Victor Wainwright (born February 4, 1981) is an American singer, songwriter, and pianist. In 2013 and 2014, Wainwright won the 'Pinetop Perkins Piano Player of the Year' at the Blues Music Award ceremonies. Also in 2013, his collaborative album, Easy Livin' , made the Top 10 in the US Billboard Top Blues Album chart.
Wainwright's musical style was described by the American Blues Scene magazine in 2013 as "honky-tonk and boogie, with a dose of rolling thunder. Wainwright's playing is simply beautiful madness."
Living Blues magazine noted that "Wainwright serves as an electrifying guide to a good time - spinning tales, telling his listeners how to beat the blues, and meticulously conjuring raw soul and energy out of his acoustic piano."
Wainwright currently tours both nationally and internationally, performing with two bands: Southern Hospitality and Victor Wainwright and the Wild Roots.
Life and career:
Victor Lawton Wainwright, Jr. was born in Savannah, Georgia, United States. Both his father and grandfather were blues musicians, and became Wainwright's early mentors, along with family friend Pinetop Perkins. At the age of 10 at a family gathering, Wainwright played "Für Elise". Wainwright's own ensemble backed Eric Culberson at the Savannah Blues Bar, during the former's high school years. Wainwright later attended college in Daytona Beach, Florida, and undertook an Air Traffic Management and Psychology degree at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, before relocating to Memphis, Tennessee. He then worked as an air traffic controller at Memphis International Airport.
In 2004, Wainwright met Stephen Dees in Ormond Beach, Florida. The latter was part of Novo Combo in the early 1980s. The meeting led to Dees co-writing and producing Wainwright's debut album, Piana from Savannah (2005).
In 2008, Wainwright played alongside the Reverend Billy C. Wirtz on Wirtz' live album Pianist Envy - Group Therapy. In September 2009, Wainwright's second album, Beale Street to the Bayou, was released by Wild Roots Records, with Wainwright's backing band, which included Dees, billed as the WildRoots.
In October 2010, Wainwright appeared at Dark Season Blues in Norway. In 2011, he performed at the South Florida Boogie Woogie Piano Festival. In June that year, Lit Up! was released, again credited to Victor Wainwright and the WildRoots. He also performed at Springing the Blues in Jacksonville Beach, Florida, plus at Memphis in May in 2012. The same year he was nominated for the first time for a Blues Music Award.
Following an impromptu jam session in July 2011 in Florida, Wainwright teamed up with Damon Fowler, J.P. Soars, Chuck Riley, and Chris Peet to form the band that would eventually become Southern Hospitality. Their first gig was supporting Buddy Guy in August the same year at the Heritage Music Blues Fest in Wheeling, West Virginia. Their debut album, Easy Livin' , (2013) was produced by Tab Benoit, and released by Blind Pig Records. It peaked at No. 9 on the US Billboard Top Blues Album chart. In 2014, Wainwright won the 'Pinetop Perkins Piano Player of the Year' award at the Blues Music Awards for the second consecutive year.
In October 2014, Wainwright appeared at the Daytona Blues Festival.
Wainwright currently lives in Memphis, Tennessee.
Text from this biography licensed under creative commons license