Why The Voice hasn't produced a star

BOY George claims it's the current state of the music industry rather than The Voice Australia when it comes to explaining why previous winners have struggled to hit the big time.

While the Channel 9 reality singing series hasn't been without its success stories, the winners of the past five seasons - Karise Eden, Harrison Craig, Anja Nissen, Ellie Drennan and Alfie Arcuri - haven't enjoyed lasting fame in line with their public popularity on the show.

Speaking to Confidential, the Culture Club star said society doesn't embrace enough new music.

"The difference between a hit and a non-hit is repetition - if you hear something on the radio over and over and over it sticks to your cranium," he said.

"We live in an age where with, hit records, you hear the same thing over and over and it's like Chinese torture, it's like 'for God's sake I don't need to hear this again'. Not just in Australia but around the world. There's so much stuff that doesn't get space on the shelf and that's because we live in the age of formula."

The Voice coach Boy George.
The Voice coach Boy George. Supplied - Nine

George, who has also coached on the UK version of the show, said he tells his contestants to think long-term.

"What I say is 'don't think about winning the show, think about winning in life and think about winning beyond this because this is a moment'," he said.

"I say 'so let's concentrate on creating a beautiful musical moment and I will give you advice on how you go on from here because one person is going to win and there are four coaches and a lot of competition so the odds are against you'.

"But if you're born to do this nothing is going to stop you."

However, he admits the career The Voice hopefuls can expect now will be "very different" to the one he enjoyed in the '80s.

"It was more simple then - we made a record, went to radio, toured and the songs had a longer shelf life," he said.

"It's very much more brutal now and it's not just about music now because we live in the age of the brand. There are a lot of artists that have built entire careers out of one hit and have gone on to do other things that don't necessarily have anything to do with music and this is the age we live in. The odd thing about that is that somebody really, really talented can fall to the wayside and somebody that has a lot of tenacity and not a lot of talent (can go far). -This is the irony of current pop culture but that also keeps things exciting - you've got to embrace changes."

The legendary British singer, who hasn't been afraid to exchange words with fellow coaches Seal, Kelly Rowland and Delta Goodrem, also spoke to Confidential about butting heads on the show.

"The banter is part of it but actually when you sit in that chair, it doesn't matter who is there, you never know who you're going to clash with," he said.

"People are going to say things that you absolutely, 100 per cent disagree with and your job is to say 'no, I disagree, I think you're wrong' and sometimes people don't like that and that's just the way it goes," he said.

"This is a TV show - we're not hired to sit there with our arms folded, we're there to bring our personalities to that red chair and say what we think. In my case, I just can't help it.

The Voice continues tonight on Channel 9.

Originally published as Why The Voice hasn't produced a star