Love Birds: Clint + Lisa Hartman Black Say ‘Masked Singer’ Inspired New Music
Clint Black and his wife Lisa Hartman Black prove inspiration can come from just about anywhere. When their time on The Masked Singer ended, the country singer was moved to write a new love song to sing with his bride of nearly 30 years.
It took some effort, but "'Til the End of Time" will drop on Dec. 3, one day after their Ryman Auditorium concert. During a conversation with Taste of Country about their time on the Fox television show and what's next, Black described a ballad that he says he customized for his wife to sing with him.
Famously, they took "When I Said I Do" to No. 1 on country airplay charts in 1991. This new song is a power ballad with plenty of guitar.
"I beat my head on the wall for about three days getting nowhere, musically or lyrically," Clint Black says. "Then I thought of the opening line, 'I can tell you how the story never ends.' I thought, 'Okay, that's us. 'Til the end of time."
The new song came when their taping for The Masked Singer ended. The couple were revealed as the Snow Owls during Wednesday night's (Nov. 11) episode of the show and both agree leaving was bittersweet, but being there was far more work than they realized going in.
"You go, 'Mask?' I get that it's gonna be tricky," Lisa Hartman Black says. "You do your fitting and then all of a sudden you're in an egg and you're navigating around a stage and you can't see and you just don't want to fall off the stage."
Did you literally know what you were getting into?
Clint: Oh yeah.
Lisa: We knew we were going into an egg, but we didn't know how to operate it.
Clint: They create those costumes from nothing, so they don't know until we're all in them, working the egg, how it's gonna work for us. It was pretty complicated. The amount of space for us in the egg for us to stand and walk was very limited. We had to learn to adapt while sweating profusely.
Your costume was fairly stationary, so by design you couldn't do a lot of dancing. Was this beneficial?
Clint: I don't think so. No, we're used to moving and having some range of motion. I think getting out and moving around would have helped us. Of course, more likely then we would have fallen off the stage. You can't see. The eyes fog up as soon as you put the heads on because it's so hot in there. In one sense, we were safe in the egg, but yeah, it would have been easier to sing and perform getting out of there.
Lisa, when you'd look over and see your husband singing a love song to you, dressed as an owl, did you want to laugh?
Lisa: I think before, there were definitely crack-up moments — then all of a sudden you're in it and it's live and the heart rate goes up and you're dealing with all these elements that are totally unknown and totally challenging. You get down to business, you really do.
But then, you see it on the air and you can't see what the other person is doing and he's right next to me but I had no idea what he was really doing, other than things that we set with the choreographer. So for me, seeing it live, it was funny to see the bits he would do. Certain little hand movements that are so not him, but him being the owl.
Were you aware of who the other singers were at any point?
Lisa: We had no idea.
Clint: I knew.
Lisa: He didn't know. We were covered head to toe. We had to be completely disguised anywhere we went. From the minute we pulled up in the lot, before we could get out of the car, they did an inspection to make sure everything was covered. It was like that the entire time. We never knew who anybody else was. We were trying to sneak. I gotta tell you, we were trying to peek and sneak. Someone would go by and we'd go, 'Well, he's kind of big.' (laughs).
Clint: We got good at lying. We had people, 'What are y'all doing out in L.A.?' Oh, we're doing this helicopter TV show. So you just start coming up with these phony-bologna answers.
With the Ryman Auditorium show on the horizon, were you able to keep any artifacts or pieces from the set or your costumes that could appear on stage?
Clint: That would have been fun. No, we didn't even think of that. Of course, now —
Lisa: They won't let the costumes go. They've got them all mounted and they're in the lair. The lair is that long hallway, they got a lot of them lined up in there.
Both in-person and livestream tickets for the couple's Ryman Auditorium concert are available at Clint Black's website. The venue will be 25 percent full for the night due to coronavirus restrictions, and in addition to Lisa, their daughter Lily will be a special guest.
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