If you’re the person that is always on the hunt for an artist that can mix unorthodox instruments to indie folk then look no further than Andrew Bird. Andrew is a virtuoso when it comes to the violin. Now, the violin may not be unorthodox to folk, in fact, it’s on the most popular instruments in that respected genre. However, it is how Andrew Bird plays it to what makes his music so unique. The violin is the spotlight instrument for most of his music, using different styles of playing such as going pizzicato (plucking) or full on strumming the violin like the guitar. Some songs lean more to rock side of folk while others lean towards baroque and almost full on classical. What is for certain though is that he is one of the most talented touring artists of recent years.
Andrew Bird started to play the violin via the Suzuki Method at age 4. From there he went on to graduate Northwestern University in 1996 studying Violin Performance. After graduating, he formed his own band named Andrew Bird’s Bowl of Fire. They went on to record three studio albums, the last one being the most popular called The Swimming Hour. But despite the album being critically acclaimed, his band struggled to gain exposure in his residence of Chicago, so the band disbanded in 2003 with Andrew Bird going solo. From there, Andrew went on to produce several full-length studio albums, the most recent being his most playful and poppy, Are You Serious? released earlier this year.
The power of Andrew Bird’s performances is backed by his unsurprisingly backed by his violin playing. The dynamicity of Bird’s playing allows his violin to sound like multiple instruments including the guitar or the banjo. It should be mentioned too that Andrew Bird is quite talented when it comes to whistling and the glockenspiel as well.
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