Rufus Wainwright

Rufus Wainwright (born 22 July 1973) is a Canadian-American singer-songwriter.

Biography

Wainwright was born in Rhinebeck, New York to folk singers Loudon Wainwright III and Kate McGarrigle (they later divorced while he was a child). He began to play the piano at age six, and by age thirteen he was touring with his sister Martha, mother Kate (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kate_McGarrigle), and aunt Anna as the "McGarrigle Sisters and Family." His song "I'm Running," which he performed in the movie Tommy Tricker and the Stamp Traveller, was nominated for the 1989 Genie Award for Best Original Song and earned him a nomination for the 1990 Juno Award for Most Promising Male Vocalist.

Despite being born in the United States, Wainwright strongly identifies with Canada and still maintains a residence there. He lived in Montreal with his mother for most of his childhood and briefly attended McGill University, where he studied both classical and 'rock' piano. Additionally, some of his songs feature his mastery of French.

Coming out as a homosexual while still a teen, Wainwright found solace through opera throughout his adolescent years (His track Barcelona features lyrics of Guiseppi Verdi). He also became an enthusiast of such performers as Edith Piaf, Al Jolson and Judy Garland.

After having been a fixture on the Montreal club circuit, Wainwright cut a series of demo tapes, one of which found itself in the hands of DreamWorks executive Lenny Waronker. The label signed him and he relased an album in the spring of 1998. This album landed much critical acclaim in Canada, and was even recognized by Rolling Stone magazine as one of the best albums of the year. Wainwright's sophomore album, Poses (2001), brought similar acclaim.

Wainwright's first main exposure to the American public came as an opener to singer Tori Amos in 2001 and 2002. He garnered great praise for his performance and began touring as a main act shortly afterwards. He has frequently toured as the opener for Sting and co-headlined with Ben Folds and Guster in the summer of 2004. He still often performs with his sister Martha Wainwright (now herself an emerging artist) on backup vocals.

In addition to being a pianist, Wainwright is a guitarist, often switching between the two instruments when performing live; however, his mastery of the guitar does not approach his talent with the piano. While some of his most moving songs feature just Wainwright with his piano, many of his songs display complex layering and harmonies, occasionally comprising hundreds of individual parts. Wainwright is an avid opera fan, and the influences on his music are evident; his music has been described as "Popera" (Pop Opera) or "Baroque Pop." His lyrics are filled with allusions to opera, literature, pop culture, and, more recently, politics (in songs such as "Gay Messiah" and "Waiting for a Dream").

Rufus Wainwright playing in London in 2004. By Matt Whitby

Wainwright's newest album, Want Two, of which four songs were released as the EP Waiting for a Want, was released from DreamWorks/Geffen on November 16, 2004. It is a companion to the 2003 release Want One. His latest, a live iTunes Sessions EP entitled Alright Already is due for release in March 2005. He made his motion picture debut in The Aviator and will also appear in the upcoming film, Heights.

Discography

Albums

  • Rufus Wainwright (1998, DreamWorks)
  • Poses (2001, DreamWorks)
  • Want One (2003, DreamWorks)
  • Waiting for a Want (EP; 2004, DreamWorks) - available only on iTunes
  • Want Two (2004, DreamWorks/Geffen)
  • Alright Already (EP; 2005, DreamWorks/Geffen) - available only on iTunes

Contributions

  • "I'm Running" - Soundtrack to the Motion Picture Tommy Tricker and the Stamp Traveller (1989)
  • "Le Roi D'Ys" and "On the Banks of the Wabash" - Soundtrack to the Motion Picture The Myth of Fingerprints (1997)
  • "Shooldays", "What'll I Do?", "Heartburn", "Talk to Me of Mendocino", "Goodnight Sweetheart" and background vocals on various other tracks. - The McGarrigle Hour (1998)
  • "Instant Pleasure" - Soundtrack to the Motion Picture Big Daddy (1999, Sony)
  • "Complainte de la Butte" - Soundtrack to the Motion Picture Moulin Rouge! (2001, Interscope)
  • "Hallelujah" - Soundtrack to the Motion Picture Shrek (2001, Dreamworks)
  • "He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother" - Soundtrack to the Motion Picture Zoolander (2001, Hollywood Records)
  • "Across the Universe" - Soundtrack to the Motion Picture I Am Sam (2002, V2/BMG)
  • "When, in disgrace with fortune and men's eyes" - When Love Speaks (2002, EMI Classics)
  • "It's Only a Paper Moon" and "I Wonder What Became of Me" - Stormy Weather: The Music of Harold Arlen (2003, Sony)
  • "I Eat Dinner" (with Dido) - Soundtrack to the Motion Picture Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason (2004, Geffen Records)
  • "I'll Build A Stairway To Paradise" - Soundtrack to the Motion Picture The Aviator (2004, Sony)

