It’s been a tough journey but Sharaya J, James Graham, Whitney Reign and Leah Jenea have made it to ‘The Four’ finale! Check out our recap to find out who wins season 2!
And then there were four. James Graham, Sharaya J, Whitney Reign, and Leah Jenea, have landed in the finale for The Four‘s second season, but only one of these phenomenal performers will emerge victorious. But before they go up against each other, the four finalists teamed up for one last group performance. James started off the group with their take on Rihanna‘s “Hard.” Whitney followed with the next verse, and then Leah took over before giving way to an epic rap by Sharaya. Final four’s in the building!
Host Fergie followed up by introducing the panel of judges for one last time this season. They are, of course, Meghan Trainor, Diddy, and DJ Khaled. Whoever wins tonight will be guided in their career by these three musical experts. They’ll also be named iHeartRadio’s On The Verge artist and will walk away with a record deal with Republic Records. NBD! Let’s get to it!
All of the finalists will be given a turn to perform, and the audience will vote afterwards to determine who gets to choose who they want to battle in round two. Whitney was the first performer of the night and she definitely seemed to be having a fun time onstage while performing “Lady Marmalade” by Patti LaBelle.
The judges loved the R&B singer’s performance, but Leah is definitely a tough competitor as well. The 17-year-old soul singer stepped up to the mic next and absolutely slayed her rendition of Cindy Lauper‘s “True Colors.” Sharaya followed with a customized version of “Juicy” by The Notorious B.I.G. She expertly swapped the lyrics to fit her journey on the show, referencing the challengers that came along and failed to defeat her.
James was the last finalist to perform in this round, and he went with “Rock With You” by Michael Jackson. He totally brought his A-game for this one! He even strut up to Meghan and sang directly to her as he held her hand before engaging with members of the audience. The judges were split on the performance. Khaled thought it wasn’t the right song and Diddy said he didn’t like it, but Meghan completely disagreed, noting that her favorite songs James has done have all been by MJ.
But the decision is ultimately up to the audience! Once the votes were locked, it was revealed that Sharaya earned the right to choose her challenger in the second round! She decided to go head-to-head against Whitney Reign! This means the second battle will be between James and Leah. The rules have also changed – from here on out, the panel of judges will determine the winner of each battle.
Whitney went first, and put her own spin on Lady Gaga‘s hit song “Million Reasons.” Sharaya went next with another fire freestyle set to Nas‘ track. It even came with a wardrobe change! When it came down to the judges critiques, the panelists thought it wasn’t Whitney’s best performance but thought Sharaya was entertaining. After some deliberation, the judges decided that Sharaya will be moving on to the final battle!
Onto the second battle! Earlier in the season, James lost his seat to Leah, so both of this challenge could really go either way. Leah was up first with an upbeat performance of “Golden” by Jill Scott. The British ex-boy band member then hit the stage with “Hello” by Adele. James started off slow, but then really went for it with that incredible falsetto of his. The judges had nothing but praise for both of the artists. Meghan even admitted that this would be one of the hardest decisions of her life. But only one of them could win this challenge and that person was… James!
Before the final battle between OG members of the four, James and Sharaya, last season’s winner Evvie McKinney hit the stage to debut her brand new single, “How Do You Feel.” So good!
It’s finally time for the final battle of the season! The resident rap queen kicked off the battle with an original rap called “Say Less.” It was, as always, flawless! Even James gave her a standing ovation. He then hit the stage for his last performance, which was a stunning take on Coldplay‘s hit track “Fix You.” Sharaya returned the favor with a standing ovation, which also mimicked the judges reactions.
“You both slayed it,” Meghan said while explaining how difficult it will be to choose between them. When it was Diddy’s turn to speak, he wanted to take a second to talk about Sharaya’s journey on the show and how it happened at the same time that she was battling breast cancer. That’s when she revealed that at her last doctor’s visit, she found out the tumor was gone! It was an emotional moment, with each judge getting up to hug her over the good news.
Sharaya and James have both proved how talented they were this season, but only one can be crowned the winner. The judges have deliberated one last time, and they’ve come to a decision. The winner of The Four season two is… James Graham! We can’t wait to see what’s in store for him as he embarks on his solo career! Congrats, James!