Reba McEntire Says Being On ‘The Voice’ Is Harder Than She Expected

Reba McEntire will begin her inaugural season as a coach on  The Voice on Monday, September 25. The Country Music Hall of Fame member, who is taking the space left open when Blake Shelton left the show, will be joined by Gwen Stefani, John Legend and Niall Horan for Season 24.

In a new promo video ahead of this season’s premiere of The Voice, McEntire admits that being in the famous red swivel chairs isn’t as easy as she thought it would be.

‘The Blind Auditions are so much harder than I thought they were gonna be,” admits the singer. “They block you, and it’s just so devious, but a lot of fun too. Everybody’s just as sweet as kind off-stage as they can be. When they come on the stage though, they kind of change their personality.

“They’re real mean. Especially Gwen,” she jokes.

McEntire admitted it was a bit overwhelming to take over for Shelton, who had been with The Voice since it began.

“The country lane — I’m taking over for Blake so I’m gonna represent country music,” McEntire tells People. “[He’s got] big boots. I don’t know what size those boots are, but they’re big, so I’m gonna really work hard to make him proud.”

McEntire was eager to take her turn as a coach from the moment the news as announced, especially considering the people she got to work alongside with.

“John and Niall [are] all really funny and clever, and always have so many smart things to say, so I’ve got my work cut out for me,”  McEntire admits. “I’m most excited about basically getting started, and I’m sure that I’ll have lots of help, lots of advice, lots of people coming around saying, ‘You can do this. You can do that.’ And I’m not afraid at all. I think it’ll be a very fun adventure.”

McEntire was first asked to join the cast of The Voice before the show even began. She turned it down at the time, a decision she admitted she later regretted.

“It was a very popular show in Holland, I’m pretty sure,” McEntire told Andy Cohen on Watch What Happens Live. “I watched the tape and I said ‘No, I’m going to pass on that, because I don’t think I’d ever be able to tell somebody that they’re terrible, or ‘Go find another job’ or ‘Hope you like your nighttime job.’ I couldn’t do that, day in and day out. I just couldn’t do it. So I did pass on it. Blake was the perfect choice. He’s done a wonderful job.”

The “Fancy” singer’s episodes for this season of The Voice may not have aired yet, but she’s already looking ahead to next season. McEntire will return for Season 25 in 2024 as well, joined by Legend, Chance the Rapper, and  Dan + Shay, who will mark the first time The Voice uses a double chair.

Season 24 of The Voice will premiere on September 25 and 26 at 8:00 PM ET on NBC.