Television

Interview: Danny Jones on the return of The Voice Kids

The show for the freshest new singing talent is back this summer when The Voice Kids returns for a new series in July. Original Voice Kids star Coaches will.i.am, Pixie Lott and reigning champion Danny Jones are all back and there’s a brand-new Coach in town as Brit award-winning popstar Paloma Faith joins the panel.

Emma Willis is back to host the show and cheer on singers from the wings as she joins with the hopefuls’ friends and families. Each coach has nine places on their teams to fill as they head into the Blind Auditions searching for the next generation of singing talent. The competition is open to solo singers and double acts, aged seven to 14, who will take to the stage and sing in the hope of turning those chairs. After each performance, regardless of whether they’ve won a place with will, Danny, Pixie or Paloma, all four Coaches will turn to give the singers words of advice and encouragement.

For those who graduate to the next round that means it’s time for the Battles as the teams sing off for a place in the semi-final. There are no steals for the coaches in this competition so the youngsters will be going all out to make sure they’re one of just three acts their Coach will put through to the semi-final stage.

At the semi-final, those singers will be singing to impress their Coaches for one last time as each Coach selects just one act per team to make it to the final.

The final four will perform in the final in the hope of winning the competition and the ultimate prize of a £30,000 bursary towards their musical education, as well as a VIP trip to Universal studios, Orlando.

McFly’s Danny Jones tells us more…

How does it feel to be back as the reigning winner?


As the champ?! Well, it’s kinda sunk in now. It’s taken a year to sink in! It feels amazing. The only way I can describe it is when you don’t win something you want to change something. When you win something you just believe in what you’re doing. You just believe in it more. In my head I’m thinking is my taste just something that isn’t right for the viewers? And suddenly I’m like hold on a second…

What are you looking for this year?


I think this year has made me open up a little bit. I’m opening my door to other artists because I’ve won with a guitarist now. At the same time I still gravitate towards that massively because I believe in it and I know I can do my best work on that. I’ve got a good variety this year. In my head if it’s good and it’s good enough to not let go then I’ll turn for
them because they deserve a place. There’s so many times that I’ve regretted over the years when someone has or hasn’t gone through and this time I’m just listening to my gut.

What can you tell us about your team this year?


It’s a real good quality variety – from opera to big rock to my first duo. I’ve got a bit of everything which is exciting and gives me a challenge when I’m putting them into Battles. It gives me a challenge working with something new and different and going out of my comfort zone so I like that. I always say try and push yourself every time so to have opera, as well as rock, a duo and a soul singer that I’ve never had before – it’s amazing.

Some of these kids will get a huge opportunity to duet with you. Who would you have liked to duet with at their age or do you have a dream duet now?


This is difficult because everyone knows I’m going to say Springsteen BUT, to look at the present day, I’d just like to do a tune with will.i.am just because it’s so different. I like performing with him. I feel like we could do some cool shows together. So, obviously Springsteen as a kid but now it would be will.

So, finally, who’s going to win?


I have to admit, and I say this every year, that every kid is amazing. That’s what makes this show so different. If all the kids in the final were the same it would be boring. I couldn’t call it. Obviously, I’d love one of my team to win. I feel like it would be really good for any one of them. There are kids that can really start something here and begin that belief and that’s the difference. When Sam won this last year, he hadn’t believed in himself and it kicked off his belief and his hunger to go out there in the industry. That’s what I find so impactful about this show. They don’t win it and think I’m going to be the biggest star ever. It’s
about winning it and starting off that belief. You’ve got that something, that desire, that sense of I know what I’m doing and I’m doing the right thing and I’ve got belief in myself now so here we go! I think that any of my team, if they won it, that’s what it would solidify for them.

The Voice Kids airs on itv, Saturdays at 7.25pm from 11 July.