Slacker Logo

Rufus Wainwright

ON AIR
Advertisement
Advertisement

Bio

A singer/songwriter whose lush, theatrical pop harked back to the traditions of Tin Pan Alley, cabaret, and even opera, Rufus Wainwright was born in 1973; the son of folk music luminaries Loudon Wainwright III and Kate McGarrigle, his parents divorced while he was a child, and he was raised by his mother in Montreal. Beginning his piano studies at age six, by 13 he was touring with his mother, aunt Anna, and his sister Martha in a group billed as the McGarrigle Sisters and Family; a year later, Wainwright was nominated for a Juno (the Canadian equivalent of a Grammy) as Most Promising Young Artist, while his "I'm A-Runnin'" was concurrently nominated for a Genie (the Canadian counterpart to an Oscar) for Best Song in a Film. Coming out as a homosexual while still in his teens, Wainwright sought solace in opera throughout his adolescent years, also becoming an enormous fan of performers including Edith Piaf, Al Jolson, and Judy Garland. After attending the prestigious Millbrook School in upstate New York, he briefly studied music at Montreal's McGill University, eventually turning away from classical performance toward pop and rock. Becoming a fixture on the Montreal club circuit, Wainwright soon cut a series of demos with producer Pierre Marchand; Loudon Wainwright III then passed a copy of the tape to friend Van Dyke Parks, who in turn handed it on to DreamWorks exec Lenny Waronker. The label signed him soon after, resulting in the release of Rufus Wainwright during the spring of 1998. The album landed on several critics' "Best of 1998" lists, while Wainwright spent the next few years touring and appearing sporadically on soundtracks (Shrek) and compilations (The McGarrigle Hour). His sophomore album, Poses, brought similar acclaim in mid-2001. After spending much of 2001 and 2002 touring on his own and with Tori Amos, Wainwright settled into Bearsville Studio in Woodstock, New York with producer Marius de Vries to record sort of a double album. The first project, Want One, was released in September 2003, with Want Two following a year later. In 2007, he released both Release the Stars and Rufus Does Judy at Carnegie Hall, a restaging of Garland's legendary Judy at Carnegie Hall performance from 1961. In 2010, Wainwright delivered his sixth studio album, the stripped-down All Days Are Nights: Songs for Lulu, a 12-track, Shakespeare-influenced collection of new material that relied almost solely on the artist's voice and piano. The following year, the musician embarked on his seventh album with the intention of returning to the ornate pop of his early days. The resulting Out of the Game, which was produced by Mark Ronson (Amy Winehouse, Duran Duran), arrived in May 2012. It was followed by the concert album Live from the Artist's Den and the compilation Vibrate: The Best of Rufus Wainwright, both in 2014. A recording of his 2009 debut opera, the French-language Prima Donna, was released by Deutsche Grammophon in 2015. The label also put out his next studio album, Take All My Loves: 9 Shakespeare Sonnets, the following spring. Three of the musical sonnets had appeared on Songs for Lulu but were reworked for Take All My Loves, which commemorated the 400th anniversary of the Bard's death. Guests on the album included Helena Bonham Carter, Carrie Fisher, William Shatner, Martha Wainwright, and Florence Welch of Florence + the Machine, among several other actors and musicians as well as the BBC Symphony Orchestra. ~ Jason Ankeny
Read All Read Less

Albums by
Rufus Wainwright

false

    16 songs

    On Air

    Take All My Loves: 9 Shakespeare Sonnets

    1 song

    On Air

    Hallelujah (feat. Choir! Choir! Choir!)

    12 songs

    On Air

    Out of the Game

    12 songs

    On Air

    Out of the Game

    12 songs

    On Air

    All Days Are Nights: Songs for Lulu

    12 songs

    On Air

    Release the Stars

    14 songs

    On Air

    Want One

    13 songs

    On Air

    Poses

    12 songs

    On Air

    Rufus Wainwright

    32 songs

    On Air

    Want Two

    34 songs

    On Air

    Vibrate: The Best of Rufus Wainwright [Deluxe Edition]

    28 songs

    On Air

    Want One [Deluxe Edition]

    1 song

    On Air

    Kiss and Say Goodbye

    18 songs

    On Air

    Vibrate: The Best of Rufus Wainwright

    10 songs

    On Air

    Milwaukee at Last!!!

    27 songs

    On Air

    Rufus Does Judy at Carnegie Hall [Live At Carnegie Hall]

    16 songs

    On Air

    Live from the Artist's Den

    13 songs

    On Air

    Rufus Wainwright: Live from the Artists Den

    13 songs

    On Air

    Poses [LP]

    12 songs

    On Air

    Rufus Wainwright [LP]

    13 songs

    On Air

    Release the Stars [UK]

    29 songs

    On Air

    Want

    20 songs

    On Air

    All I Want

    14 songs

    On Air

    Want Two [Bonus Tracks]

See All Albums

Top Songs by
Rufus Wainwright

  1.   Song
    Popularity
  2.   Cigarettes and Chocolate Milk
  3.   Hallelujah
  4.   Across the Universe
  5.   Beauty Mark
  6.   I Don't Know What It Is
  7.   Out of the Game
  8.   Poses
  9.   Going to a Town
  10.   One Man Guy
  11.   Baby, It's Cold Outside by Sharon Van Etten
  12.   Spotlight on Christmas
  13.   April Fools
  14.   Foolish Love
  15.   California
  16.   Complainte de la Butte
  17.   Gay Messiah
  18.   Martha
  19.   Pretty Things
  20.   Greek Song
  21.   14th Street
  22.   Release the Stars
  23.   Slideshow
  24.   Nobody's off the Hook
  25.   The One You Love
  26. See All Songs

Stations & Shows Featuring
Rufus Wainwright

    On Air

    Pride

    On Air

    Dylan's Offspring

    On Air

    Hipster Holiday

    On Air

    Mother's Day

    On Air

    Indie Coffee House

    On Air

    Sara Bareilles: I Am The DJ

    On Air

    Café Acoustic

    On Air

    Coffee House

    On Air

    Eclectic Rock

    On Air

    Indie Chill

    On Air

    Rock The Halls

    On Air

    The Current


Artists Related to
Rufus Wainwright

On Air

Eric Matthews

On Air

Sondre Lerche

On Air

Richard Hawley

On Air

Tori Amos

On Air

Jeff Buckley

On Air

Badly Drawn Boy

On Air

Julian Velard

On Air

David Gray

On Air

Ed Harcourt

On Air

Ben Folds

On Air

Scott Matthew

On Air

Michael J. Sheehy

On Air

Belle And Sebastian