George Strait Congratulates Blake Shelton On A ‘Successful Run’ As ‘The Voice’ Judge: ‘You really Stole The Show’

“That’s the true king of country right there,” Shelton said of his musical hero.

By

Lauren Jo Black

| Posted on

May 23, 2023

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George Strait surprised Blake Shelton with a special heartfelt message during his final night as a coach on NBC’s The Voice.

Following an all-star performance from former Team Blake members, The Voice host Carson Daly asked Shelton to turn his attention to a special video message from Strait.

“If we can get your attention one more time, we can do it with the gang right there all on stage… Blake we’d love for you to take a look at the monitor. There’s just one more special person who wanted to say something to you. Blake have a look, here it is…” Daly said as Shelton turned to watch.

Strait appeared on the screen with a heartfelt message for Shelton.

“Hey Blake, just wanted to say congratulations on the successful run you had at The Voice. You really stole the show man, you really did. So, congratulations on that and I wish you the best of luck on whatever you decide to do next. I’m sure you’ll do great on whatever it is and I’ll see you  out there on the road sometime,” Strait said in the brief but meaningful clip.

“That’s the true king of country right there,” Shelton said as Strait’s video message ended.

Earlier this year, Shelton revealed that he wanted to take a page out of George Strait’s book when it comes to touring after his departure from The Voice.

After announcing his departure from NBC’s The Voice, Shelton planned to embrace his newfound freedom, however, he quickly realized that his other projects, like Barmageddon and the ongoing expansion of Ole Red, are occupying quite a bit of his time.

“I thought I was getting away from The Voice so that I would have more free time, but you’re making me feel like maybe not,” he said during a Q&A session at the groundbreaking of Ole Red in Las Vegas.

At the time, Shelton also said that he may soon be modeling his touring plans after those of his musical hero, George Strait.

“George Strait is my hero on lots of different levels, one of which is how little he tours. And it’s like, I want to do everything like George Strait,” he said.

Strait officially announced his retirement from touring in 2012 and later embarked on his final major tour, The Cowboy Rides Away Tour. Since then, the country music icon has been performing a select number of shows in Las Vegas as well as a handful of yearly stadium concerts. In 2023, Strait will play less than 10 shows.

“I would say that I’m working at just the right pace for me,” Strait previously told Pollstar. “I think I’ll do eight shows [in 2023]. That’s about perfect. I’ll have plenty of time off and still be able to scratch that itch that I have for live shows.”

George Strait; Photo by Getty Images for CMT
George Strait; Photo by Getty Images for CMT

While Shelton may’ve hinted at scaling back his touring schedule, fans may soon have additional opportunities to see him live as he recently teased that he’s toying with the idea of a Las Vegas Residency.

During an interview with the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Shelton said that he is contemplating the idea of a Sin City residency after being “blown away” by his wife Gwen Stefani’s “Just a Girl” show at Zappos Theater.

“I probably saw [Gwen’s Las Vegas residency] 12 or 13 times, up in the loft, and I was blown away every time,” Shelton said.

Shelton was then asked if he will use his existing partnership with Caesars Entertainment as a “stepping stone” to launch his own residency or a collaborative one between him and his wife, Stefani.

“That’s probably a good way to put it, a stepping stone,” he shared. “I mean, it’s not until now that I’ve ever even thought, ‘Maybe I can do a ​​Vegas residency.’ I don’t want to mislead you and say that something’s on the table, but it’s on the radar.”

Blake Shelton; Photo by: Tyler Golden/NBC
Blake Shelton; Photo by: Tyler Golden/NBC

After witnessing several Las Vegas residencies, including Stefani’s residency over a dozen times, Shelton may’ve found inspiration for his own.

“A lot of my friends are doing these things, and knowing the inside and outside of Gwen’s show, I’m thinking, if there’s a way that I could do it, I would have a blast. So I’m definitely starting to think about it now. I’ve had a lot of thoughts over my career that never became anything, but this makes all the sense in the world,” he explained.

In the fall of 2022, the “No Body” singer announced that he would be leaving the Emmy-winning singing competition show. 

“I’ve been wrestling with this for a while, and I’ve decided that it’s time for me to step away from The Voice after Season 23,” Shelton previously shared in a statement. “This show has changed my life in every way for the better, and it will always feel like home to me. It’s been a hell of a ride over these 12 years of chair turns, and I want to thank everyone at The Voice from NBC, every producer, the writers, musicians, crew, and catering people; you are the best.”

Ahead of the season finale, Shelton took to social media to bid farewell and say goodbye.

“Can’t believe it’s been 23 seasons of @nbcthevoice… and especially can’t believe today is my final episode. It’s bittersweet. When we signed up for season 1, I don’t think any of us knew what this was going to be… These past 12 years I have made lifelong friends and memories,” Shelton wrote in the caption. 

He continued, “I’ve had the great opportunity to coach some really talented artists, 9 who have taken home #TeamBlake wins (let’s make that 10 tonight?), and watch these artists grow so much from the show. Thank you to everyone… the crew, the coaches, the contestants, the fans, and my wife who have made these some really great years. Love y’all!!!!!!”

The two-hour season finale also featured performances from Maroon 5, Toosi, CeeLo Green, as well as Diplo featuring Lily Rose, and more.

In addition, Blake Shelton joined forces with NOIVAS and Grace West, while Kelly Clarkson took to The Voice stage with D. Smooth. Niall Horan performed alongside Gina Miles and Chance The Rapper harmonized with the trio, Sorelle.

The show also included special appearances from John Legend, Gwen Stefani, Camila Cabello, Jennifer Hudson, Nick Jonas, Usher, Pharrell Williams and Dolly Parton.

It was surely an emotional evening as the show marked Blake Shelton final show as a coach on The Voice.
The Voice aired on Tuesday (May 23) at 9/8c via NBC.

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Lauren Jo Black

Written by

Lauren Jo Black

Lauren Jo Black, a University of Central Florida graduate, has immersed herself in the world of country music for over 15 years. In 2008, she co-founded CountryMusicIsLove, eventually selling it to a major record label in 2015. Following the rebranding of the website to Sounds Like Nashville, Black served as Editor-in-Chief for two and a half years. Currently, she assumes the role of Editor-in-Chief at Country Now and oversees Country Now’s content and digital footprint. Her extensive experience also encompasses her previous role as a Country Music Expert Writer for Answers.com and her work being featured on Forbes.com. She’s been spotlighted among Country Aircheck’s Women of Influence and received the 2012 Rising Star Award from the University of Central Florida. Black also spent time in front of the camera as host of Country Now Live, which brought live music directly to fans in 2021 when the majority of concerts were halted due to the pandemic. During this time, she hosted 24 weeks of live concerts via Country Now Live on Twitch with special guests such as Lady A, Dierks Bentley, Jordan Davis, Brett Young, and Jon Pardi. Over the course of her career, she has had the privilege of conducting interviews with some of the industry’s most prominent stars, including Reba McEntire, Blake Shelton, Luke Combs, Carrie Underwood, Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert, Lainey Wilson, and many others. Lauren Jo Black is a longtime member of the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music.