Kipp - Chris Comment on Mark's Appearance on "The Voice"
My cousin and bandmate, Marky was on "The Voice" last night. Of course, a lot of you know that already. Anyway, I just want to say I'm so proud of him for giving it a shot and doing the best he could with what they gave him. I'm so often frustrated by the way show-biz works (or doesn't) on these kinds of shows, and this was SO excruciating to watch. He made it all the way through the audition process by wow-ing the casting people/producers with his ballads, soulful voice, friendly vibe and story, and yet when it came time to do the actual show, they made him do a song of THEIR choosing! It's like a guy making it all the way through Little League, High School, college, the minor leagues and finally making it to the MLB as a pitcher and somebody says, "OK, kid, here's your shot at the big leagues but the team just decided you're going to try out as a catcher instead of a pitcher." WHAT?!
"Come Together" is, of course, a classic, genius song FOR THE BEATLES, but not at all the kind of song that would have given Marky the chance to blow the doors off the place. He so deserved at least that opportunity to show his best soulful stuff. Heartbreaking. Yeah, these "coaches" have all had monster hits and definitely know a thing or two about writing and recording contemporary hit records, but that's not the same thing as being able to stand and deliver a song with grace, power and execution the way Marky does night after night, LIVE over the last thirty years. Carson Daly was very nice to talk about our band so much and he's a genuinely good fella, so we are thankful for that. A really nice guy. Life is long, Mark, and we never know what's just around the bend. You are no less a great singer because 4 "expert" people didn't turn their chairs around for a song you never should have been given. You've handled all of this with class and humor. Our parents would be proud. Onward and upward, pal. Love you.
Late last night we watched "The Voice" as Mark Lennon, a guy I've been in the band Venice with for many years, competed in the blind auditions. Though I knew the outcome way ahead of time, I was still so psyched to see him step out on his own and take his shot.
Now - putting aside the fact that I'm grateful to have known Mark (and all the Lennons) for years and really love the whole family, AND taking into consideration that after a life spent working with literally some of the best singers in pop music, I'm probably the most blunt, jaded, un-loyal, and unforgiving person there is when it comes to discussing "talent", I just have to say this...
Mark Lennon is probably one of the 3 best singers I have ever worked with in my life.
I've played countless shows with him in the United States and Europe, and had him sing on hundreds of sessions, and I swear I have never seen or heard anyone be so consistent; pitch, groove, performance, delivery, and emotion.
I can't even count how many times we've done shows and there's some song we've played eleventy-billion times (which I am dreading even HEARING again let alone playing) and Mark sings it like it's the first time; with passion, emotion, and incredible delivery I didn't think possible.
I've had him sing on commercials, film scores, and songs and I shake my head every time at how good his vocal sounds - whether lead or bg he never phones it in.
Why he wasn't picked by one of the "coaches" (and I use that word very loosely) could be many reasons, but remember this;
"The Voice" isn't music - it's entertainment.
And like the real music world, it's not a talent contest. If it were, there would be a very different group of people both on the show and the Billboard Hot 100.
I suppose it's better in the long run for me personally, because if I had to watch one of those four "teach" him about singing, I may have had a seizure. They may be successful artists, but when it comes to sheer singing talent? Puleeeze. But I digress...
Congrats, Marky, on stepping up and bringing your best once again. Maybe next time they'll let YOU pick the song!
Love you buddy - see you at the next soundcheck ;-)
That is all - carry on...