Maroon 5 Guitarist Discusses the Pros & Cons of Having Your Singer Judge a Reality Show
A few months ago, Ryan Tedder of OneRepublic said that he’d be open to taking a job as a judge on a reality show, either in the U.S. or abroad. When asked how he felt about that idea, guitarist Zach Filkins joked that he’d call Maroon 5 and ask them how they should feel about it, since they know better than anyone what it’s like to have your lead singer judge a reality show. Well, Maroon 5 guitarist James Valentine has a message for OneRepublic: you’d be crazy not to let Ryan do it.
Asked to give OneRepublic advice on the matter, James said, “Well, let’s just look at what’s happened since Adam Levine joined The Voice. We’ve had four consecutive number-one singles. I’d say you should feel pretty good about it!”
They may feel good now, but James explains that at the beginning, the band wasn’t 100% behind the concept of Adam joining The Voice. However, the evidence since has been overwhelming: Adam’s appearance on the singing competition has been a lifesaver for the band, career-wise.
“We didn’t know what was gonna happen. We thought, ‘Wow, this could be horrible for the band, this is incredibly corny,’” recalls James. “And it’s turned out to be great…it’s introduced many people to Maroon 5. It’s connected the dots for a lot of people who might have been familiar with the music but not known about us as artists…it’s brought a lot of people out to the shows.”
Most importantly, James says, “It’s given us a second life, and bands don’t usually get that.”
The way James sees it, there are really only two drawbacks to Adam’s involvement in The Voice. One: it’s hard to get time with him because when the show is on, he’s super-busy. And two: it’s turned Adam, a serial model-dater, into a tabloid magnet, with a constant stream of stories about him and his love life.
“That’s always kind of been the thing, ever since he became a sex symbol,” James says of the gossip about Adam. “I’ve always hoped that through all that, people remember that we’re out here to play music. And I would love for the focus to be about that.”
“But you know,” James laughs, “when you’ve got those movie star looks like Adam does, people are going to want to know more than about the songs that you write.