Bio

UK-based guitarist Nicolas Meier has carved a reputation out as one of the world's most original and uniquely talented guitarists. Drawing from a love of Turkish, Eastern & Middle Eastern music, Flamenco, Tango and more -- all mixed with jazz -- Meier's versatility and musical fluency extends well beyond that, even. (... so much so, that his considerable talents drew the attention of rock guitar legend, Jeff Beck, who made Nicolas a mainstay in The Jeff Beck Group -- carrying him on two world tours during the course of the last several years.)

 

Meier originally hails from Switzerland; born in 1973, to parents who are great lovers of the arts. Never short on ambition, Meier founded his own record label, MGP Records, in 2009. To date, he's produced twelve albums: as a solo artist; in various group formats (The Nicolas Meier Group; Nicolas Meier Trio; Eclectica!; Nicolas Meier World Group); with his heavy metal band, Seven7, and; in a duo format, with long-time partner, fellow guitarist and collaborator, the fabulous UK master, Pete Oxley. (Their 2015 release, "Chasing Tales," was a masterful, benchmark album, in the dual-guitar format.)

 

2017 was a breakthrough year: one in which Steve Vai's Favored Nations Records released Nicolas' brilliant solo album, "Infinity." The album was recorded in LA and performed in a trio format -- featuring fellow virtuosic veterans, Jimmy Haslip, on bass, and Vinnie Colaiuta on drums. Most recently, Nicolas has completed and released two new albums on MGP (Meier Group Productions): the already-well-received album new duo album with Pete Oxley, "The Alluring Ascent," and; (as of this writing) the just-released Nicolas Meier World Group's pristine effort, "Peaceful." Meier will support the new release with a 30-date UK tour; with European dates, early next year, followed by more US dates in the fall (of 2020).

 

Having made a lasting impression on gentlemen the likes of the great Bill Bruford, (the aforementioned) Jeff Beck and Steve Vai, Nicolas Meier is unquestionably one of today's most well-rounded, ambitious and masterful up-and-coming talents on guitar. Stay tuned ... this is one star that is still on the rise!

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UK-based guitarist Nicolas Meier has carved a reputation out as one of the world's most original and uniquely talented guitarists. Drawing from a love of Turkish, Eastern & Middle Eastern music, Flamenco, Tango and more -- all mixed with jazz -- Meier's versatility and musical fluency extends well beyond that, even. (... so much so, that his considerable talents drew the attention of rock guitar legend, Jeff Beck, who made Nicolas a mainstay in The Jeff Beck Group -- carrying him on two world tours during the course of the last several years.)

 

Meier originally hails from Switzerland. He was born in 1973, to parents who are great lovers of the arts, with wide-ranging musical tastes extending to the Classical, Jazz, Latin, Flamenco, Rock and, Pop genres. After picking up guitar at the age of 12, it was his father's gift of Joe Satriani’s legendary "Surfing with the Alien" and Tony MacAlpine’s "Maximum Security" (both, major intelligent rock "guitar-god" albums), shortly thereafter, that served as Nicolas' earliest motivation. Attending the Montreux Jazz Festival with his parents, while still a young teen, would further expand Nicolas' vision for guitar; with John McLaughlin, in particular, being of particular interest and inspiration.

 

Drawing from those diverse childhood inspirations, he pursued his passion. A true gypsy spirit with a disciplined maestro's touch, Nicolas has continued to grow and evolve: embracing a number of different cultures and studying their music forms, nuances and idiosyncrasies. (It was during his Eurasia travels, early in the new millennium, that Nicolas met his Turkish wife, Songul.)

 

Meier’s sound is rooted in his love of playing jazz on acoustic guitar, especially his Godin nylon-string guitar. It’s a sound that lends itself especially well to flamenco and middle-eastern music, also -- and conveniently so: as these influences, and more, are brilliantly fused in his unique multi-lingual style. He also plays fretless acoustic guitar, the Saz (a traditional Turkish stringed instrument), electric guitar, steel-string acoustic guitar, glissentar (an 11-stringed fretless insturment) and a baglama.

 

During the course of his unfolding career and global sojourns, Nicolas has been the recipient of numerous awards. A truly dedicated student of the instrument, he pursued advanced studies at Switzerland's prestigious Conservatoire de Fribourg, and subsequently earned a scholarship to Boston's illustrious Berklee College of Music. His burning passion for both rock and jazz persists to this day, something he partly credits to his teacher, Francis Coletta (at the Conservatoire de Fribourg), who, while inspiring a profound love of jazz and world music, encouraged the young man to transcribe rock solos, as well!

 

In fact, Meier is one of the rare musicians who plays both metal and jazz fluently, and has written books on both: "Heavy Metal, Part I: Rhythm Guitar," and; "Jazz, Part I: Chord Tones." When asked about his two seemingly divergent loves, Nicolas had this to say:

 

"I deeply love both styles. There is a magic in each style that the other one doesn’t have. I just love metal’s power and energy, and at the same time I love jazz’s deep emotion. Both styles can give high energy, but in different directions or different worlds."

