‘The Voice’ Contestant Adam Wakefield on Baltimore’s Music Scene

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Adam Wakefield from The Voice (by way of Nashville, by way of Baltimore)
Adam Wakefield of The Voice (by way of Nashville, by way of Baltimore)

We all know that Baltimore’s music scene is fertile and varied. And now we have another testament to that, from The Voice contestant Adam Wakefield.Occupying a space between country & soul, Wakefield’s performances are turning heads on NBC’s singing competition show. (Listen to this one of Ray Charles’s “I Got a Woman.”) His hat, his long hair-short beard combination, his voice all scream “Nashville,” his current home. But it turns out he spent 10 years playing music in Baltimore before heading south in 2013.

Wakefield told the Baltimore Sun what he thought of Charm City: “The music scene is obviously not ideal for someone who’s trying to make it in the mainstream, but the saving grace is that … Baltimore is a great platform.”

When I first read that, I took it as a slight. But he’s right. Of all the great acts who have launched musical careers from Baltimore in the past several years, none could truly be called “mainstream” — at least not after you step out of your Baltimore bubble and give a listen to Top 40 radio.

He also affirmed that Baltimore’s strength is its interaction across genres and demographics, referring to the city as a musical “melting pot.”

“Being in the music scene in Baltimore, doing R&B, blues and stuff like that, really brought everybody together,” Wakefield said.



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