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Blake Shelton, Shakira duet takes 'The Voice' coaches into new territory

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Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images Photo: Video by YouTube

Blake Shelton, Shakira duet takes 'The Voice' coaches into new territory

By Stephen L. Betts. CREATED Feb 24, 2014

NBC's hit singing competition "The Voice" is back for season 6, with Blake Shelton and Adam Levine joined by returning judges Usher and Shakira. Monday night's (Feb. 24) premiere at 8:00 PM ET on NBC will feature the blind auditions. Adam is the reigning "Voice" champ. He claimed victory last season with contestant Tessanne Chin. Still, Adam, who has won the show twice, remains one behind three-time winner Blake.

While each coach hopes to build a winning team and takes the competition seriously, another potentially winning combination has emerged from the TV series -- in the form of a musical collaboration between Blake and Shakira.

The Colombia-born singer told Ryan Seacrest recently that her upcoming album will feature a duet with the country superstar.

"That was awesome," Shakira says of cutting the song with Blake. "We just [recorded it] -- it’s a country/folk song … I kind of directed him. I wrote the song with some people from Nashville and I sent it to him and I was super-nervous. I was like, 'Oh my god. What's he going to think?' And he loved it. He said, 'Wow! This is exactly what you were talking about. I love this song.'"

Whatever sparks flew in the studio, Shakira says there is still plenty of chemistry among this group of judges.

"I think the chemistry is better than ever," she notes. "I'm having fun … [although] Adam [gets on my nerves the most] because he's so competitive! And Usher is like Switzerland, he's a little more neutral. Blake can get on my nerves too, but he's too funny."

Shakira's self-titled album will be released March 25. "The Voice" premieres tonight, Monday, Feb. 24, at 8:00 PM on NBC.

Stephen L. Betts

Stephen L. Betts

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Stephen L. Betts ("Steve") is a Nashville-based journalist who started his career as a tour guide, karaoke operator and library assistant at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.