Ryan Quinn, a Clinton High and SUNY Oneonta graduate, was the only contestant to turn all four chairs during the blind audition portion of NBC’s The Voice last week. Quinn’s performance of Blind Faith’s “Can’t Find My Way Home” blew away the judges and rocketed to number two on the iTunes rock charts following the broadcast. To date, his performance has over one million views on YouTube.
This week, he faced off against fellow Team Adam member Katie Basden, performing a duet of Paul McCartney’s “Maybe I’m Amazed” and was selected to continue as a member of Levine’s team. Basden, managed to stay in the competition after Blake Shelton “stole” her for his team.
Since last Monday, Quinn’s life has been a whirlwind. His Facebook following has increased fourfold, the number of Twitter followers has done the same and naturally, reporters have come calling for interviews. No further proof of his popularity surge was needed than at his performance Friday night at one of his home venues, Cavallo’s in New Hartford.
Reservations were recommended to attend the show, and the room was at full capacity thirty minutes prior to Quinn stepping onstage with his partner, long-time family friend, guitarist Dave “Dinger” Wingfield. NYS Music was on the scene for the home town performance and also sat down to speak with Quinn about how he’s dealing with his sudden fame; what the kids at the House of the Good Shepherd mean to him and where to next.
To meet Ryan Quinn is to meet a down-to-earth, humble young man grateful for the opportunity to make music. His show Friday night, at the bar that has given him a home the past two years, was his opportunity to not only showcase his incredibly diverse vocal range and musicianship, but to also share the spotlight with his friend, vocalist Cassidy Gerkin and heap praise upon his co-workers and students at the House of the Good Shepherd for the support they have given him. Quinn paused frequently between songs to recognize the cheering section comprised of fellow House of Good Shepherd staff, all donning black t-shirts with the hash tag #Quinnsanity across the front.
Quinn sat for an interview with NYS Music on the eve of the second round of competition for The Voice. The person who emerged was one eager to deflect attention towards others and who is just now coming to terms that he has earned a spot on one of television’s most popular shows.
Mike Kohli: It was great meeting you the other night. Great show. You had a ton of people there.
Ryan Quinn: Thanks for coming out Friday. I appreciate it. It was wild. Probably the best show I’ve ever played.
MK: So, has it started to sink in yet? This whole The Voice thing?
RQ: I think it’s finally beginning to. Maybe not the sheer magnitude of it, but every day it’s a little bit more clear as to what’s going on. I guess that gig was a good indication. People were there from Boston. People were there at 3:30 for a show that started at 8:00. It was so absurd to me. But, yeah, I’m finally starting to wrap my head around it.
MK: One thing about the people in this area; when one of their own does well, they’re all on board.
RQ: Oh, my God. It’s unbelievable. The support is more than I could ever have even dreamed of.
MK: It was obvious during your performance, many times throughout the night, the look on your face was one of overwhelming shock at the adulation you’re being given. You did a great job of… you were very humble, in deflecting that attention towards the people who were onstage with you, the people and kids you work with…just mentioning the House of the Good Shepherd several times throughout the show. It just kind of shows that you’re not in it to become a famous musician. You’re in it because you’re doing something you love and you just happen to have people that you love surrounding you. Is that Ryan Quinn?