The Swon Brothers didn't win “The Voice,” but the parting gifts — from national television exposure and a working relationship with Blake Shelton to a new car and a chance to perform with Bob Seger — were pretty sweet.
Muskogee musicians Colton, 24, and Zach, 28, Swon came in third place Tuesday on the Season 4 finale of the hit reality singing contest. The show's youngest contestant, 16-year-old Texan Danielle Bradbery, a fellow Team Blake contender, won the grand prize of a recording contract. On Wednesday, she signed with Big Machine Label Group, joining the ranks of Taylor Swift, The Band Perry and Season 3 “The Voice” winner Cassadee Pope.
Pop-rocker Michelle Chamuel, representing R&B/hip-hop hit-maker Usher's team, was this season's runner-up.
“I want to say to these girls that I will gladly lose to either one of them, that their hearts are a heart of gold, and that's why. Not just ‘cause they're awesome talents, but because of their hearts,” Colton Swon told the fellow finalists Tuesday during the live finale.
Although Bradbery was the frontrunner, host Carson Daly indicated that all three finalists had won their share of hearts.
“We had unprecedented voting, and on iTunes, every single one of our finalists hit the top 10 on the singles chart. In fact, more than half the songs on the top 10 are occupied by our finalists. That's a first in this show's history,” Daly said Tuesday.
The Swon Brothers weren't the first duo in the popular reality show's run, but they were the first pair to reach the live playoffs, much less the finals.
“Whether they come out as the winner of ‘The Voice' in their eyes and in our eyes, they've already beat all the odds and won,” said their father, Kelly Swon, by phone last week. “They've represented themselves and Oklahoma well.”
For Shelton, an Ada native and Tishomingo resident, Bradbery's victory marked his third straight win as a coach on “The Voice,” following his successful mentorship of Pope and Jermaine Paul.
“Man, I don't give a crap honestly about a three-peat. I don't,” Shelton said Tuesday, which was his 37th birthday.” It's about this year, and that's all I'm focused on. I think that Danielle and The Swon Brothers have done their work, and you know what, so has Michelle. I mean, everybody at this point in the competition has done everything they need to do and they should be commended.”
In an interview last week, Colton Swon said Shelton also should be commended for the care he has for his singers. Past Team Blake contenders Dia Frampton and Gwen Sebastian have toured with the superstar.
“That just goes to show you he's working after the fact, too, and he cares about people. He really does. Not that the other coaches don't, but there's just something about Blake Shelton that he wants to be invested and what you see is what you get,” Colton said by phone from Los Angeles.
Although they didn't win the singing contest, the brothers said they think they show has provided a great showcase for their talents.
“Right now, I'll go ahead and say this: It's looking pretty good, either outcome for us,” Colton said last Friday. “We're getting a lot of interest from a lot of people, and I think the Top 3 is set no matter who wins.”
On Tuesday, the Swon siblings' time on “The Voice” got even more special. Seger joined the duo in performing his 1976 ballad “Night Moves”; earlier in the season, the brothers scored an iTunes hit with the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer's road anthem “Turn the Page.”
Plus, the Top 3 were surprised with new Kia automobiles in a segment on Tuesday's finale.
“The first thing we're doing is getting on the road. You know, we're playing Swoncerts all across America, so this is gonna get us there,” Colton said.
Kelly Swon, who was featured with their mother Tammy on Monday's “The Voice,” said last week he wasn't sure where his sons would go next, but their next stop might be Music City USA.
“They only thing they've really expressed to me is they think this will be their launching pad to go ahead and move to Nashville, but whether they do or not, I couldn't tell you,” he said. “Since they were probably 11 and 14 ... they've said they would be in Nashville someday, and they've never backed up from it.”