Edgar Meyer

Double Bass

Appears on: Americana with Edgar Meyer

Edgar Meyer last appeared with the Oregon Symphony on September 26, 2009, when he performed The Melody of Rhythm: Concerto for Banjo, Tabla and Double Bass with Béla Fleck, Zakir Hussain, and conductor Carlos Kalmar.

In demand as both a performer and a composer, Edgar Meyer has formed a role in the music world unlike any other. Hailed by The New Yorker as “…the most remarkable virtuoso in the relatively un-chronicled history of his instrument,” Mr. Meyer’s unparalleled technique and musicianship in combination with his gift for composition have brought him to the fore. His uniqueness in the field was recognized by a MacArthur Award in 2002.

As a solo classical bassist, Mr. Meyer can be heard on a concerto album with the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra conducted by Hugh Wolff featuring Bottesini and Meyer concertos both alone and with Yo-Yo Ma and Joshua Bell. He has also recorded an album featuring three of Bach’s unaccompanied suites for cello. Mr. Meyer was honored with his fifth Grammy Award in 2015 for Best Contemporary Instrumental Album for his bass & mandolin collaboration with Chris Thile.

As a composer, Mr. Meyer has carved out a remarkable and unique niche in the musical world. His music has been premiered and recorded by Emanuel Ax, Joshua Bell, Yo-Yo Ma, the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Bela Fleck, Zakir Hussain, Hilary Hahn, and the Emerson String Quartet, among others.

Collaborations are a central part of Mr. Meyer’s work. He has been and remains a member of numerous groups whose members include Chris Thile, Béla Fleck, Zakir Hussain, Sam Bush, Jerry Douglas, Mark O’Connor, Yo-Yo Ma, Emanuel Ax, Joshua Bell, Mike Marshall, and Amy Dorfman, among others. His debut album in 1985 featured the first public appearance of Strength in Numbers, whose members were Bush, Douglas, Fleck, O’Connor, and Meyer.

Mr. Meyer began studying bass at the age of five under the instruction of his father and continued further to study with Stuart Sankey. In 1994 he received the Avery Fisher Career Grant and in 2000 became the only bassist to receive the Avery Fisher Prize. Currently, he teaches bass in partnership with Hal Robinson at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia.