You’ll be astounded at what Rob Landes can do with a violin.
The Rice University-educated violinist has created a unique and modern sound like you’ve never heard before.
He will perform on stage at the Charles Bender Performing Arts Center in Humble on Saturday, Jan. 13, 7 p.m. Tickets are $15.
Landes uses a “loop pedal,” a contraption that guitarists have been using for years to transform themselves into a one-person band.
“I saw a violist using it on YouTube a few years ago and it blew my mind,” Landes confesses. “I didn’t know what it was but I had to get one.”
A “loop pedal” allows Landes to record short passages then play them back in a repeating loop while he plays his violin. He can then create complex rhythms and harmonies while he performs.
Rice Grad brings his innovative fiddle playing to The Bender on January 13
The result is that The Bender audience on Jan. 13 will enjoy distinctive music from the last 50 years – pop and classic rock – all performed solely and uniquely by Landes.
“I’ve got some interesting music on my play list,” Landes says. “The Bender audience will hear me perform Led Zeppelin’s "Stairway to Heaven," AC/DC’s "Thunderstruck" and White Stripes’ "Seven Nation Army.""
Landes also will perform some familiar classical tunes such as Pachelbel’s “Canon in D,” probably one of American’s most recognizable classical melodies.
“It was written for three violins and cello but, thanks to the ‘loop pedal,’ you’ll hear me play all the parts,” he said.
Landes is a native of Utah, one of eight very musical brothers and sisters, who has been playing violin since he was three, gave his first solo recital at 10, has performed in the Hollywood Bowl and with the Disney Young Musicians Symphony Orchestra, soloed with the Utah Symphony and the San Diego Chamber Orchestra and at Carnegie Hall.
How did he end up at Rice University?
“I met some students from Rice when I attended a music festival in Massachusetts,” Landes recalls. “They raved about Rice. I learned that Rice is considered one of the Top 5 music schools in the country and that there were many Julliard students who finished up their degrees at Rice as well as Julliard professors who came to Rice to teach.”
Landes moved back to Utah after earning his master’s degree in music performance. Since then, he’s performed at New York Fashion Week, the Sundance Film Festival, toured internationally, earned nearly 30 million views on his YouTube channel and signed with ARK Studios Media Group.
Landes has numerous “irons in the fire.” He’s working with a manufacturing company to develop an affordable yet high-quality violin. He’s about to launch an online violin school for students of all ages who want to learn to play the violin. He continues to perform throughout the USA in shows, corporate events and weddings, and he’ll soon embark on a tour performing in the United Kingdom.
But first, he brings his violin, loop pedal and creativity to The Bender on Jan. 13.
“I have a sister who lives in Spring so I’ll be arriving a couple days early to catch up on family, visit with some of my great friends from Rice and, frankly, eat a lot of TexMex. I sure miss Houston. I miss all the friendly people I met while I was in school. And I really miss your TexMex food,” Landes confessed.
Sample the creativity of Rob Landes and his violin by visiting his website, and his YouTube channel, . Be sure to watch him perform with another Rice graduate, pianist Christopher McKiggan, in some very creative and musical YouTube videos.
Rob Landes will have his violin and his loop pedal on The Bender stage on Jan. 13. For tickets or for more information about Landes or coming events at The Bender, call 281-4l46-4140, go online to , or log onto Facebook at Charles Bender Performing Arts Center.