Music News

Andrew Bird, Happy Birthday! Six Other Musicians Who Redefine Music

Andrew Bird may not have set out to redefine modern music, but his eclectic fusion of jazz, rock, ragtime, and European folk morphs into a template that defies description. With his initial contributions to the zany Squirrel Nut Zippers, continuing with his own band Bowl of Fire, and with subsequent solo albums, Bird has employed violin, viola, guitar, glockenspiel, keyboards, clarinet, and whistling to structure a unique aural amalgam that's at once accessible and yet altogether unexpected.

Born July 11, 1973, Bird grew up listening to classical music while also absorbing the influences of English and Scottish folk and the sounds of such seminal jazz icons as Johnny Hodges, Lester Young, and Fats Waller. Early on, he distanced himself from indie rock, although he has increasingly integrated that sound into later recordings.

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Lee Zimmerman