Observations: Blowing sax, not bubbles

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The Independent Culture

Tyler Rix has put his dazzling football career on hold to pursue an equally dazzling musical career. The 16-year-old saxophone star has just been signed to Universal records for £1m. Since the age of eight, Rix has been playing football for the West Ham United Academy, where Bobby Moore, Rio Ferdinand, Joe Cole and Frank Lampard learnt their trade. But he was spotted on the BBC2 talent show, Classical Star, in 2007. Though he didn't make the final, the tall, spiky-haired teenager from north London is now releasing his debut record, Ascent, an atmospheric album, with choral and string arrangements and soaring saxophone melodies.

Rix doesn't come from a musical family: his dad fits TV aerials. But since he picked up a saxophone at primary school at the age of nine, he has been at the top of that league. He was awarded the saxophone scholarship at London's Junior Guildhall last year. "There aren't that many classical saxophonists to inspire me. I want to be the person that people look up to and want to listen to," says Rix. "I always want to get the best out of everything I do, and make myself a winner." He hasn't ruled out football, either.

'Ascent' is out on 26 January on Universal