"Cellist Joshua McClain composes songs that make listeners feel like they’re in another world."
-Jenee Darden, KALW Public Radio
Joshua McClain is a renowned cellist, composer, artist, and filmmaker based in Oakland, CA. He is best known for his unbridled style of cello playing which, using a looping pedal and effects processor, creates intense, otherworldly soundscapes. Joshua created a highly popular free live stream concert series during the Pandemic of 2020, called "Morning Cello," which has reached millions of people all over the world.
Regarded as one of the top artists in the Bay Area, Joshua won Musician of the Year in San Francisco at the Raw Artist RAWAwards showcase in 2013. His album, Coming Home, was nominated for an Independent Music Award for Best Contemporary Classical Album. He has shared the stage with Thievery Corporation, Aj Croce, Over the Rhine, Blame Sally, Gordi, Dagmar, and others.
Joshua released his most recent album, Coming Home, in February 2018 with critical acclaim. Coming Home is a concept album based on the archetype of the "Hero's Journey". The album was inspired by a month long ayahuasca retreat with Shipibo shamans in the jungle's of the Peruvian Amazon for the treatment of depression and post-traumatic stress. Joshua has since focused his approach on how music and sound can be a catalyst for change.
While I watched McClain play in the studio, waves of sound—warm and reassuring—washed over me; their undertow pulled me closer, figuratively, to the instrument, and drew me into the heaving sighs of the music."
-Derk Richardson, KPFA Radio
In March of 2016 Joshua collaboratively released a full-length album with 6 time Emmy winning songwriter, Monica Pasqual titled, Is Fortune a Wheel. He again appeared on Pasqual's most recent 2019 release of You Can't Kill Light.
Joshua's style is deeply influenced by the music of Andrew Bird, Zoe Keating, Mark Summer, Yo-Yo Ma, Sigur Rós, Dirty Three, Jimmy Hendrix, Max Richter, Yann Tiersen, and Hans Zimmer, among others.
Joshua has toured and performed extensively in North America as well as Germany, France, Japan, West Africa, and Argentina.