Whether or not Bryce Leatherwood wins Season 22 of The Voice, he’s already a star in Blake Shelton’s eyes. The long-running country coach, who wrangled the 22-year-old contender for his team early in the televised competition, admits that his hometown of Ada, Okla., has been rooting for the hopeful, who has now found a place in the Top 10.

“I believe we’re still going way forward with you in just the way you have ascended. People are buying into Bryce Leatherwood now in a big way,” Shelton told Leatherwood on Monday (Nov. 28) night during the Live Playoffs.

“I can speak for my hometown now in Oklahoma. They don’t care about me anymore. It’s all about Bryce, man,” he added.

This week, it was the fans' turn to select which song each artist would wind up singing. For Leatherwood, that song was Morgan Wallen’s “Sand in My Boots.” Up to this point, Leatherwood has channeled country classics including George Strait’s “Amarillo by Morning” and Conway Twitty’s “Goodbye Time.” So, rendering Wallen’s smash hit from his 2021 Dangerous: The Double Album saw Leatherwood showing a new side as he took a more modern approach to his usual stylings of music.

Despite that, he proved he could deliver on both traditional country sounds and newer adaptations of the genre. During his performance, Leatherwood even stepped outside of his routine look of a cowboy hat and belt buckle. Instead, he wore his hair gelled back and utilized his deep baritone vocals to deliver the lyrics of the fan-picked ballad, which tells the story of a man returning home after experiencing heartbreak from a love that’s no more.

Afterward, it was clear the judges were beyond impressed by Leatherwood’s vocal control and effortless take on the Wallen tune. Two coaches, Camila Cabello and John Legend, expressed their excitement for the Georgia-born singer’s rendition of the song.

“Your tone of voice is just like butter. It’s pleasant. It's salted butter,” Cabello said. “Your performance is like a nice piece of sourdough bread. I just want to eat it up!”

“I just feel like you're so classic. You deliver the song with such confidence and smoothness. Your voice sounds at home with these songs you’ve been singing. I think that’s a great song, and you performed it so beautifully,” Legend added.

Fans of Leatherwood will find out if his performance of “Sand in My Boots” was enough to send him into the semi-finals when The Voice returns on Tuesday (Nov. 29) night on NBC.

Famous Singers from The Voice, Then + Now

Ten years (and counting) made a huge difference for many of the most popular singers and stars of The VoiceBlake Shelton looks noticeably different, but so do some of country music's most memorable performers.

Winners like Cassadee Pope and Danielle Bradbery wore baby faces when they auditioned during their respective seasons. The same can be said for Morgan Wallen, a forgotten castmember from the show who's transformed more than anyone else on this list of The Voice stars then and now.

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