Even before he took the stage to perform on “The Voice” on Monday night, Nick Mrozinski enjoyed a couple unbeatable moments. First, the Twin Cities-reared contestant known to the rest of the world as Nicholas David shared the news that his wife back home is pregnant with their third child, due in February. Then he was paid a visit during the pre-recorded coaching session by none other than soul/R&B legend Bill Withers, whose classic “Lean on Me” was powerfully rendered by Mrozinski a week earlier (and who doesn’t make a lot of public appearances nowadays).
"To think that [my performance] moved him enough to show up... holy buckets!" said a clearly floored Nick. As for Withers, he surmised to coach Cee-Lo Green of the younger singer: “He ain’t no joke.”
There was only a brief moment of joking following Mrozinski's live performance, in which he tackled one of the holiest of R&B songs, Marvin Gaye's "What's Going On?" After singing in Willie Nelson-esque braids and thick, Ray Charles-style sunglasses that completely shut out his eyes, Nick earned this playful jab from Blake Shelton: "I feel like I learn something new from you every week. Like this week, I didn’t know that you were blind."
The country star quickly turned serious, though: "I crack jokes about you because that’s all I have," he said. "Thank you for letting 'The Voice' be the stage that introduces you to the world." Adam Levine also gave him high praise: "I’m just going to be a fan of yours forever." Cee-Lo gave the most dramatic feedback of all, talking about how Gaye's Vietnam War-era anthem newly reflects the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy and other recent turmoil. Said the "Crazy" singer, "There’s some really serious things going on out there. What would life be like without music that can offer a healing property? We could use more of that. America, vote for this man. We need him."
Nick will find out just how much he's needed in tonight's results episode. Voting info is here on "The Voice" website. His recording of "What's Going On?" is also now available via iTunes.