Latino hunk Ricky Martin is more like a hotel concierge than a mentor with his “I’m here to help” approach on The Voice.
Martin has already gone beyond his call of duty on the Nine Network series by assisting several of the singers he tutored last year with support gigs.
He took runner-up Luke Kennedy and semi-finalist Miss Murphy on his Australian tour and he even had battle round survivor Caterina Torres accompany him on a tour to Chile.
Then there’s the feel-good story of Mark Stefanoff who belted out an emotional rendition of This Is The Moment, from the musical Jekyll & Hyde, for his blind audition.
None of the judges turned around for the then 21-year-old but Martin, after hearing Stefanoff sing, offered to help him get to Broadway.
Martin has been true to his word.
Stefanoff posted on his Facebook in February that he was in New York trying to impress casting directors with his talents and at the same time thanked Martin for his help.
“I have already introduced him (Stefanoff) to my agents,” Martin told AAP during a set visit to the blind auditions in Sydney.
“I appreciate talent and when you find people with hunger and they are incredibly talented, I think `how can I help and be of service?’.
“Isn’t that what life is about?”
Martin and fellow mentor Good Charlotte frontman Joel Madden have a couple new sidekicks this year.
Aussie pop queen Kylie Minogue and the extremely talented and mildly eccentric Will.i.am, from the Black Eyed Peas replace Delta Goodrem and Seal as mentors.
The quartet at times bemused the audience when they collectively refused to spin their chairs during the blind auditions for some very competent artists.
Martin said it’s nothing personal and there was a lot of strategy behind their recruiting.
It pained him to see certain singers overlooked purely on the basis of a mentor’s requirement and not solely on merit.
“I don’t want to sound arrogant, but there is an enormous responsibility and you are almost playing God a little bit,” Martin said.
“You have four coaches who are strategising about what they need for their team to go to the next level and sometimes I hear a fantastic voice but I already have someone very similar.
“I’m thinking guys, come on, I already have someone like this please spin around, because I am now looking for `B and C’.”
But it’s not always about the quality of the voice. It’s also how the song is interpreted, says Martin.
“Some people sing the lyrics and some perform the lyrics and there is a thin line between these two images.”
Martin said he was “not just saying it” when praised The Voice for being the most reputable talent show on TV.
He said the quality of the entrants this year surpassed his expectations but that was because established singers have seen the benefits and acknowledge the `street cred’ of the series.
“They’re (established singers) realising that they’re not too cool for The Voice because The Voice is really cool and it gives you a really credible and sensitive exposure,” Martin said.
“It is a fantastic platform to restart your career or reinforce your career and there are four coaches giving the artists their knowledge and experiences for free.
“The concept is fantastic.”
* The Voice (season three) returns on Sunday, May 4 at 6.30pm on the Nine Network