Eric Phillips returns to Mark Trammell Quartet

Ever since Joel Wood left the Mark Trammell Quartet several months ago, more than a few individuals—fans and performers alike—have commented that their dream scenario would be Eric Phillips returning to the road.

Sometimes dreams come true.

Mark Trammell has posted this announcement on his Facebook page: 

After three months of searching, praying, and auditioning. Mark Trammell Quartet is happy to announce that former Mark Trammell TRIO tenor Eric Phillips will rejoin the group at the end of the year.

Eric has faithfully served the city of Gadsden, Alabama as a law enforcement officer for the last 2 years and has earned highest honors in his service to them. Eric states “When music is in your blood, it’s hard to get it out. I’m looking forward to getting back on the road with Mark and the guys, seeing friends I haven’t seen in two and a half years and most importantly encouraging people with the gospel message thru song!”

Mark states: “I couldn’t be happier with Eric‘s decision to return. He loved being a police officer and I admired him for his work. The first song we sang together when he asked to be considered again confirmed what God was trying to tell everyone in the room. All I can say is welcome home Eric, good to have you back!”

Mark continues, “We would like to thank 28 men and two ladies that showed interest in filling the position. We are honored that you would trust this ministry that much. Also, we MUST thank our friend Jim Cox from Cumming, Ga for his excellent job of filling in at the tenor position over the last two months. Jim has been a true joy to our fans and friends across the country.”

Just in case you’re new to Southern Gospel, or had forgotten how good Eric is, here is a little reminder:

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31 Letters to the Editor

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  1. Sweet!!!!!!!

  2. This is AWESOME! I loved Eric when he started with Mark, and his addition to this lineup only elevates the group. If this lineup stays together, the sky’s the limit!

  3. While taking nothing away from Eric’s awesome ending on this song, and it is awesome, this just reminded me how awesome Mark Trammell is. There are really good singers, then there is Mark Trammell. What a voice!

    I’m glad Eric’s back. This should be fun to watch!

    • I think my main objective in selecting this song, in particular, was to remind everyone how good they are together.

      • Good job!

  4. i liked it so much I may just start driving the bus!! Seriously, it is great to have Eric back with the quartet. i am looking forward to great times ahead. i also want to publicly thank Jim for not only filling in, but giving everything he had every night. Jim is pure class and an awesome singer. Needless to say, God has richly blessed the quartet and i believe will continue to do so if we keep our focus on him. keep us in your prayers.

    • We sure will!

      For once, words fail me to capture how excited I was to wake up to this news. 🙂

      • This is my sentiments exactly Daniel. I saw this when I woke up and immediately called my little brother and left him a voicemail. I told him that I would normally just text the information but since he and I both were hoping and praying that Eric would go back with MTQ, I wanted him to hear my excitement in my voice!!!! I cannot wait to hear them now!! Wow! That is all I can say is…Wow!!

      • And I likewise – I called my family at 6 AM, as soon as I turned on the computer and saw the news. Now I knew some of them would be awake by then, but there are very few things that would get me to call my family at 6 AM!

      • I understand!! My little brother was singing all weekend in the Smoky Mountains and he is still snoozing away I am sure because I have not heard from him yet. However, when he gets the message, he may just have a shouting fit too!!! Eric is one of his tenor heroes and rightly so!!

  5. Yeah, I thought that was really cool when I read it earlier. I don’t know if they held auditions, but pretty much any tenor who tried out were pretty much out of luck. 🙂 That isn’t to say there aren’t other great ones out there, but with Eric being the original, being in there so long, and being so close to Mark, it was pretty much a given.
    It will be interesting to hear how he sounds with them as a quartet now. I certainly think it will work out fine, but we haven’t heard that combination so I look forward to it.

    • Actually, as of NQC, it wasn’t a given. Group members indicated that while they would love to have Eric back, they thought at the time that he wasn’t inclined to come back. I think that quite a few Southern Gospel fans are delighted and then some that he changed his mind! 🙂

      • This is great news, as everyone has said. The combination of Phillips, Sweatman, Trammell, and Barker is about as solid as they come.

        A mainline CD featuring Phillips reunited with Mark Trammell with Pat Barker now in the mix should be one of the more highly anticipated releases of 2012. I’ve always enjoyed the Mark Trammell Trio and now the Mark Trammell Quartet, but I don’t think we’ve heard that truly fantastic CD from them yet.

        The return of Eric Phillips makes me think next CD could be it.

      • Okay “given” is not the best choice of words. I didn’t mean that the others didn’t have a chance or it was decided from the beginning. I guess a better term (although not one I typically like to use) is no-brainer. I don’t like that, because even obvious decisions require a brain to decide. 😀

      • I see where you were going now! 🙂

  6. I never had the pleasure of hearing MTT with Eric at tenor, so I went straight to Youtube when I heard the news last night. Wow! MTQ was already becoming a favorite since the addition of Pat, and this hire raises my interest level even more!

  7. Way to cool. So happy to hear the news and look forward to more great music from the guys. This is one of the most “solid”
    quartets today. With the return of Eric they will certainly give anyone more than a run for their money. What a blessing they will certainly be!

  8. Terrific News! Trying to book them right now!

    • I imagine you aren’t the only one!

  9. I’m going to see them Thursday night! Any idea when Eric’s first day back will be?

    • The announcement, quoted above, used the phrase “at the end of the year.”

      • Whoops, must have missed it. Thanks.

      • No problem!

  10. LOL you must really like that video, Daniel. Thats the one you used when Eric left MTT, too.

    • I hadn’t realized that! 🙂

  11. This is fantastic news. Eric is one of the best and he needs to be singing!

  12. 28 men and 2 ladies tried out??? Interesting.

    • One has to wonder what type of jokes they would have used if a woman had won out. Sings like a lady, but looks like a guy? 😉

    • Not necessarily tried out – their word choice was “showed interest.”

  13. The perfect choice! So glad Eric was ready to come back. Can’t wait to see/hear this quartet.

  14. This is good news, I’ve always thought Eric was about the best in the business!