A Tribute to Harry Styles, a Musical Genius in His Own Right
The next Mick Jagger? David Bowie? More like an artist coming into his own, finding his own sound and making a name for himself on his own terms.
Harry Styles is having quite the 2017.
“Kiwi,” the latest single from his debut solo album is climbing international music charts. A little over a week into the release of its music video, it’s already reached 12 million views on YouTube. Scroll through to watch Styles outdo himself as Gucci menswear’s poster child. In the “Kiwi” MV, he recruits middle school kids and his adorable mini-me (who is also clad in head-to-toe custom Gucci) for a food fight in the gymnasium. Oh, and there are puppies. Let’s not forget the puppies.
Styles may be conquering the charts, but he’s just as busy conquering the stage in real life. He recently finished the first European leg of his first solo tour, and from Milan, it’s straight to Shanghai. Consider it a breather from tour life, but it’s an eventful side trip nonetheless: The 23-year-old is about to tick another thing off his bucketlist as he gears up to perform at the annual Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show. Leggy VS models and angels are set to share the runway with Grammy award-winning R&B singer Miguel, actor and singer Leslie Odom Jr., Chinese popstar Jane Zhang and of course, Harry Styles.
2017 is one whirlwind year considering all we’ve covered are bits and pieces of his November, but Styles is showing no signs of slowing down; he’s booked solid until July 14, 2018.
His current state of success (it’s also worth noting that the X-Factor alum and former boyband member is just getting started) is not purely the outcome of calculated PR moves or a manufactured image. Styles is the real deal. Just stream videos of his concert performances and you’ll see. He has the vocal chops to back up stage presence, charm to back up his good looks and musical know-how to solidify his place in the industry.
Evident influences are there (Mick Jagger and David Bowie to name a few), but there’s no point comparing: Harry Styles is here to be no one else but Harry Styles. Here, an appreciation post dedicated to the modern-day musical genius:
#1: Harry Styles was already putting in the work and was part of a band before joining The X Factor U.K.
In high school, Styles sang lead vocals for pop-punk band White Eskimo. They’d perform at school concerts, family events and film their garage sessions.
#2: His hit single “Sign of the Times” earned high praise and is said to be “50 years of British rock history in one song”.
“Throughout the song's nearly six-minute run time, the memories of British rock history shoot off like fireworks —
spanning from late-period Beatles to Bowie to Listen Without Prejudice-era George Michael to Suede to Robbie Williams and even early Coldplay,” said music critic Andrew Unterberger. “It doesn't sound like a tribute to (or rip off of) any of these artists — it just sounds like someone who's grown up studying at the feet of all these titans and now wants to try his hand at joining their ranks. And to Styles' considerable credit, he basically succeeds: 'Sign of the Times' is as lighter-waving, arm-swaying, random-mate-hugging a power ballad as they come, sounding — as many have pointed out on Twitter on this somewhat apocalyptic-seeming of Fridays — like the appropriate montage soundtrack for the end of the world.”
#3: Styles sounds just as good live.
Sometimes, his live renditions sound even better compared to the studio version, which makes us twice as excited to catch him live when he takes his tour to Manila next year.
#4: On top of being a great performer, Styles is a talented lyricist.
He co-wrote One Direction’s “Stockholm Syndrome” and “Perfect” as well as Ariana Grande’s “Just A Little Bit Of Your Heart” to name a few.
#5: He knows how to play several musical instruments.
For kicks, Harry boasts he’s quite the kazoo player; he also plays the guitar, a bit of the drums and the piano.
Images via facebook.com/harrystyles