As for Adam Wakefield fans who were tuned in? That might be a different story.
You see, Dennis has been playing music alongside Adam since before Adam’s highly successful run on Season 10 of The Voice.
And, at 6-foot-8, Dennis — a guitarist and background singer — would be hard to miss.
Dennis said the two started performing together when Adam landed a gig for a trio at a club in Nashville. Adam played keys and sang. Dennis played guitar. They also had a drummer.
“And then we were always looking for ways just to play together,” Dennis told Voice Views. “But the natural thing (for a musician in Nashville) is, you’ve just got to work. So everybody has a million gigs going on.
“But whenever we’d play together, we’d have a lot of fun. When he (Adam) got off the show, he called me. He was like, ‘Hey man, I have the momentum going on and I’d love you to come on the road with me.’ We rehearsed and it’s been that ever since.
“We’re going out in a couple weeks again. I’m playing guitar with him on the road, doing harmonies and stuff like that. That’s my job. That’s what I do in (Nashville).”
Dennis, 27, isn’t a Nashville native. He grew up in the small town of Warren, Ohio, where his father and grandfather were steel workers. Dennis started playing guitar at 7, performed his first paying gig at age 12 and formed a blues band by age 15.
He boasts of never having “a real job.” Even as a teen, his job was performing four-hour gigs around town on weekends.
Then it was off to Berklee College of Music and, after graduating, it was off to Nashville to continue life as a musician, principally as a guitar player for others. He’s also performed alongside Voice Season 9 finalist Barrett Baber. And he co-wrote a song called “When She Cries” that was released by former Voice contestant Nolan Neal.
That’s not to say he’s always been in the background in Nashville. For the last three years, Dennis said he’s honed his singing skills during a regular gig at the Hotel Indigo.
But auditioning for The Voice marked his first major attempt to step out of the background and into the spotlight as a solo artist.
You might say it went well. His blind audition performances of the Black Crowes “She Talks to Angels” prompted an almost immediate chair turn from Adam Levine. Before the song ended, Blake Shelton turned around as well.
Dennis admits he was “really torn” when it came time to select a coach, but he ultimately decided to join Team Blake. He said that’s partly because he remembered how Blake made sure Adam Wakefield had a chance to display his skills on the keys and guitar as a well as a vocalist Season 10.
Another reason for choosing Blake …
“(The) genre of music that I’ve always been drawn to has been ’70s rock and late ’60s, the southern rock, and blues, and I’ve always — I appreciate old country music. And although I don’t sing it, I thought that maybe my taste in songs might
fare better on his team,” Dennis said.
And, of course, he embarked on his Voice journey with some words of advice from one Adam Wakefield.
“The advice he gave me was, ‘Don’t suck,'” Dennis said, jokingly.
On a more serious note, he added. “(Adam) was just, ‘Go out there and sing the song. Tell the story. Don’t go out and try those crazy vocal acrobatics because that ain’t you. Just be true to what it is that you do and nobody can be a better Dennis.’ So that’s kind of what I went out there doing.”
Here are Dennis’ social media links followed by a couple of samples of his music.