Eric Phillips to leave Mark Trammell Trio
The Mark Trammell Trio has announced the resignation of founding member Eric Phillips. He has been their tenor since they started seven years ago. He is leaving to pursue a career in law enforcement.
The announcement on the group’s website states: [EDIT, 11/8/10: The link is broken and has been removed.]
It is with bittersweet emotion that we announce the soon departure of our award winning tenor Eric Phillips. Eric has served this ministry with integrity and honor since our very beginning seven years ago. Bitter, because I view him as a second son and cherish the bond and relationship God has allow us to have for these years. Sweet, because we firmly believe that God has a plan for all of us as we move forward to the next phase of our lives. Eric has been praying with careful consideration about this move for a number of months and feels confident that his return to Law Enforcement is what is best for he and his family. Please join us in praying for God’s perfect will for both Eric and this ministry. His departure will take place sometime mid to late summer depending on our finding a suitable replacement and his re-instatement to active duty as a police officer. As Eric stated to me, “I have two passions. One is singing, and the other is Law Enforcement. I have enjoyed my days with MTT and have enjoyed the love of gospel music fans around the world. But I am convinced this is the right timing for this change.” Anyone interested in auditioning for the tenor position should send a brief resume along with a sample tape or CD to Mark Trammell Trio/audition/PO Box 588/Gadsden, AL/35902. We will in turn listen and then contact those we feel to be the individuals most likely to fit our style, etc. Auditions will begin just after fathers day as the group will be on an eight day tour and then vacation immediately following. If you wish to send cards of encouragement to Eric, Lauren, Carley, and Blake, send them to Eric Phillips / c/o Mark Trammell Trio/PO Box 588/Gadsden, AL 35902. I smile when reminded that the only thing that doesn’t change is Jesus. In order for us to grow as Christians, change must take place. We wish Eric and his family God’s speed in the days ahead.
In HIS service,
Phillips’ distinctive voice and range make him nearly irreplacable. What is even more rare than his range, though, is his consistency. The tenor part is the most demanding part to sing; even the best professional Southern Gospel tenors have nights where they struggle to hit certain notes. But Phillips was rarely if ever heard to struggle to hit notes.
Here is one of my favorite Phillips moments:
EDIT. One other thought. Phillips is undeniably going out on top. Not only is he in peak voice, but he is also coming off the success of the group’s strongest project to date, Always Have a Song to Sing, a project I reviewed and rated 5 stars of 5 here.