All information below is correct, as far as I can tell. I can't put absolutely everything in here, so let me know if there is something substantial missing, or if there are errors. I'm only human, after all. :-)
So, here goes.
Who is Jacob Collier?
|Photo: Greg Gorman, from |
Jacob Collier facebook page.
Collier plays all sorts of stringed instruments, double bass, electric bass, drums, keyboards and lots of different percussion instruments. And yes, the "studio" recordings (in his music room at home) are all done with his own voice, layered one by one, with no auto-tune, Melodyne or other cheats in the close harmony singing sections. Here is a short feature and interview with PRI in 2012, a long interview with Leo Sidran in 2014 (1 h 38 min) and a short interview with CoolCleveland Feb 2015. Also a BBC Radio 2 interview with Clare Teal in January 4, 2015.
His performances have been praised by top artists such as Chick Corea, Take 6, David Crosby, Herbie Hancock, James Taylor (singer), Jamie Cullum, Jimmy Haslip, K.D. Lang, Pat Metheny, Peter Erskine, Quincy Jones, Snarky Puppy, Steve Vai, Tower of Power. And the list goes on. They are all awed, and Quincy Jones himself has taken Collier "under his wing" and is clearly impressed.
Here's a sort of timeline containing some of his achievements and activities, the start of it is lifted from his web page and supplemented with other information found around the "interweb". His age is in the timeline to show how early his talent shines through.
- Born August 2, 1994.
- 8 years old: took on singing lessons (2002).
- 8 years old: appeared in Keith Warner’s critically acclaimed production of “Wozzeck” at the Royal Opera House in London.
- 10 years old: sang the role of ‘Tiny Tim’ in the film A Christmas Carol (2004). He is listed as Jacob Moriarty.
- 12 years old: sang the role of ‘Miles’ in three separate international productions of Benjamin Britten’s ‘The Turn of the Screw’. Review in the Guardian.
- 13 years old: Mozart’s Magic Flute with ENO at the London Coliseum (2007).
- 14 years old: was awarded the gold medal by Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM) for attaining the highest mark in the country for his Grade 8 Singing (2008).
- 14 years old: joined the Royal College of Music Junior Department as a composer.
- 15 years old: 2009-2010, made Kami's Journey, an original, entirely home-made and home-produced album.
- 16 years old: joined the Royal Academy of Music Junior Jazz Department as a pianist, and the Purcell School, studying composition, jazz piano and voice (2010).
- 17 years old: published on Dec 14, 2011 Serendipity at YouTube. As I understand, originally a school project.
- 17 years old: published on Dec 18, 2011 The Arrow and the Song at YouTube. This is a Henry Wadsworth Longfellow poem with his own original music.
- 17 years old: published on Feb 14, 2012 I've Told Every Little Star at YouTube.
- 17 years old: published on Feb 26, 2012 Isn't She Lovely at YouTube.
- 17 years old: published on Apr 6, 2012 The Road Not Taken at YouTube. Composed and arranged by Collier, with words from the famous poem by Robert Frost.
- 17 years old: published on Jul 12, 2012 Oh What a Beautiful Morning at YouTube.
- 18 years old and onwards: studies at London’s Royal Academy of Music as a Jazz Pianist.
- 18 years old: published on Dec 10, 2012 I Saw Three Ships at YouTube.
- 18 years old: published on Apr 2, 2013 Pure Imagination at YouTube.
- 19 years old: published on Oct 13, 2013 Don't You Worry 'Bout A Thing at YouTube.
- 19 years old: July 2014, presented by Quincy Jones at the Montreux Jazz Festival.
- 20 years old: published on Aug 13, 2014 Fascinating Rhythm at YouTube.
- 20 years old: October 2014, contributing to a presentation of Royal Academy of Music in Jazz at the Royal Academy of Music.
- 20 years old: November 2014, appearing with Snarky Puppy in London.
- 20 years old: published on Dec 16, 2014 Close To You at YouTube.
- 20 years old: February 2015, appearing on Snarky Puppy's "Family dinner vol 2".
- 20 years old: April 2015, gig at Pizza Express in London, with Robin Mullarkey and Louis Cole. Here's Eleanor Rigby from that gig.
- 20 years old: published on Apr 18, 2015 Georgia On My Mind at YouTube.
- 20 years old: May 2015, does rehearsals and a concert with WDR Big Band.
- 20 years old: 31 May / 1 June, gig at Pizza Express in London, with Robin Mullarkey and James Maddren. Here's a clip of Superstitious, posted on Facebook.
- 20 years old: 1 July, gig at Ronnie Scott's in London, with Robin Mullarkey and James Maddren.
- 20 years old: July 16, 2015 - shares the bill with Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock and Melody Gardot at Montreux Jazz Festival.
- 20 years old: in July 2015 featured on BBC Introducing (Maida Vale sessions) with Crazy She Calls Me (with Jamie Cullum), Eleanor Rigby, Danny Boy and Ancona. I personally feel that this version of Ancona from 2014 is a better one, despite its obvious rehearsal-"flaws".
- 21 years old: in September 2015 arranged and performed the hymn Jerusalem as the Soundtrack for Beats by Dre: "The Game Starts Here" advert related to the Rugby World Cup.
- 21 years old: published on September 26th 2015 his take on Michael Jackson's classic PYT. Arranged, performed, produced, filmed and edited by Collier, featuring Quincy Jones.
Recommended listening: Well, all of it, really. At least one of the early singing tracks, like his second effort Isn't She Lovely, some of the later tracks with more instruments on, like Don't You Worry 'Bout A Thing or Fascinating Rhythm. The interview with Leo Sidran shows him as the pleasant, intelligent and humble person that he is, and he talks about his background, life in general, music, education and his videos. Highly recommended.
My personal favourites are The Road Not Taken, I Saw Three Ships, Don't You Worry 'Bout A Thing, Close To You, Ancona and Danny Boy.
Where to find him:
Web page: http://www.jacobcollier.co.uk
EDIT: See also Jacob Collier's album is out.