Artist Watch: With a Bow and String

Wednesday, September 14, 2011


There are days where I think, "I should have stuck with the clarinet". The thing was sort of my life from 5th to 12th grade. I could be making a fortune with it now. Serious. I could have made a clarinet rap album and be rolling in the deep bucks, recession be damned. But see, I lacked perseverance when it came to that kind of thing, and thankfully Marques Toliver didn't do like me because we wouldn't be graced with his talent---and boy, does he have some talent.

My first notice came with "White Sails", a really intriguing number that didn't need all the extra trimmings to really move me, it just simply charmed me with its simplicity. It's quite fresh to see someone who isn't behind the usual 'touted' instruments like a piano or a guitar so viewing someone putting a spin on violins is a treat. Plus Toliver's (who was a former street performer) ear is well in-tuned to making classical music fit into a popular music backdrop. If you just look at his appearance on Jools Holland (see below) you can see how much talent he radiates. His debut EP, Butterflies Are Not Freecame out in April, and it's something I'm going to have to get my hands on with the quickness. I know people have been buzzing about Toliver long before this blog went on sabbatical, so excuse me for hitching a ride on the late bus this time out!

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