Suzanne's Soundtrack Sunday

A Tough Act to Follow.

Have you ever had the front man/woman of your favorite band depart for greener pastures? Sure you have! Did you fear whether the replacement would be able to do justice with the original music? Worry that the band would no longer be a favorite?

There's one thing you can be sure of in the music business, and that is: people will leave bands. There is something about those artistic types that is certain. If the creativity isn't happening or their contribution not appreciated, they'll take their party somewhere else.

Sometimes, the replacement is just horrible. Sammy Hagar springs to mind when he joined Van Halen. (Gary Cherone was worse and I have a hard time knocking the man) Each is talented in his own right, they just didn't meld with the rest of Van Halen. Besides, how to you even attempt to follow up a larger than life front man like David Lee Roth?

One of my favorite bands replaced their charismatic front man, Fish. I was biased for a long time, refusing to accept the new guy for his abilities. I'm glad I was finally convinced (by Ed and Merv) to give Steve Hogarth another chance. While I love both incarnations of Marillion, I tend to lean toward's Hogarth's era.

Sometimes, tragedy strikes and you lose the lead. Last year, Brad Delp of Boston killed himself It was a huge loss to the music world and I'd wondered if they'd continue to record and perform as Boston. Brad had a very distinctive voice-would they be able to find someone to fill his shoes?

Ironically, the Internet smiled on the remaining members of Boston. One of their fans in North Carolina sounded just like Brad Delp, and posted recordings he'd made of Boston to his My Space page. To the casual listener, it was Brad they were hearing. To the members of the band, they could tell the nuanced difference in the recording enough to KNOW it wasn't.

Tommy DeCarlo
is a working class guy, a manager at a Home Depot, and sounds EXACTLY like Brad Delp. He also has been a huge fan of the band for years. Now, thanks to My Space, he's their lead singer.

While Brad is a tough front man to follow, IMO, Tommy is helping to heal the hurt left in the wake of Brad's death. I'm hoping the band is healing, too.

So, what about you? What bands that you like changed their lineup? Was it successful?


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