When you hear the name Josh Groban, you’ll most likely think of an iconic voice. But there are a few things most of us don’t know about the world-renowned singer.
He’s sold over 30 million albums worldwide. And as if he hasn’t accomplished enough, Groban has also begun acting and his philanthropic contributions are astounding.
Groban’s wide range of talents have taken him far and wide. But you may be shocked to know where he started and how he’s come so far.
I’ve always assumed it to be true, but now we know for certain: Josh Groban is a Christian. And if you meet him in person, you’ll quickly realize that he’s unashamed to tell you so.
In a world consumed with greed and obsessed with success, Josh Groban sets a different example. Groban reminds the world that there is another way; his life paints a beautiful picture of what happens when you live to give, instead of receive.
Joshua Winslow Groban was born on February 27, 1981, in Los Angeles, California. Groban and his younger brother, Chris, were raised by their Jewish father, Jack Groban who was a businessman, and their Norwegian mother, Lindy Groban who was a teacher.
Despite his Jewish roots, Groban was raised in a Christian household and attended an Episcopalian Church.
Groban shares. “My dad converted when he married my mom, actually, to Christianity, but his whole family’s side is Jewish, so I do have that whole history with my family.”
Groban’s father was an accomplished pianist and his grandmother attended Juilliard, but Groban’s interest in music was discovered all on his own. He was a natural-born prodigy, and it’s safe to say that Groban’s parents fully supported his love for music.
At an early age, Groban had a great respect for music and was often found singing and creating his own melodies around the house. Groban picked up piano all on his own; a self-taught star was in the making.
Groban shared, “I sang all my life. My parents had me singing around the house when I was younger. I’m not from a showbiz family or anything. It’s just something I enjoyed doing.”
The young man was undeniably talented. But despite his God-given gift, Groban struggled through school and was extremely lonely and insecure.
Groban shared, “My school life was very much a wandering experience. I was having trouble in school and I was not making a lot of friends. I was intensely aware that the things I valued weren’t shared by anyone. Girls didn’t like me and I had few friends. So coming home and actually improvising on the piano and just coming up with melodies was an escape for me.”
God’s plans for the young musician began to reveal themselves while Groban was in the 7th grade at Bridges Academy. While there, Groban began taking theater classes and his talent didn’t go unnoticed.
It didn’t take long for Groban’s God-given voice to catch his teacher’s attention. He was soon selected for a solo performance of “S’wonderful” at the school’s Cabaret Night– his first of many solos.
The night of 12-year-old Josh Groban’s big debut had finally arrived, but his family didn’t even recognize him. Before them stood a fearless and confident young man. When they finally realized it was him, they were moved to tears. The young prodigy had finally found his calling.
After that night, Groban knew music was the path he was destined to walk. At 16 he enrolled in the Interlochen Arts Program. The stars aligned when he was placed under the vocal coach Seth Riggs. Riggs was good friends with David Foster– a famous producer, writer and arranger.
In 1998, something told Riggs to send Groban’s powerful rendition of the song, “All I Ask of You” to his buddy Foster. Foster was thoroughly impressed and from that point on, he took 17-year-old Groban under his wing. After years of practicing and hard work, Groban had gotten his first big break.
The relationship with Foster launched Groban’s career. Although he began as a rehearsal singer, he was performing at events that the typical “starving musician” could only dream of such as: the inauguration of California governor, Grey Davis, as well as the Grammy Awards.
Foster played a major role in Groban landing a record deal with Warner Bros. This was the stepping stone to becoming enrolled at Carnegie Mellon University. However, it didn’t take long for him to drop out of school to pursue once in a lifetime opportunities.
Groban’s dream became a reality when he made his first recording debut on the soundtrack of the 2001 Steven Spielberg movie A.I.: Artificial Intelligence with the song “For Always,” which he performed with Lara Fabian.
In 2001, Groban released his first self-titled album and it went double platinum and eventually sold over four million copies worldwide.
The success of the album led to Groban’s own special on PBS. And before long the young singer was performing at prestigious events such as the Nobel Peace Prize Concert in Oslo, Norway and the closing ceremonies of the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics. It was safe to say that Groban had made it; and this was only the tip of the iceberg.
He rode the wave of the achievements of his first album for 2 years and at that point he released his second album Closer. The release of this album caused quite a stir and he launched his first world tour. Venues sold out in every city and his albums were flying off the shelves like hotcakes.
To date, Groban has released 7 Studio Albums, 4 Live Albums, 2 Compilation Albums, and dozens of featured tracks. But his success in music is not all that he’s is known for.
Groban is now dabbling in the acting scene and he isn’t too shabby. Groban has been featured on several tv shows playing himself and has a few big screen roles.
He shared, “When it comes to the acting stuff, I like to show up for a couple days and kind of be outrageous and silly, and go back to my day job.I got to play a real D-bag lawyer, and comb my hair really awfully and kiss Emma Stone, so it was a really wonderful day on set.”
But despite his unprecedented success in all arenas, Groban remains humble and determined to make a positive difference in the world. Groban has performed at countless charity concerts such as the The Heart Foundation Gala, We Are The World 25 for Haiti, as well as with the African Children’s Choir on American Idol’s “Idol Gives Back” episode.
For Groban’s 27th birthday his fans set out to raise $27,000 for a project called “Raise 27”. Collectively they raised $44,227 for the Josh Groban Foundation, to benefit the Siyawela orphanage in South Africa.
Josh described it as, “The best birthday present ever.”
The man himself donated $150,000 to fund music education. He also was a part of Global Poverty Project‘s “Live Below the Line” campaign, which consists in living on $1.50 a day to raise awareness of extreme poverty around the world.
But not only does Josh Groban have a heart of gold, but also a great sense of humor. Based on his genre of music, you’d probably never assume he’s such a funny guy.
And contrary to most men in the entertainment industry, Groban is a romantic at heart and you won’t find him causing drama in the tabloids.
Groban revealed, “I am a real romantic at heart. If I’m in a relationship, I’ll go to the ends of the earth. If I’m on the road and we have a conversation, and she says, ‘God, I really wish I was there with you right now’, I’ll hang up the phone, send a car, and have the plane ready.”
And above all else, Groban is a man of character. In fact, he recently caused quite a stir after walking off set and cancelling his interview with Jenny McCarthy. According to reports, the Christian singer was shocked by the content of the interview after learning that McCarthy had a raunchy list of questions lined up, such as “what kind of music do you listen to while love-making.”
Groban has always been very transparent about his faith and morals and The Christian Postreported that Groban simply decided that he didn’t want anything to do with the show once he realized where it was headed.
While the liberal media was quick to mock and ridicule Groban’s morals and “high standards” I can’t think of a more noble thing he could’ve done.
His powerful and unashamed renditions of “You Raise Me Up” and “The Prayer” have inspired thousands of Christians of all ages.
The 36-year-old has shared a stage with everyone from Barbra Streisand to Celine Dion. But despite his unparalleled success, countless awards, and undeniable talent; Josh Groban remains a humble man of faith who seeks to honor God instead of man; that is someone who’s truly worth admiring.
Praise God for amazing men in Hollywood like Josh Groban! While listening to Groban’s inspiring story, I just couldn’t help but think of Jeremiah 17:7 which reads,
“Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord and has made the Lord his hope and confidence.”
Please pray for Josh Groban as he continues to boldly shed light amidst the darkness of Hollywood.
Thank you Josh Groban for making this world a little brighter with not only with your God-given voice, but also your generous heart that cares so deeply for others. And thank you for sharing your inspiring message of hope in Jesus Christ! America needs more men of faith like Josh Groban, please share if you agree!