Awards and nominations

Juno Awards:

  • 1990 - Nominated, Most Promising Male Vocalist of the Year
  • 1999 - Won, Best Alternative Album, Rufus Wainwright
  • 2000 - Nominated, Best Songwriter; "Poses," "Cigarettes and Chocolate Milk," and "Grey Gardens"
  • 2002 - Won, Best Alternative Album, Poses

Genie Awards:

  • 1989 - Won, Best Original Song, "I'm A Runnin'"

Other:

  • 1999 - Won, Oustanding Music Album, GLAAD Media Awards
  • 1999 - Won, Debut Album of the Year, Gay/Lesbian American Music Awards
  • 2004 - Nominated, Shortlist Music Prize

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Other:. Warren Cooke still stayed with the band until after the band recorded The Underdog EP. Genie Awards:.
When Ben Dobson and Todd Clary left Yellowcard, Ryan Key picked up from there. Juno Awards:. The band's three singles from their 2003 release are "Way Away", "Ocean Avenue", and most recenltly, "Only One.". He made his motion picture debut in The Aviator and will also appear in the upcoming film, Heights. The band's popularity continues today and has toured with bands such as Something Corporate and Less Than Jake, as well as appearing on the soundtrack of the hit film Spider-Man 2.

His latest, a live iTunes Sessions EP entitled Alright Already is due for release in March 2005. Fans loved the album's sincere lyrics and unique musical style (mostly due to Mackin's violin playing). It is a companion to the 2003 release Want One. However, Yellowcard's real public reception came after signing with Capitol Records in 2003 and releasing Ocean Avenue. Wainwright's newest album, Want Two, of which four songs were released as the EP Waiting for a Want, was released from DreamWorks/Geffen on November 16, 2004. The new group released their debut album, One for the Kids (Lobster Records), in 2001, and followed up with The Underdog EP (Fueled by Ramen Records) in 2002 which were both well-received by fans. Wainwright is an avid opera fan, and the influences on his music are evident; his music has been described as "Popera" (Pop Opera) or "Baroque Pop." His lyrics are filled with allusions to opera, literature, pop culture, and, more recently, politics (in songs such as "Gay Messiah" and "Waiting for a Dream"). Their current singer left and was replaced by Ryan Key who convinced the band that they couldn't be successful in Florida, so they decided to move to Southern California.

While some of his most moving songs feature just Wainwright with his piano, many of his songs display complex layering and harmonies, occasionally comprising hundreds of individual parts. The band released their first album, Where We Stand (Takeover Records), in 1999 and met with some success, but some began to undergo some changes. In addition to being a pianist, Wainwright is a guitarist, often switching between the two instruments when performing live; however, his mastery of the guitar does not approach his talent with the piano. Originally, the band was made up of five members: Ben Dobson (vocals), Todd Clary (vocals,guitar),Ben Harper (guitar), Sean Mackin (violin), Warren Cooke (bass), and Longineu Parsons (drums). He still often performs with his sister Martha Wainwright (now herself an emerging artist) on backup vocals. Yellowcard was formed in 1997 in Jacksonville, Florida after meeting at Douglas Anderson School of the Arts. He has frequently toured as the opener for Sting and co-headlined with Ben Folds and Guster in the summer of 2004. Their music is usually categorized as either pop punk or modern rock, though their use of a violin makes them unique among these genres.

He garnered great praise for his performance and began touring as a main act shortly afterwards. Yellowcard is a band based in Los Angeles, California. Wainwright's first main exposure to the American public came as an opener to singer Tori Amos in 2001 and 2002. Peter Mosely, (bass, vocals). Wainwright's sophomore album, Poses (2001), brought similar acclaim. Parsons III, (drums). This album landed much critical acclaim in Canada, and was even recognized by Rolling Stone magazine as one of the best albums of the year. Longineu W.

