Award winning songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Graeme James (New Zealand) teams up with American Idol finalist Alex Preston for a captivating folk performance. Each armed with a whole host of instruments including electric violin, guitar, bass, baritone ukulele, mandolin, harmonica and even beatboxing, this performance will astound audiences.
About Graeme James
Graeme James started out playing violin as a seven year old with the desire to become a classical concert violinist. He pursued this goal throughout high school as well as branching out into folk and celtic music, playing fiddle and singing in his family’s folk band playing local festivals and events. After years of playing in local and national youth orchestras Graeme left secondary school to study to be a Primary School Teacher. It was while he was at university in Palmerston North that he put down the violin and started learning other instruments, the most significant of which being the acoustic guitar which enabled him to start writing and playing his own songs.
However, it wasn’t until he bought a loop pedal in 2010 that everything started to come together.
In desperate need of some cash to repair his car while on a New Year holiday in 2012, Graeme hit the streets of Gisborne for his first ever loop pedal busking session and the response from the public was so positive he was back on the road in two days.
A major breakthrough came later that summer in Queenstown, as he would play nightly, busking concerts to crowds of 200-300 people by the lakefront. This started to gather what would become a large, loyal and global fan base. On the recommendation of a fellow street performer Graeme decided to record an album of these quirky covers.
The self-released album “Play one we all know” was released in 2013 followed by “Play one we all know Vol. II” in late 2014. The latter was funded through a kickstarter campaign that met its $5000.00 target in 27 hours. Both cover albums have sold thousands of copies while busking on the streets of New Zealand.
Graeme had always written his own songs, but it wasn’t until 2015 that he began performing them live and his original material was met with immediate interest from fans. His first single ‘Alive’ was released in late 2015 and ended up placing second in a major international songwriting competition and has gone on to accumulate nearly 2 million streams on Spotify.
About Alex Preston
American Idol was just the beginning….
Alex Preston is a 23-year-old singer-songwriter from New Hampshire who has been involved in music since he was four years old. He plays over twelve instruments, ranging from the guitar to the violin, and writes his own music.
What sets Alex apart from other artists is his total sense of self, drawing the audience in and making them feel what he is projecting. Keith Urban put it best saying, “What I love about your performances, they always hold my attention. It’s very raw and it’s fragile. It’s very real. You don’t ever phone it in, you’re always in the moment…man, I love your artistry.”
His lyrics always come from the heart but it’s the way he delivers them that truly captivates people. Alex was the second runner-up on the thirteenth season of American Idol in 2014, which launched his career to new heights. Alex has performed all over the United States and Canada perfecting his craft and working with some of the top names in music.
This opportunity allowed Alex to work and interact with artists such as Jason Mraz, Randy Jackson, Jennifer Lopez, Harry Connick Jr, Keith Urban, Aloe Blacc, Ariana Grande, Demi Lovato, Fall Out Boy, Zooey Deschanel, Magic, Phillip Phillips, O.A.R, Christina Perri, Backstreet Boys, Gavin DeGraw, Of Monsters and Men, and many more. Alex’s debut CD, which he recorded in a cabin in the Sierra Nevada Mountains was released in 2015. His debut single in 2014, which sold more than 100,000 copies, has received praise from the likes of Keith Urban, Kevin Jonas, J Lo and many more.
Coffee and Cabernet Series
The Coffee and Cabernet Series at Pruis Hall includes 15 world music performances within genres including Celtic, Blues, Bluegrass, Jazz, Americana, Swing, Folk, etc. Experience these internationally renowned artists in the intimate setting of Pruis Hall at the heart of Ball State University and enjoy a selection of wine or coffee bar while attending the performance. See a list of performances in this series here.
Pruis Hall is situated just off of Woodworth drive next to Bracken Library. This 640-seat venue provides an intimate setting for musical performances and is used to host a variety of special events throughout the school year. Emens Auditorium programs this series of talented musical artists at Pruis Hall.
How to Purchase Tickets
Tickets go on sale Monday, August 6, 2018 at 10 a.m.
Ways to Purchase:
Emens box office
OR Online at Ticketmaster.com
For More Information
Learn more about coming to a show. (Directions, Parking, Accessibility, Camera Policy, etc.)
For more information call the Emens box office at 765-285-1539.
Dates/times subject to change.