Will Stratton

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Will Stratton
Willstrattonguitar.png
Will Stratton playing in Antwerp, Belgium, 2012
Background information
Birth name Will Lulofs link
Born 1987 (age 26–27)
Northern California United States
Genres Indie folk, folk rock
Occupation(s) Musician, songwriter, composer
Instruments Voice, guitar, banjo, piano, harpsichord, Mellotron, bass
Years active 2007–present
Labels Talitres, Stunning Models on Display, Tompkins Square, Scissor Tail Editions
Website willstratton.com

Will Stratton (born 1987) is an American singer-songwriter and composer.

Early life[edit]

Will was born in northern California, but raised primarily in New Jersey. He began taking piano lessons at the age of 4.[1] He spent one year at University of Puget Sound studying philosophy, before finishing college at Bennington College, where he switched his studies to music composition.[2][3] While at Bennington, Stratton took classes from composer Allen Shawn, which led him to compose his first pieces for other ensembles than a standard string quartet. Stratton has incorporated projects from his course work at Bennington into his albums, including a set of ten piano preludes composed for a second course taught by Shawn.[3] He is 26 years old and currently lives in Brooklyn, New York.[4]

Musical career[edit]

His first album, What the Night Said, was recorded in 2005, the summer after he graduated from high school, and was subsequently released in 2007.[2] It featured a guest appearance by Sufjan Stevens on oboe,[5] and received wide critical praise.[6][7][8]

His second album, No Wonder, featured the vocal work of Essie Jain, among others, and was released on November 3, 2009. The album was co-produced and mixed by Kieran Kelly at The Buddy Project Studio in Astoria, Queens NY. While the album never saw national distribution, No Wonder's title track was the NPR Song of the Day on March 26, 2010.[9]

He has also released two free download-only compilations of demos and instrumental works, as well as Vile Bodies, a free downloadable EP.

In March 2010, Stratton appeared on WNYC radio show Spinning on Air for an hour-long interview and performance with host David Garland. In a first for the show, Stratton and WNYC gave away the songs from the episode as a free EP.[2]

In 2010 and 2012, his third and fourth albums were released, titled New Vanguard Blues and Post-Empire, respectively. He toured Europe for two months with fellow songwriter Paleo, aka David Strackany, in 2012.[10] Post-Empire was named #31 on AOL Spinner's top 50 albums of 2012.[11]

In 2012, Stratton was diagnosed with Stage 3 testicular cancer and underwent successful chemotherapy treatment and surgery.[12]

Influences[edit]

Stratton is a "self professed disciple of Nick Drake."[1] He has also been described as functioning "under the wing of Sufjan Stevens."[8] Some have gone as far as to say that the resemblance to Drake is "unmistakable" at points, while his similarity to Stevens is "so apparent."[6] John Fahey and Leo Kottke are often mentioned as influences on his guitar style.[10]

Discography[edit]

Demos[edit]

  • For No One (2007)
  • Instrumental Music, 2007–2009 (2009)

Studio albums[edit]

EPs[edit]

  • Vile Bodies (2009)

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Leahey, Andrew. "Will Stratton Biography". allmusic, MTV. Retrieved June 29, 2010. 
  2. ^ a b c "Interview with David Garland". WNYC. Retrieved June 29, 2010. 
  3. ^ a b "Recent graduate Will Lulofs '09 releases second album". Bennington College. Retrieved June 29, 2010. 
  4. ^ "Will Stratton". Joe's Pub. Retrieved June 29, 2010. 
  5. ^ All Good Naysayers – What the Night Said
  6. ^ a b Popmatters – Will Stratton – What the Night Said
  7. ^ "What the Night Said". allmusic. Retrieved June 29, 2010. 
  8. ^ a b NPR – Will Stratton – Katydid
  9. ^ NPR Song Of The Day – No Wonder
  10. ^ a b "Now Hear This!: Will Stratton". PopMatters. Retrieved March 31, 2013. 
  11. ^ "The 50 Best Albums of 2012". Spinner. Retrieved March 31, 2013. 
  12. ^ "Will Stratton Continues Cancer Battle Through Dangerous Surgery". Spinner. Retrieved March 31, 2013.