The Voice Season 17 moved right along Tuesday night (Oct. 22) continuing with the season's Battle Rounds, which features contestants going head-to-head and also receiving instruction from special guest star mentors as well as coaches Blake SheltonKelly Clarkson, Gwen Stefani and John Legend.

The night included one standout country battle in which Shelton was forced to choose between Mississippi-based X-ray tech Zach Bridges and Arkansas native Cory Jackson, who grew up on a cattle farm and wants nothing more than to please his newlywed wife with success on the show. Shelton himself foreshadowed this would be a close competition, referring to the singers as "my two straight-ahead, hard-core country music artists."

Shelton didn't make it easy on the pair, giving them Toby Keith's "Should've Been a Cowboy" to tackle. "I want to know which one of these artists can really make me believe that they wish they were a cowboy, that they can take me back into that time and make me feel passionate about what they're saying," he explained. 

Both singers rose to the occasion, causing a delighted Clarkson to jump up from the first notes. Y'all should be a duo! I wish there was a duo button!" she hollered, at the end of the performance. Legend agreed both vocalists were doing the song proud.

Stefani, as Shelton's well-known partner, was a bit more judicious. "Because I know Blake so well, I've learned so much about country music in the last few years. But I don't know, you know, like, what you're thinking," she noted, addressing Shelton. " I don't know what I'm thinking right now either," she added, but ultimately gave her vote to Jackson. 

As always, the final decision came down to the coach. Shelton admitted "Kelly was right, when she says there's really not a winner here," then praised Bridges' baritone range and Jackson's pitch before ultimately going for Bridges. "I feel like Zach's got that deeper voice that we don't hear a lot on 'The Voice,'" Shelton explained. 

 Jackson was not saved or stolen, so unfortunately will be heading home.

We'll be following along each week to keep up with the Season 17 competition, so be sure to check in weekly to check the progress of your favorites on the show.

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