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Jeff Gutt
Birth name Jeffrey Adam Gutt
Born (1976-05-02) May 2, 1976 (age 39)
Origin St. Clair County, Michigan, U.S.
Genres Nu metal, alternative metal, hard rock
Occupation(s) Singer
Instruments Vocals, guitar
Years active 1992–present
Associated acts Dry Cell, Rival City Heights, Acrylic,
Band with No Name, Punch
Website www.jeffgutt.com

Jeffrey Adam "Jeff" Gutt (born May 2, 1976) is a musician and vocalist originating from the Metro Detroit area.

Gutt has appeared in two seasons of the American reality television series The X Factor. He first appeared in Season 2 (2012) when he drew international acclaim for his heartfelt rendition of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah," before being eliminated in the following "Boot Camp" episode. Gutt competed in Season 3 (2013) of The X Factor USA, finishing in second place. In 2014, Gutt was dubbed as one of the most 'influential' X Factor USA contestants of all-time by FoxWeekly.[1]

Early life[edit]

Gutt's family resided in St. Clair County, located in southeast Michigan, throughout most of his childhood years. He attended schools in both Algonac and Marine City, graduating from Marine City High School in 1994.

Gutt's prominent band during his high school years was Innerfaith. He was the frontman of Innerfaith, which he formed with friends Matt Brooks on bass, Jeff Sankuer on drums, and guitarist Patrick Sankuer. Innerfaith wrote and performed original songs, ultimately winning the "Blue Water Area Battle of the Bands" in Marysville, Michigan.

In 2012 two early extended plays featuring Gutt on vocals were made downloadable for free through his official site: a 3-track 1992-1995 compilation (named Nautical Star by fans for its cover) and a 4-track Dragonfly (1997). The latter was recorded by Gutt with the band of the same name which featured Steve Mazur of Our Lady Peace on guitar.[2] Lyrics from the Dragonfly song "Sugarpill" were later used for a Dry Cell song "New Revolution".

In Dry Cell[edit]

Gutt became the lead vocalist for Dry Cell by joining the rock band Beyond Control with the already current members Danny Hartwell, Judd Gruenbaum, and Brandon Brown. After performing with them until 2004 and after the band released a studio album titled Disconnected in 2002,[3] he left the band briefly with Dave Wasierski replacing him as lead vocalist. Gutt rejoined Dry Cell in 2005.

The band went on a brief hiatus from 2005 to 2007, but in 2008 reunited with same members. In 2009 Gutt left Dry Cell for good.[4]

In early 2010 a compilation The Dry Cell Collection was released.[5] It contains previously released demos from 2003, 2005 and 2008, b-sides from Disconnected and one previously unreleased song, "So Alive". The band had no news on their MySpace page since 2010. In 2012, it was said on Gutt's official website that Dry Cell is now defunct.

In Acrylic, Band With No Name and Punch[edit]

After parting ways with Dry Cell in 2004, Gutt recorded 8 demo songs with a band named Acrylic.[6]

In 2005 (when Dry Cell went on hiatus) Gutt and his friend, guitarist Gary Pittel formed Band With No Name (abbreviated as BWNN).[7] The band also included Aaron Hutchinson (drums), Justin “Antic” Hackman (keyboards), Mike Guy and later Ben Lula (bass). In 2007 BWNN released a 5-track self-titled EP.[8] In 2008 they won 89X & TNTs Battle Of The Bands in Michigan and received $10,000 and studio time to record a new EP.[9] 7 new songs were recorded and a full-length album named Humanity was released in 2009.[10] In 2013 it was re-released under Gutt's name on iTunes and included the song "Stay", which was previously known as the album's B-side.[11]

Gutt, Pittel and Hutchinson also perform live as a cover band, Punch.[12]

Gutt also appears on Solystic's songs Carry On,[13] Open Letter[14] and Almost Dead.[15]

In one of the interviews Gutt states that once he was "really close to becoming a new singer for Alice in Chains..."[16]

The X Factor[edit]

Season 2[edit]

In 2012, Gutt auditioned for the second season of the American singing competition series The X Factor. In an episode broadcast on September 20, 2012, Gutt sang "Hallelujah", a cover of Leonard Cohen getting unanimous four "yes"es from the judges Simon Cowell, Britney Spears, Demi Lovato and L.A. Reid.[17] But he couldn't make it past the "bootcamp" stage and was eliminated before the live shows. Several weeks later, Cowell stated to Access Hollywood that one regret he had was sending Gutt home early.[18]

On March 29, 2013, Gutt released a music video for his debut solo single "Hallelujah" through vimeo.[19] Gutt's bandmates from BWNN are also shown in the video. On April 28, 2013, the single was released on iTunes.[20]

Gutt's performances included:

Show Theme Song Original artist Order Result
Audition Free choice "Hallelujah" Leonard Cohen N/A Through to bootcamp
Bootcamp 1 Solo performance Not aired Through to bootcamp 2
Bootcamp 2 Group performance Through to bootcamp 3
Bootcamp 3 Duet performance "If I Die Young" The Band Perry Eliminated

Season 3[edit]

In 2013, he returned once again with the third season of the competition. He auditioned with the song "I Don't Want to Miss a Thing" from Aerosmith. After the judges objected, he was offered a second song, "Creep" from Radiohead.[21] Based on that performance, he was put in the Final 40, and one of ten finalists in the "Over 25" category mentored by Kelly Rowland.

