Josh Groban

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About Josh Groban

Calling Josh Groban one of the biggest stars in the history of classical crossover certainly is high praise. Yet it doesn’t even begin to sum up the talents of an artist who isn’t just a vocalist but an actor, multi-instrumentalist, and composer as well. When Groban first emerged in the late ’90s, there was no musician quite like him. Still a teenager, the L.A.-raised crooner (born in 1981) was skilled enough to stand in for an under-the-weather Andrea Bocelli at the rehearsals for the 1998 Grammy Awards. At the same time, he possessed all the youthful charm of a pop star—this wasn’t the Three Tenors in tuxedos; this was the nice boy down the street. And the world ate it up. After a string of television appearances, including a highly rated performance on The Rosie O’Donnell Show, he dropped his debut in 2001. Though a supremely confident set, one that sold millions and helped launch the “popera” boom, it was a mere warm-up for the ambitious singer. With each new release, Groban has made bold aesthetic moves that enable his gorgeous balladry to blur the boundaries between classical and whatever genre catches his ear. Awake, released in 2006, is a perfect example: In addition to exploring world music with Ladysmith Black Mambazo and jazz-funk with Herbie Hancock, he worked with rocker Dave Matthews during the songwriting process. This drive to try out fresh ideas hasn’t just produced excellent music; it has allowed Groban to cheat time. The 2020 album Harmony may feature an older and resplendently bearded Groban on the cover, but the stylistically diverse music—including an unexpected gospel collaboration with Kirk Franklin—possesses the same youthful magic that made him a pop phenom over two decades prior.

Los Angeles, CA, United States
February 27, 1981
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