The label signed him and he relased an album in the spring of 1998. Ben Harper, (guitar). After having been a fixture on the Montreal club circuit, Wainwright cut a series of demo tapes, one of which found itself in the hands of DreamWorks executive Lenny Waronker. Sean Mackin,(violin, vocals). He also became an enthusiast of such performers as Edith Piaf, Al Jolson and Judy Garland. Ryan Key, (vocals, guitar). Coming out as a homosexual while still a teen, Wainwright found solace through opera throughout his adolescent years (His track Barcelona features lyrics of Guiseppi Verdi). Warren Cooke, (bass).

Additionally, some of his songs feature his mastery of French. Longineu Parsons III, (drums). He lived in Montreal with his mother for most of his childhood and briefly attended McGill University, where he studied both classical and 'rock' piano. Ben Harper, (guitar). Despite being born in the United States, Wainwright strongly identifies with Canada and still maintains a residence there. Sean Mackin(Wellman), (violin). He began to play the piano at age six, and by age thirteen he was touring with his sister Martha, mother Kate (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kate_McGarrigle), and aunt Anna as the "McGarrigle Sisters and Family." His song "I'm Running," which he performed in the movie Tommy Tricker and the Stamp Traveller, was nominated for the 1989 Genie Award for Best Original Song and earned him a nomination for the 1990 Juno Award for Most Promising Male Vocalist. Todd Clary, (vocals, guitar).

Wainwright was born in Rhinebeck, New York to folk singers Loudon Wainwright III and Kate McGarrigle (they later divorced while he was a child). Ben Dobson, (vocals). Rufus Wainwright (born 22 July 1973) is a Canadian-American singer-songwriter. Beyond Ocean Avenue: Live At The Electric Factory (2004). 2004 - Nominated, Shortlist Music Prize. Ocean Avenue (2003). 1999 - Won, Debut Album of the Year, Gay/Lesbian American Music Awards. The Underdog EP (2002).

1999 - Won, Oustanding Music Album, GLAAD Media Awards. One for the Kids (2001). 1989 - Won, Best Original Song, "I'm A Runnin'". Where We Stand (1999). 2002 - Won, Best Alternative Album, Poses. Still Standing EP (1998). 2000 - Nominated, Best Songwriter; "Poses," "Cigarettes and Chocolate Milk," and "Grey Gardens". Midget Tossing (1997).

1999 - Won, Best Alternative Album, Rufus Wainwright. 1990 - Nominated, Most Promising Male Vocalist of the Year. "I'll Build A Stairway To Paradise" - Soundtrack to the Motion Picture The Aviator (2004, Sony). "I Eat Dinner" (with Dido) - Soundtrack to the Motion Picture Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason (2004, Geffen Records).

"It's Only a Paper Moon" and "I Wonder What Became of Me" - Stormy Weather: The Music of Harold Arlen (2003, Sony). "When, in disgrace with fortune and men's eyes" - When Love Speaks (2002, EMI Classics). "Across the Universe" - Soundtrack to the Motion Picture I Am Sam (2002, V2/BMG). "He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother" - Soundtrack to the Motion Picture Zoolander (2001, Hollywood Records).

"Hallelujah" - Soundtrack to the Motion Picture Shrek (2001, Dreamworks). "Complainte de la Butte" - Soundtrack to the Motion Picture Moulin Rouge! (2001, Interscope). "Instant Pleasure" - Soundtrack to the Motion Picture Big Daddy (1999, Sony). - The McGarrigle Hour (1998).

"Shooldays", "What'll I Do?", "Heartburn", "Talk to Me of Mendocino", "Goodnight Sweetheart" and background vocals on various other tracks. "Le Roi D'Ys" and "On the Banks of the Wabash" - Soundtrack to the Motion Picture The Myth of Fingerprints (1997). "I'm Running" - Soundtrack to the Motion Picture Tommy Tricker and the Stamp Traveller (1989). Alright Already (EP; 2005, DreamWorks/Geffen) - available only on iTunes.

Want Two (2004, DreamWorks/Geffen). Waiting for a Want (EP; 2004, DreamWorks) - available only on iTunes. Want One (2003, DreamWorks). Poses (2001, DreamWorks).

Rufus Wainwright (1998, DreamWorks).

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