And looking at them Jesus said to them, “With people this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” (Matthew 19:26)
If you are an avid Spotify listener, you know there are an array of genre for everyone’s listening pleasure. A couple of days ago this duo’s song got my attention. Black Violin is an American hip hop duo from Fort Lauderdale, Florida comprising two classically trained string instrumentalists, Kevin Sylvester and Wilner Baptiste, who go by the stage names Kev Marcus and Wil B. Kev Marcus plays the violin, and Wil B. plays the viola.
For over a decade, the classical-meets-hip-hop duo has steadily built a devoted following — culminating in two sold-out shows at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts with the National Symphony Orchestra commemorating the 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s death.
Wil B is the stage name of Wilner Baptiste. Baptiste originally wanted to play saxophone but learned the viola as it was the only instrument available in class. According to a 2012 interview, Baptiste stated: “I stuck with the viola and it opened a lot of doors for me.” Baptiste went on to attend Florida State University on a full scholarship.
Kev Marcus is the stage name of Kevin Sylvester. Of his early years, Sylvester stated in a 2012 interview: “I didn’t want to be the violinist in my neighborhood.” According to Sylvester, in the fifth grade: “I got into a little trouble…and my mom said she needed me to get into something, so she took me to Saturday morning violin class.” Sylvester went on to attend Florida International University (FIU) on a full scholarship.