Detroit-area musician Jeffrey Adam Gutt appeared on Simon Cowell’s talent show X-Factor last year, auditioning with a riveting version of Cohen’s “Hallelujah.” I don’t know if it’s better described as the broken howl of a faded rock star, or the desperate Hail Mary of a struggling artist who never got his break. Either way, it was wasted on the judges and he was inexplicably booted later in the season.
I just learned that he’s back on X-Factor this year; it’s going better this time and I hope he wins, although I don’t know if I can bring myself to watch a whole season of X-Factor to find out. He’s also finally released a single of “Hallelujah.” Yes, the video is unabashed ruin-porn. But if it weren’t over the top, it wouldn’t be a rock version of “Hallelujah”; after all, that song is to ruined Detroit churches as “Stairway to Heaven” is to everywhere else. And the guy can really sing. Enjoy:
His live audition was better — the audience response was electric — but I LOVE Jeff Gutt. I hope he gets to make a living making art for many years to come. And when he hits it big, I hope he remakes this video with cameos by Meatloaf and Bonnie Tyler.