The violin is a very versatile instrument. Centuries ago, the violin was mostly seen in courts and orchestras. However, over time the violin has evolved and been incorporated into emerging musical genres. As modern artists dabbled in classical instruments and expanded its use into the realm of rock, the violin gained popularity in such music. Several rock bands even had their own in-house violinists! Here are some rock bands with brilliant violinists:
The Dave Matthews Band is one of the most famous rock bands of the 2000s, with around 20 million views per music video on YouTube. Their popular songs include Crash Into Me, The Space Between and Crush. Their fiddler, Boyd Calvin Tinsley, helped compose and create the harmonies for their songs. His famous performance would be for the song “Tripping Billies” which featured the sounds of the violin.
- Dirty Three – Warren Ellis
Dirty Three are an Australian rock band who were voted one of the three best albums of the year on the Rolling Stone in the 1960s. Warren Ellis was a violinist known to be one of the most talented instrumentalists in the industry rock who played with Nick Cave. Some of his performances include Jubilee Street, All Things Beautiful and Noisey Meets.
- It’s a beautiful day – David LaFlamme
It’s A Beautiful Day is a San Francisco-based band that creates psychedelic rock music. The band lay claim to their signature single called White Bird. David LaFlamme is the violinist and leader of the group. He helped produce many hit albums such as Bombay Calling and Hot Summer Day.
- East of Eden – Joe O’Donnell
East of Eden are a British band that had their heyday in the 1970s. At one point the band reached the top 10 with their single “Jig-a-Jig”. Joe O’Donnell was known as an innovative violinist who contributed to the success of many songs like Perfect to Me, Storytellers and Noel Nouvelet. He signed with top record labels like Polydor Records and Sony Entertainment.
ZOX is a band from Rhode Island whose album, “The Wait”, was listed on Billboard Magazine as the 7th best between The Black Eyed Peas and Coldplay. They have classified themselves as alternative rock artists. Additionally, their music is described as “fiddle laced” thanks to Spencer Swain who happens to be their vocalist and violinist. His famous plays include U of Toledo and A Little More Time.
Violinists are ubiquitous players who contribute incredible sounds across many genres of music! With that, the violin has played an important role in the success of many albums in the past and I hope it will continue to thrive for generations to come.