Andrew Bird first picked up a violin at age four and proceeded to spend his formative years soaking up classical repertoire completely by ear. As a teen, Bird mastered the sounds of early jazz, country blues, and gypsy music. All these influences still percolate within Bird'sbrand of pop, but he has established a sound that is distinctly his own.
Since 1997, the Chicago-based composer and multi-instrumentalist has released 11 albums, garnering a devoted following with his early band Bowl of Fire and as a member of the avant-garde swing band the Squirrel Nut Zippers before venturing out with his first solo record, 2003's Weather Systems. It was with this release that Bird began using a looping pedal to combine densely-layered symphonies onstage and revealed his unearthly talent for whistling. He has since played such prestigious venues as New York's Beacon Theater and Carnegie Hall, Bonnaroo, Coachella, the Austin City Limits Festival, the Hollywood Bowl, and Bumbershoot; in 2008 Bird had 15,000 fans overflowing from Chicago's Millennium Park for his largest ever headlining performance.