The following article is from the Las Vegas Weekly. October 28, 2004.
Myles Kennedy gets the opportunity of a lifetime with Alter Bridge
By Josh Bell
About a year ago, Myles Kennedy was working on a solo album after the breakup of his band, the Mayfield Four. He, like many alt-rockers of the '90s, had passed his brief moment in the sun (the Mayfield Four released two little-noticed albums on Epic Records) and was figuring out his next step. Around this time, Creed, one of the most popular bands of the last decade, decided to call it quits, and guitarist Mark Tremonti and drummer Scott Phillips had hooked back up with former Creed bassist Scott Phillips to form a new band, Alter Bridge. They were looking for a singer. They called Kennedy, whose band had opened for Creed in 1998. It was a bit of a surprise for the singer, who hadn't spoken to the former Creed players in six years.
Suddenly, Kennedy went from major-label reject to front-man of one of the most scrutinized rock bands in America. Creed had been not only popular but controversial, thanks mostly to singer Scott Stapp's conflicted religious upbringing and spiritual lyrics, lyrics that often tagged the group a Christian band, even if they bristled at the label.
Kennedy is quick to point out that Alter Bridge is neither a Christian band nor even a spiritual one. "I wouldn't say it's spiritual," he says of the band's music, preferring to label it simply "positive." It's clear that Kennedy is uncomfortable having inherited Creed's conflicted relationship to religion. "I know that with this band, we don't have any sort of religious agenda or anything," he emphasizes. "We're definitely not a Christian band, so to speak. We've all got our beliefs but we're not going to push that on anybody."
It's hard to imagine that Kennedy would have any reason to answer these sorts of questions a couple of years ago. But everything about his life and career has changed since then, pushed to the side in favor of the rock monolith known as Alter Bridge. What about that solo album, which Kennedy describes as "Daniel Lanois meets Massive Attack"?
"Maybe in the future it'll be out there somewhere. Maybe I'll just throw it on a movie soundtrack, who knows?" he says with uncertainty.
His songwriting, which was the driving force behind the Mayfield Four and is virtually nonexistent on the Alter Bridge album?
He hopes it'll be represented on Alter Bridge's next effort, but he's not sure. "We'll see what happens," he says.
Clearly, Kennedy views these losses as minor sacrifices. He praises Tremonti, who wrote all the music and most of the lyrics on Alter Bridge's debut, One Day Remains, as "a real gifted guy," and affirms his complete commitment to Alter Bridge. And—really—he's one lucky guy: While One Day Remains is just a bunch of generic Creed riffs without the benefit of Scott Stapp's booming voice and magnetic personality, and really no better than either of the Mayfield Four's failed albums, it is one of the most high-profile releases of the year. It's sold relatively well—not nearly as well as any of Creed's three releases, but leagues ahead of the Mayfield Four's. Being in the band affords Kennedy the opportunity to reach a whole new audience that never knew him in his old band, and even if Tremonti is calling the shots, Kennedy is still at the front of the stage.
He's not one to let his good fortune go unnoticed, either. He mentions his bit part in the 2001 Mark Wahlberg film, Rock Star, in which Wahlberg played a tribute band singer called up to join a major rock group. "It's kind of weird, in a way it's kind of life imitating art in a sense," he says, then laughs. "But I'm not going to be wearing any leather pants or wearing any big wigs like in the movie."