Bryson Tiller’s young career has been punctuated with awards and highlights for his recorded music – BET awards for best male R&B/pop artist and best new artist – and more than 50 million listens to his first hit, “Don’t,” on Soundcloud. Unfortunately, they have overshadowed his impressive live performance achievements.
Tiller sold out 8,500 tickets at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco and nearly sold out two shows at Radio City Music Hall. His two-night stay at Webster Hall in New York City also sold out, as have shows from Las Vegas to Minneapolis to Boston.
It’s to be expected for the 23-year-old at the forefront of “trap soul” – a rap/soulful marriage between R&B and hip-hop and which has skyrocketed the Louisville, Ky., native to the top of the alt-R&B scene.
Tiller – who has already been nicknamed “Pen Griffey” – honed his talents in high school, crooning for female classmates and recording his first songs in a friend’s DIY studio. He borrowed $600 from a friend for essentials like a mic, mic stand, filter and laptop, uploading finished products to SoundClick. He released “Don’t,” in October 2014, a self-recorded and mixed in his living room. The video game/comic book fan with a 2-year-old daughter says a Forbes article, “Six Ways To Achieve Any Goal,” helped propel him to his current success.
Tiller was also nominated for two MTV Video Music Awards, including best male video where he went up against winner Drake. Drizzy offered to sign Tiller to his OVO label but Tiller went with RCA instead, which released his album Trapsoul in October last year.
Tiller is winding down his summer touring, courtesy of the Cara Lewis Group, but will visit several festivals, including Bumbershoot in Seattle and CityFolk Music Festival in Ottawa, Ontario, in September and Meadows And Music Arts Festival in Queens Village, N.Y., in October.