It’s rare to find a classical music duo crossover as successful as Brooklyn Duo. However, since they formed in 2014, their inventive arrangements and live streams have propelled them to fame across the internet. Brooklyn Duo is made up of pianist Marnie Laird and her husband Patrick on the cello, both from New York, USA – as their name suggests.
They both attended music school, Marnie went to Juilliard, and Patrick studied at Eastman. After they graduated, they both worked as professional musicians. Marnie was the principal pianist at the New World Symphony in Miami, and Patrick chose a less conventional path and helped to found the cello rock band Break of Reality. Check out this version of Take On Me, which has over 7 million views. The video was made at the prestigious Carnegie Hall and was recorded live.
Even after they met in 2006, the pair continued their separate careers. They became a couple and married in 2012, but it wasn't until 2014 that their musical lives intertwined. Just for fun, the couple decided to arrange and record covers of two pop songs. They chose John Legend's All of Me and Shakira's Empire and uploaded them to YouTube.
In the biggest stroke of beginner's luck ever, Shakira herself saw the cover and gave them a shout out to her huge fanbase. Unsurprisingly this brought in a huge number of views and positive comments, and so they decided to continue. The rest is history! They have since released more than 100 videos and received other comments from the original artists.
Over the last eight years, Brooklyn Duo has released an impressive ten albums of their unique arrangements to date. They cater for all musical tastes and have covered everyone from Coldplay to Metallica to Taylor Swift. Many of their tracks have been listened to millions of times on Spotify, and they have over 600,000 monthly listeners. Their music is also available for download on Apple Music, but as Apple doesn't publish a download count, it's harder to know how many fans they have.
On a personal note, Brooklyn Duo became first a trio and then a quartet! Marnie and Patrick have welcomed two children into their lives. Baby Emerson, Emmie for short, was born on September 29th 2017 and was joined by her brother Archie in February 2020. It's clear that the duo loves making music, as they recorded a new video mere days before Marnie went into labour with Archie. Perhaps that's the secret of their success.
The pair currently have 1.26 million subscribers on YouTube, and almost all of their videos exceed 500k views. Their most popular video, Pachelbel's Canon, has been viewed a jaw-dropping 54 million times! It seems that the internet loves their take on popular hits. Due to their popularity, their net worth is estimated at between $500,000 and $1,000,000.
That should certainly be enough for them to provide for their family. However, Brooklyn Duo seems to be a labour of love and a way for the couple to share their love of music with each other, their children, and the rest of the world. If you haven't listened to them before, check them out now.