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Singer Eric Church was put on the hot seat this week after slamming NBC’s The Voice in the latest issue of Rolling Stone magazine. Judge Blake Shelton and wife Miranda Lambert, who guest-mentored on the show, immediately criticized Church’s statements. The country singer later issued an apology, clarifying his comments.
"Honestly, if Blake Shelton and Cee Lo Green turn around in a red chair, you got a deal? That’s crazy," he said. "I don’t know what would make an artist do that. You're not an artist."
He later added, "Once your career becomes about something other than the music, then that's what it is. I'll never make that mistake. I don't care if I starve."
Shelton later tweeted a link to the interview, adding, “I wish I misunderstood this...”
Lambert, whose fame rose when she was a finalist on Nashville Star and who toured with Church in 2010, was even more critical of the comments, writing “Thanks Eric Church for saying I'm not a real artist.”
— Miranda Lambert (@Miranda_Lambert) April 30, 2012
Church apologized for his comments in a lengthy statement to the media. He said that the comments were meant as an overall statement on the competition shows and that he has “a lot of respect” for Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood and Lambert.
You can read his full statement below:
“The comment I made to Rolling Stone was part of a larger commentary on these types of reality television shows and the perception they create, not the artists involved with the shows themselves. The shows make it appear that artists can shortcut their way to success. There are a lot of artists due to their own perseverance that have gone on to be successful after appearing on these shows, but the real obstacles come after the cameras stop rolling. Every artist has to follow up television appearances with dedication towards their craft, but these shows tend to gloss over that part and make it seem like you can be ordained into stardom. I have a problem with those perceived shortcuts, not just in the music industry. Many people have come to think they can just wake up and have things handed to them. I have a lot of respect for what artists like Carrie Underwood, Kelly Clarkson, and my friend Miranda Lambert have gone on to accomplish. This piece was never intended to tear down any individual and I apologize to anybody I offended in trying to shed light on this issue. I am grateful for all of the artists and fans that have supported me along my journey and certainly did not mean for my comments to undermine their talent and achievements.”