Genre-bending hip hop artist Josh Vietti in Janesville Jan. 24

Online Staff Report

JANESVILLE, Wis. — The worlds of classical music and hip hop are going to collide at Blackhawk Technical College (BTC) when the school hosts a very different kind of concert. Dubbed a modern Mozart by the Los Angeles Times, nationally acclaimed hip hop violinist Josh Vietti will perform at BTC from noon to 1 p.m., Jan. 24, on the central campus, within the Commons area.

Josh is a one-of-a-kind artist,” said Stephanie Williams, student services coordinator. “We are thrilled to be able to bring him to BTC. It’s a rare opportunity not to be missed.”

A music prodigy, Vietti began playing the violin when he was 4. Three years later, he was the youngest applicant to earn one of the coveted scholarships with the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s Mischa Lefkowtiz.

As a teen-ager, Vietti began performing on the Third Street Promenade in Santa Monica, Calif. Turning the seaside city center into his personal concert hall proved to be a stroke of genius. The virtuoso reportedly sold nearly 50,000 demo CDs from the trunk of his car.

It’s hard to describe me,” Vietta said. “I’m not a singer. I’m not a rapper. A lot of the old-school music industry, producers, executives, said to me, ‘How can we market this?’ But it pretty much crosses all genres, ethnicities, ages and everybody loves it.”

Vietti has come a long way since working the Promenade. Last year, CBS-Los Angeles named Vietti one of 2012’s Best Breakout Artists. Recently, he has appeared on the Ellen DeGeneres Show, opened for R&B recording artist Ne-Yo and multi-Grammy-winners and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees Earth, Wind & Fire, and completed a nationwide 140-date college tour.

Following Vietti’s performance, he will be available for a short period to sign autographs and take pictures.

BTC is at 1740 U.S. 14, Janesville, Wis., and can be reached at (608) 743-4470.

Posted Jan. 23, 2013

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