Michigan’s Joshua Davis brings ‘Hymn’ to ‘Voice’ finale

Adam Graham
The Detroit News

Michigan’s Joshua Davis debuted his original single “A Working Man’s Hymn” Monday night on NBC, and Tuesday night, he finds out if it was enough to earn him the title of winner of the eighth season of “The Voice.”

“A Working Man’s Hymn” was one of three songs the Traverse City singer performed on Monday’s two-hour show, where he joined fellow finalists Sawyer Fredericks, Koryn Hawthorne and Meghan Linsey. Davis also sang a version of Leonard Cohen’s tried-and-true singing competition anthem “Hallelujah,” and he performed a duet of Paul Simon’s “Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes” alongside his “Voice” coach Adam Levine.

Davis, a graduate of Michigan State University who gained a loyal following in the Lansing-based band Steppin’ In It, earned strong marks from the judges for his performances. Christina Aguilera called his “Hallelujah” “heartwarming,” while Blake Shelton praised the power of his pen after he sang “Hymn.” “You’re a great songwriter, dude,” Shelton said. “That song’s freakin’ stuck in my head!”

Levine, too, complimented his skills as a songwriter. “This isn’t just you writing a song. This is you writing a fantastic song,” he said.

Davis, 37, faces stiff competition on his way to Tuesday’s season finale, however. Hawthorne’s Pharrell-produced original song, “Bright Fire,” was the catchiest (and most contemporary) of the night’s original songs, while Shelton praised Linsey’s version of “When a Man Loves a Woman” as the night’s single best performance.

Meanwhile, Fredericks was given the night’s important final slot, which the 16-year-old used to perform Neil Young’s “Old Man.”

The two-hour finale of “The Voice” airs at 9 p.m. Tuesday and is preceded by an hour-long recap of the season.