 

His love for the rock genre was documented with his "progressive techno-metal" band, Seven's, potent and impressive debut: 2014's "The Follower" (MGP). Further documenting can be found on YouTube:

"Escapades"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mau7sY7JFTs

 

"Turkish Lights"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O87xKEglwRw

 

"Blast from the Past"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xpqzTa6Gi7M

 

"Blue Peaks"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m5HBMQ-1W98

 

During his time at Berklee, Nicolas immersed himself in classic American jazz (Parker; Coltrane; Miles; etc.), while performing primarily acoustic jazz and fusion. After graduation, he returned to Switzerland in 1998 and formed the Meier Group, a band that would quickly become popular European festival regulars. Naturally, he gravitated to Montreux, finding himself performing with the likes of Rachelle Ferrel, George Duke, Macy Gray and Will Calhoun, among others.

 

It wasn't long, though, before Meier found himself missing the vibrance and vitality of Boston. After considering possible relocations, he settled on London as the perfect destination for combining the energy of the US with a happening European music scene. Shortly after arriving in London, Nicolas met drummer Asaf Sirkis, whom he credits with helping open his ears to middle eastern music, as well as helping him find his feet in London. "He (Asaf) is such a passionate player that I just had to keep playing with him whenever I could. I met Gilad Atzmon through him, and many other great players."

 

Never short on ambition, Meier founded his own record label, MGP Records, in 2009. To date, he's produced twelve albums: as a solo artist; in various group formats (The Meier Group; Nicolas Meier Trio; Eclectica!; Nicolas Meier World Group); with his heavy metal band, Seven7, and; in a duo format, with long-time partner, fellow guitarist and collaborator, the fabulous UK master, Pete Oxley. (Their 2015 release, "Chasing Tales," was a masterful, benchmark album, in the dual-guitar format.)

 

2017 was a breakthrough year: one in which Steve Vai's Favored Nations Records released Nicolas' brilliant solo album, "Infinity." The album was recorded in LA and performed in a trio format -- featuring fellow virtuosic veterans, Jimmy Haslip, on bass, and Vinnie Colaiuta on drums. 

 

Thereafter, Nicolas toured Europe in 2017 with Dewa Bujana and Jimmy Haslip, in promotion of the "Infinity" album, as well as exploring new adventurous material from his maestro guitarist-composer counterpart (Budjana) -- producing an exotic jazz-prog-world music hybrid sonic elixir that stunned audiences everywhere.

 

In 2018, Meier returned to the Los Angeles area, as part of a 14-date western tour which provided the fresh challenge of several different trio lineups, culminating with the LA performance -- highlighted by icons Chad Wakerman, on drums, and Ric Fierabracci, on bass; and augmented by none other than the supreme rock guitar legend, Steve Vai.

 

Most recently, Nicolas has completed and released two new albums on MGP (Meier Group Productions): the already-well-received album new duo album with Pete Oxley, "The Alluring Ascent," and; (as of this writing) the just-released Nicolas Meier World Group's pristine effort, "Peaceful." Meier will support the new release with a 30-date UK tour; with European dates, early next year, followed by more US dates in the fall (of 2020).

 

Having made a lasting impression on gentlemen the likes of the great Bill Bruford, (the aforementioned) Jeff Beck and Steve Vai, Nicolas Meier is unquestionably one of today's most well-rounded, ambitious and masterful up-and-coming talents on guitar. In a career which is still unfolding as it blossoms, Nicolas has already rubber shoulders with a truly staggering, diverse array of some of contemporary music's most brilliant artists.

 

Stay tuned ... this is one star that is still on the rise!

Present and past band members:

Asaf Sirkis - drums

Kevin Glasgow - bass
Lizzie Ball - violin
Demi Garcia - percussions
Bernard Gregor-Smith - cello
Pat Bettison - bass and harmonica
Gilad Atzmon - clarinet, turkish clarinet & soprano saxes

Richard Jones - violin

Vinnie Colaiuta - drums

Jimmy Haslip - bass

Sally Jo - violin

James Pearson - piano
Dave O'Higgins - tenor sax & soprano saxes
Laurence Lowe - drums
Mark Lockhardt - tenor sax & soprano saxes
Tom Mason - acoustic bass
Tim Garland - tenor sax & soprano saxes
Bill Evans - tenor sax & soprano saxes
Matthieu Michel - trumpet & flugehorn
Thierry Lang - piano
Jose Reinoso - piano & keyboards
Rob Lavers - tenor sax & soprano saxes
Paul Francis - bass
Alex Hendriksen - tenor sax & soprano saxes
Ben Zwerin - bass
Siemy Di - percussions
Juliano Zanoni - drums