Monday, September 21, 2009

William Fitzsimmons

I feel as though I have bit off more than I can chew with this week’s artist. My good friend Allegra suggested him to me a few weeks ago. She had started listening to this guy William Fitzsimmons and wanted to find out more about her new favorite artist. As I have mentioned before, she and I have very similar taste in music so if she likes something I know I will too. So I looked into Fitzsimmons, read his bio, and realized this was not an artist that I could figure out. His upbringing is so unique that you know without a doubt what has shaped him into the artist his is today. So rather than making any of my own assumptions I’m going to just give you some facts.

William Fitzsimmons is the youngest child of two blind parents. His parents, since they were blind, brought in a large selection of musical instruments including a full pipe organ that his father built into the house. His childhood was spent filled with sounds and music as well as an education on the greats of folk music. James Taylor, Joni Mitchell and Bob Dylan of course were some of the few. Of course to me this sounds like the greatest upbringing to a music lover like myself. I grew up in a home where music was rarely played with the exception of classical, a little Julio Iglesias and Neil Diamond. Where my music makes my dad “nervous” and is just the “same notes over and over.” My love and taste in music came from God knows where but was definitely not born in the home like Fitzsimmons. This upbringing does have his affects as he is described as one of the oddest people you will ever meet and struggles with social skills and the art of shaving… His beard reminds me of the creepy guy in the small town who all the children are afraid of until one day he saves your life and turns out to be just a weird but good person. I’m pretty sure a guy like that is in every movie.

Though Fitzsimmons was raised on music it was not the career he pursued. Here is where he gets even more interesting to me. He actually pursued a career working with the mentally ill in the mental health industry. It takes a special person to want to work with the mentally ill and apparently he was one of them. William became a practicing therapist but music was calling him back. Now he incorporates therapy and music singing about things he believes matter most.

Fitzsimmons released his first album, Until We Are Ghosts, in 2005 and the next year released Goodnight. Both albums were self produced until his most recent album, The Sparrow and the Crow, released in 2008 which is his first studio recorded album. My favorite track is the first on our playlist and is off the newest album. It is a duo with a currently unknown but familiar sounding female, which is probably why I love it so much. I cannot get enough of male/female duos! I was only able to upload two tracks this week due to technical difficulties so I added a coupleto the old flash player. Fitzsimmons reminds me of Peter Bradley Adams who used to be a part of the duo Eastmountainsouth that tragically is no more. So if you like this music checkout Adams and Eastmountainsouth.

I hope you enjoyed this week’s feature. Please let me know what you think as comments our welcome. I also love new music suggestions and as my friend now knows, those suggestions just might become one of my features. Also, if you have an artist or band that you love you can write your own blurb and become one of our midweek features!


Allegra said...

behind every good artist, there is a reason for the inspiration and most definitely mystery! i love the music even more now!

Jarrod Haggard said...

I definitely wouldn't classify him as lacking social skills. Yeah, the beard is pretty creepy, but have you ever been to one of his shows? He is honestly one of the funniest people I've ever met! It's great because he basically says that since the music is sad enough on it's own, he doesn't have to be all depressed about it. It truly was like going to a comedy club with musical interludes.

The guy is hilarious, witty, and insightful, I highly recommend watching a live concert because it will definitely change your perception of his personality!

Mary Young said...

Thanks for the info Jarrod! Yea, I would love to see him live. The info on his social skills came from his webpage so who knows.