Australian rock legend Ross Wilson says contestants on reality singing show The Voice “smack of desperation” and need more live performance experience. The Daddy Cool frontman says this lack of industry experience creates performers who have little to offer besides their singing abilities.
“A lot of them have got great voices, and they can sing, but they can’t do much else,” Wilson, who also fronts the long-running group Mondo Rock, told News Limited. “I’m not as good a singer as a lot of those people, but there are a lot of things, as a musician and a songwriter, I can do as well.”
“Sometimes it smacks of desperation,” he continued. “You go: Well, can’t you just go out and do some gigs? Get some experience?” He said he watched the show’s blind auditions, but “after that, I switched off.” He admitted being “impressed by some of the singers,” but said he holds live performance in higher esteem. “To me, getting out there and doing live shows is where it’s at.”
Wilson isn’t the first Aussie rock figure to hit out at the show, with Grinspoon’s Phil Jamieson telling Triple M, “Kylie Minogue telling people how to sing live is a little like me coaching the South Sydney Rabbitohs. It’s a good idea but we’ve really got no experience in it whatsoever.”
Meanwhile, Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl told Sky magazine back in March 2013 that reality singing shows are “destroying the next generation of musicians.” Grohl asserted that it’s detrimental for kids to grow up thinking they can only become musicians if they audition for a reality show.
Watch: Dave Grohl South By Southwest (SXSW) 2013 Keynote Speech