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Carson Daly catches up with 'The Voice' coaches ahead of season 21 premiere

The veteran coaches open up about new addition Ariana Grande and look ahead to a series milestone.
/ Source: TODAY

Season 21 of “The Voice” is just days away, which means fans of the TV talent show will soon have a whole new group of contestants to celebrate — and a new coach, too.

But what will series newbie Ariana Grande bring to the mix? That’s just one of the topics “The Voice” host and TODAY’s own Carson Daly asked about when he sat down with Grande and returning coaches Blake Shelton, John Legend and Kelly Clarkson. It seems the answer is big emotions!

The Voice - Season 21
Kelly Clarkson, John Legend, Ariana Grande and Blake Shelton gear up for season 21 of "The Voice."Trae Patton / NBC

“I'm very well aware of how I can get,” the “God Is a Woman” singer said, explaining how her feelings have been stirred up on set so far. “I'm very quick to form certain relationships with people and care very quickly. So I was expecting it to be somewhat difficult but not as difficult as it actually has been. It's pretty tough. But everyone's amazing, and it's been beautiful to meet so many amazing artists.”

Grande's been able to bond with her fellow coaches, including Shelton, who has a reputation for giving newcomers a playfully tough time. But Grande may have figured out a way to avoid that by teaming up with him to tease another person on the panel.

“Oh, that's when they're making fun of me,” Clarkson said.

Shelton nodded along, stating, “Our bond has been that we both make fun of Kelly.”

In spite of the teasing, Clarkson is still a fan of Grande's sense of humor. "I'm going to be real with y'all, she's funny on camera but 100 times funnier behind the scenes," the "American Idol" alum gushed.

"None of my jokes can make it to air," Grande replied. "It's worth it to make them laugh."

In response, Carson joked the show had to double its budget to "bleep" words on air.

But on a more serious note, Clarkson couldn’t be happier to have to have the 28-year-old join because of all she brings to the show.

“Well, the obvious is her voice. She's got this incredible talent with not just her tone but her range,” Clarkson raved. “Then also experience. She's been doing it forever, since she was a kid. That's an amazing amount of experience to be able to bestow upon your artists that you're working with.”

Turns out Legend is quite the Grande fan, too.

“Let's talk about her like she's not here,” he joked. “I'm a huge fan of Ariana. My whole family are huge fans. I can sing along to pretty much any song of hers. I'm a super fan. So having her here on the show, knowing what kind of audience she brings to the show, knowing how much people love her out in the world, it's going to be so great for ‘The Voice.’”

It's also great timing for Grande. She’s joining the show ahead of a tremendous milestone. This season, “The Voice” will air its 500th episode, which, as Carson noted, is “rarefied" air for any series, putting it on par with television powerhouses like “Law & Order.”

And only two people have been there since the early days: Carson and founding coach Shelton.

“When you look back on the show, how do you think we've gotten better through the years?” Carson asked.

“Well, first of all, when you look at pictures of me and you, we haven't gotten better,” Shelton quipped. But in a moment of seriousness, he added: “At the end of the day, I think people still keep coming back because it's artists working with artists and we're not judging people. We're just trying to help them be the best they can be.”

Season 21 of “The Voice” premieres Monday, Sept. 20, at 8 p.m. ET on NBC.