Christina Aguilera is putting The Voice behind her.
Along with CeeLo Green, Adam Levine and Blake Shelton, Aguilera was one of the reality competition's original coaches. She returned for Seasons 2, 3, 5, 8, 10, allowing other artists—like Miley Cyrus, Kelly Clarkson, Jennifer Hudson, Alicia Keys, Shakira and Gwen Stefani—to sub in. In the May 5 issue of Billboard, Aguilera says she's done with NBC's ratings juggernaut. Doing the show was an "energy sucker," she says, comparing it to a "churning hamster wheel."
"I was longing for freedom," she adds. When she'd leave the set from 2011 to 2016, she tells the magazine, "I would just take everything off—the makeup, all of it—and would blast hip-hop, or Nirvana, 'Creep,' Slayer. Anything like that to get me out of that zone, that TV mode."
Aguilera says she felt "suffocated and restricted" during that period. "I didn't get into this business to be a television show host and to be given all these [rules]. Especially as a female: You can't wear this, can't say that. I would find myself on that show desperately trying to express myself through clothing or makeup or hair. It was my only kind of outlet." Over time, Aguilera argues, "It became something that I didn't feel was what I had signed up for in Season 1. You realize it's not about music. It's about making good TV moments and massaging a story."