing the show. “In my life and my career,” she says, “yes, I could just go back in and try to make another record right now with No Doubt, and see what happens while I’m in between breast-feedings and up all night. But this really shakes it up for me. This is inspiring in a whole new way.”

Mark Burnett, the producer who developed The Voice, likes to emphasize that it’s a family show: Leave the music business shenanigans to the likes of Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj, whose disastrous turn as American Idol judges included a Twitter war.

5 Replies to “Full Billboard Cover Story with Video”

  1. That kind of makes me wish she weren’t doing The Voice then if she would have done another ND record instead haha Oh well, it’s good exposure and it looks like she’s inspired.

  2. While a new solo record is going to arrive soon for the end of the year !
    I suppose, she wants to give an image proactive of herself !
    No Doubt could deliver a new song during the Voice ! It would be a big buzz for previous and new fans !

  3. im soooooooo glad theres no ND album. It would just be another embarrassment and tarnish there almost perfect catalog, this gig only ups gwens status, this is super big time!!

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