Cole has been working in Nashville for years, working mostly as a songwriter. It was what he was doing when he decided to try out for the show.
Cole tried out by singing a soulful, bluesy version of the theme song to the classic TV sitcom The Jeffersons. It caught the attention of Cee Lo Green, who ended up being the only coach to turn around for him.
In this part of the competition, Cole went up against Lupe Carroll on the Toto classic "Africa". Impressed by his strong vocals, Cee Lo opted to keep him on the show.
In this part of the show, Cole went up against Jonny Gray, singing the Passenger hit "Let Her Go". However, Jonny beat him. Thanks to the steal being in place during this part of the competition, Blake Shelton used it on Cole, making him a member of Team Blake.
When Cole reached this part of the show, he thrived, taking on songs such as "To Be with You" by Mr. Big to "Rich Girl" by Hall & Oates to the Garth Brooks version of the Billy Joel song "Shameless". During his time on the show, six of the songs he did charted on the Billboard charts with his highest-charting song being his version of Passenger's "Let Her Go", which hit number 15 on the Billboard Hot Rock Songs chart.
However, critics did worry that Cole would go country due to him having Blake Shelton as his mentor. His decision to sing "Shameless", which had been a number 1 hit for Garth Brooks in 1991, seemed to confirm that fear despite Cole's version hitting number 29 on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart.
Despite a strong fanbase and some great performances, Cole was eliminated on December 9, 2013, finishing in 4th place. He was the last member of Team Blake to be eliminated.