Team Reba’s Ruby Leigh and Al Boogie took the stage for their Battle on Monday, performing a duet of a Dolly Parton classic, “Jolene.”
He had plenty of praise for Ruby too, however, telling her, “I was so excited to hear you again, because what happened here at your Blind Audition was one of my most memorable moments I’ve had on the show.
Gwen Stefani admitted that Ruby’s voice and stage presence constantly make her forget that she’s only 16. “I had chills up and down my body when you [sang] ‘cry,’ because you yodeled it, and it was stunningly perfect,” she told the young singer.
Niall and Gwen both leaned towards Ruby, however, Gwen added, “That’s not fair, because Al Boogie, you are amazing!”
“You both were compelling,” John Legend agreed. “I think Al, you started out as an underdog… But you killed it man, you really did.”
To Ruby, he raved, “I love how much character your voice has. You just feel so in possession of your identity as an artist.”
As for their coach, Reba said the Battle “showed the versatility of you both.”
To Ruby, whom she challenged to show more emotion during the rehearsals, she said, “You performed magnificently, you made me very proud.” On the other hand, she added that Al “stepped up to the plate and knocked it out of the ballpark.”
Ultimately, Ruby won out, moving on to the Three-Way Knockouts for Team Reba!
ET spoke with Gwen ahead of this season’s Battles, where she opened up about how surreal it is to return to The Voice without hubby Blake Shelton by her side. The Cowboy departed the NBC singing competition earlier this year, after 23 seasons.
“It feels kind of like [my] first season, before I knew he existed,” she shared. “It’s kind of weird, but it’s also like, I’m having so much fun.”
“Like, I’m only here because it’s fun,” Gwen added. “The coaching and actually getting to know your team after the Blinds is my favorite thing, ’cause it’s like, the dream’s there.”
She admitted, however, that it is a little nerve-wracking to look to Blake’s chair and instead see The Voice‘s newest coach — the Queen of Country herself.
Of how Reba’s handled her first season so far, Gwen recalled the Blind Auditions with a laugh.
“She did great. She didn’t have to do anything,” she remembered. “She’d be like, ‘I think you were great. I’d love to have you on my team,’ and then they’d be like, ‘I pick you!'”
The Voice airs Mondays at 8 p.m. PT/ET and Tuesdays at 9 p.m. PT/ET on NBC.