As the premiere of The Voice Season 6 approaches, we already knew that Cee Lo Green wouldn’t be in his chair—he and Christina Aguilera have been rotating seasons with Shakira and Usher for the past couple of years. What we didn’t know until this week is that Cee Lo isn’t planning to return at all, making him the first coach on the successful talent show to abdicate officially.
The “Forget You” singer first let this slip during an appearance Wednesday on Ellen, sitting alongside Lionel Richie, with whom he plans to tour this summer.
I don’t want to wear out my welcome there,” Green explained. “I have so many other things that I want to do. I haven’t released an album in four years. I’m almost done with my album.” Cee Lo went on to say that he maintains an amicable relationship with NBC and plans to work on new show development with the network.
“The Voice has been an immensely enjoyable experience for me,” he said in the statement. “I can only hope I have enriched the lives of our viewers, the contestants, and the many friends I made there.”
Paul Telegdy, NBC’s president of alternative and late-night programming, followed up with a statement of his own: “Cee Lo Green has been an instrumental part of the success of The Voice, and we deeply appreciate all his contributions. We’re looking forward to working with him on other upcoming projects that will tap into both his musical and entertainment expertise.”
One item glaringly absent from the conversation this week has been the felony charge Cee Lo Green still faces for allegedly furnishing ecstasy to a woman during an encounter last year, after which the woman claimed he sexually assaulted her. The sexual assault charges were dropped; the ecstasy charge is still in process. Whether the case also plays a role in Cee Lo’s departure from The Voice is a matter of speculation.
The Voice Season 6 premiers Monday, February 24, on NBC. Watch Cee Lo’s appearance on Ellen below.