In the newly introduced "four-chair challenge", Gutt sang "Amazing Grace" and was selected as a Final 16 candidate and one of four in the "Over 25" category.[22]

Ultimately, Gutt was the runner-up for The X Factor Season 3, finishing second place to Alex & Sierra in a razor-thin margin of votes from American viewers.[23]

Gutt's performances include:

Day of broadcast Show Theme Song Original artist Result
September 18 Audition Free choice "I Don't Want to Miss a Thing"
Through to Four-Chair challenge
October 2 Four-Chair Challenge Solo performance "Amazing Grace" John Newton Advanced
October 29 Live show 1 (Top 16) Mentor's choice "Try" Pink Saved by Kelly Rowland
November 6 Live show 2 (Top 13) Motown Night "Say You, Say Me" Lionel Richie N/A
November 7 Live show 3 (Top 13 Get Another Chance) Free choice "In the Air Tonight" Phil Collins Safe
November 13 Live show 4 (Top 12) 80's Night "(I Just) Died in Your Arms" Cutting Crew Safe
November 20 Live show 5 (Top 10) British Invasion "Bohemian Rhapsody" Queen Safe
November 27 Live show 6 (Top 8) Big Band Night "Feeling Good" Anthony Newley and Leslie Bricusse Safe
December 4 Live show 7 (Top 6) Diva Night
"Without You"
Mariah Carey
Elton John
December 11 Live show 8 (Top 4) Viewers' choice "Hallelujah" Leonard Cohen Safe
Duet (with Restless Road) "Every Breath You Take" The Police
No Theme "Demons" Imagine Dragons
December 12 Victory song "Open Arms" Journey
December 18 Live show 9 (Finale) Winner's song "Dream On" Aerosmith Runner-up
Celebrity duet "Iris" (with John Rzeznik) Goo Goo Dolls
Favorite performance "Creep" Radiohead
December 19 Christmas songs "O Holy Night" Adolphe Adam

Post X Factor career[edit]

On January 26, 2014 Gutt revealed two members of his future band: BWNN/Punch bandmate Gary Pittel (guitar) and ex-Dry Cell bandmate Brandon Brown (drums).[24][25] One day later two more band members were announced: Cyamak Ashtiani on guitar and KC Jenkins on bass.[26][27]

On April 27, 2014, Gutt gave an interview to the Detroit Don't Panic radio during which three new songs recorded by him and the new band were premiered: "Bittersweet", "Shadows in Light" and "Your Name".

On May 3, 2014, Gutt and the new band played the debut show at the Masonic Temple in Detroit.[28]

In December, 2014, Gutt released "A Detroit Christmas" single.

On May 29, 2015, Gutt announced the name of the new band - Rival City Heights.[29]

Personal life[edit]

Gutt is a single father and has one son, Talon.


With Dragonfly[edit]

  • 1997 - Dragonfly

With Dry Cell[edit]

  • 2001 - Demo EP (as Impür)
  • 2002 - Disconnected
  • 2010 - The Dry Cell Collection

With Band With No Name (BWNN)[edit]

  • 2007 - BWNN EP
  • 2009 - Humanity (re-released in 2013 as Gutt's solo album on iTunes)

Solo discography[edit]

  • 1992–95 - "Nautical Star"
  • 2013 - Hallelujah (Single)
  • 2013 - The X Factor USA Season 3 Live Performances[30]
  • 2014 - A Detroit Christmas (Single) [31]


  1. ^ Rogers, Danny (2014-05-09). "10 Most Influential X Factor USA Contestants". Fox Weekly. 
  2. ^ Steve Mazur's Twitter
  3. ^ Dry Cell "Disconnected" on iTunes
  4. ^ Clinton resident wins fans on ‘X Factor’
  5. ^ "The Dry Cell Collection" on Amazon
  6. ^ JEFF GUTT - with ACRYLYC - All The Dirty (Live in Michigan 2004)
  7. ^ BWNN on MySpace
  8. ^ BWNN - Band With No Name (EP) (2007)
  9. ^ BWNN Live @ TNT's June 5th 2008 - FULL SET
  10. ^ BWNN's "Humanity" on Last.fm
  11. ^ Jeff Gutt - Humanity on iTunes
  12. ^ Jeff Gutt performing songs from the X Factor in Punch with Gary Pittel and Aaron Hutchinson
  13. ^ Solystic - Carry On (feat. Jeff Gutt)
  14. ^ "Open letter" feat Jeff Gutt
  15. ^ Solystic - Almost Dead (feat. Jeff Gutt
  16. ^ Jeff Gutt on Patriot Pride Interview
  17. ^ The X Factor USA 2012 - Jeffery Gutt's audition - Hallelujah
  18. ^ The X Factor: Simon Cowell Calls Boot Camp Exit Of Jeffrey Gutt ‘A Mistake’
  19. ^ Jeff Gutt's "Hallelujah" music video. Posted March 29, 2013.
  20. ^ Jeff Gutt "Hallelujah" (Single) on iTunes
  21. ^ Vultaggio, Maria (September 26, 2013). "Jeff Gutt 'X Factor:' How Far Will He Go? [VIDEO]". International Business Times. Retrieved September 27, 2013. 
  22. ^ An Amazing Performance From Jeff Gutt - THE X FACTOR USA 2013
  23. ^ "The X Factor USA contestants web page". Retrieved 21 December 2013. 
  24. ^ The drummer of my band will be Brandon Brown (formerly of Dry Cell)
  25. ^ I would like to introduce the 1st member of my band.
  26. ^ Finally, on bass is KC Jenkins (San Diego) AMAZING musician...
  27. ^ Cyamak Ashtiani (Hush, The Dreaming) will be the 2nd guitar player.
  28. ^ Don’t Panic Radio 04/27/14
  29. ^ Rival City Height band logo
  30. ^ The X Factor USA Season 3 Live Performances by Jeff Gutt on iTunes
  31. ^ A Detroit Christmas @ Amazon.com

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