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Beck Hansen (born Bek David Campbell; July 8, 1970), better known by his stage name Beck, is an American musician, singer, songwriter, rapper, record producer, and multi-instrumentalist. He rose to fame in the early 1990s with his experimental and lo-fi style, and became known for creating musical collages of wide genre styles. Today, he musically encompasses folk, funk, soul, hip hop, electronic, alternative rock, country, and psychedelia. He has released 13 studio albums (3 of which were independently released), as well as several non-album singles and a book of sheet music.
Born in Los Angeles in 1970, Beck grew towards hip-hop and folk in his teens and began to perform locally at coffeehouses and clubs. He moved to New York City in 1989 and became involved in the city’s small and fiery anti-folk movement. Returning to Los Angeles in the early 1990s, he cut his breakthrough single “Loser,” which became a worldwide hit in 1994, and released his first major album, Mellow Gold, the same year. Odelay, released in 1996, topped critic polls and won several awards. He released the psychedelic Mutations in 1998, and the funk-infused Midnite Vultures in 1999. The soft-acoustic Sea Change in 2002 showcased a more serious Beck, and 2005’s Guero returned to Odelay‘s sample-based production. The Information in 2006 was inspired by electro-funk, hip hop, and psychedelia; 2008’s Modern Guilt was inspired by ’60s pop music; and 2014’s folk-infused Morning Phase won Album of the Year at the 57th Grammy Awards on February 8, 2015. His thirteenth studio album, Colors, was released in October 2017 after a long production process, and won awards for Best Alternative Album and Best Engineered Album at the 61st Annual Grammy Awards.
With a pop art collage of musical styles, oblique and ironic lyrics, and postmodern arrangements incorporating samples, drum machines, live instrumentation and sound effects, Beck has been hailed by critics and the public throughout his musical career as being among the most idiosyncratically creative musicians of 1990s and 2000s alternative rock. Two of Beck’s most popular and acclaimed recordings are Odelay and Sea Change, both of which were ranked on Rolling Stone‘s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. The four-time platinum artist has collaborated with several artists and has made several contributions to soundtracks.