The Voice Season 17 continued Monday night (Oct. 14) with the final blind auditions, in which returning coaches Blake SheltonKelly Clarkson and John Legend, as well as returning alum Gwen Stefani, finalized their teams. The second half of the show introduced the Battle Rounds, which features contestants going head-to-head and also receiving instruction from special guest star mentors.

Team Blake had none other than Darius Rucker as a star advisor, who had kind words for his recruiting coach. "I've watched this show for so many years, and I wanted to become an advisor so I could give a little bit of advice on how I did it," Rucker noted. "Blake and I have been friends a long time. We hang out and laugh, and when he asked me, I felt honored."

Rucker likewise had the respect of Shelton's first two Battle Round contenders, Josie Jones and Kat Hammock. The song chosen for the two different but very feminine voices was John Denver's 1971 "Take Me Home, Country Roads," which Shelton admitted might be a stretch for a modern performer.

"Darius thinks I gave y'all too hard of a song," Shelton noted.

"It's a great song, and it's one of those songs, if you're gonna do it, you gotta take it and make it your own," Rucker said. To that, Shelton elaborated, "John Denver wasn't necessarily a country artist. He was folk, he was pop. His music kind of transcends genre."

The two singers gave a lilting and not very battling Battle, which had coach Legend raving about "Sweetness exuding from everything," while Stefani observed "I just kept thinking about butterflies and rainbows."

What really mattered, however, was Shelton's opinion. "Kat, what comes out of your mouth is just, like, this phenomenon," he observed. "At the end of the day, there's nobody else like you, and congratulations on that, because to be unique at this point in music is impossible."

Needless to say, Shelton picked Hammock, saying he was just going along with what he knows and what he thinks the public will respond to.

We'll be following along each week to keep up with the Season 17 competition, so be sure to check in weekly to check the progress of your favorites on the show.

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