Josh Kaufman Should Make ‘The Voice’ Top 5

As competition tightens, Indy’s Great Hope shot up the iTunes singles chart overnight, fighting to stay alive.

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Update: Josh Kaufman, branded by The Voice as Indy’s soulful family man, has been named the first to move on from tonight’s elimination episode to Monday’s Top 5 show. In the “bottom four”: Sisaundra Lewis, Delvin Choice, Audra McLaughlin, and Kat Perkins. And the United States of Twitter elected to save … Kat.

It’s been 12 hours since the Top 8 contestants of The Voice on NBC gave their all, with hopes of seizing Top 5 spots. The results—which incorporate online and phone-based voting and song downloads—will be announced tonight at 8 p.m. And believe it or not, there was more to last night’s show than coach Adam Levine’s new hairdo (the Miley Cyrus, or, as fellow coach Blake Shelton put it, the Susan Powter). Indianapolis’s Josh Kaufman, now dubbed The Soul Man by the show’s powers-that-be, proved again that he’s worthy of a final-five slot.

Early in the show, Kaufman controlled Bonnie Raitt’s “I Can’t Make You Love Me” with pitch perfection. When he mixes his gospel roots with that soulful jazz tone, as he did last night, it would be shocking if he didn’t make the Top 2. And by the looks of it, America agrees. Around 1:30 a.m. overnight, he entered the Top 5 on iTunes Top 200 Singles Chart. The song is presently perched at No. 3 on that roster. Fans can purchase the single here, which, again, contributes to the overall tally of votes.

Probably his biggest barrier, Christina Grimmie, sits a few spots underneath him—for the time being—with her second consecutive cover of a rap song, Lil Wayne’s “How To Love.” These two have become quite accustomed to charting on iTunes. Kaufman found the Top 10 two weeks ago by covering Sam Smith’s “Stay With Me.” Then Grimmie’s version of Drake’s “Hold On, We’re Going Home” zipped up the chart last week. Kaufman now appears to have taken the reins yet again. 

You’ve got to hand it to him. Kaufman is pulling his weight in battling Grimmie, billed as the Internet Sensation she is by Voice producers. Grimmie has already toured with Selena Gomez and boasts 2.3 million Facebook likes, if you were unaware. But Indy’s guy is fresh and gaining thousands of Twitter followers and new fans each week. He’s also tapping into the younger crowd with his family-friendly vibe and trendy fashion sense. I foresee these two making it to the end, letting their varying demographics settle the score.

I mentioned in last night’s live blog that Kristen Merlin, Jake Worthington, and Kat Perkins will likely be packing their bags after tonight’s elimination episode. But according to iTunes numbers, Perkins and Worthington might be safe. Could this mean we see an end to one of the early favorites, the likes of Delvin Choice or Sisaundra Lewis? Tune in tonight: NBC, 8 p.m.

Voting closes today at noon sharp. Kaufman’s Indiana fans should be sure to get his track on iTunes, call 1-855-864-2302, and/or go online at NBC.com to cast votes.

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