Edgar Meyer

Biography

Born: 1961; Oklahoma City, OK  
Edgar Meyer emerged in the 1990s as one of the world's most talented string bass players, at home, remarkably, in both the classical repertory and in bluegrass. He is also a composer whose works achieved wide diffusion in the late 1990s; they served as cornerstones in the efforts of Sony to forge new audiences for classical music by offering compositions with a direct, accessible musical language.

Born in Oklahoma City, Meyer was
Read more the son of a bass player. When he was two or three years old he started imitating his father by holding a broom, pretending it was a bass. He started learning on a real instrument at five years old, taking lessons from his father. The instrument was a 1933 bass made in Czechoslovakia and in use, hanging from someone's ceiling, as a flower planter. Meyer has said that he grew up with the bass as his primary means of personal expression, and became committed to the instrument so early that he is unable to remember a time when he was not playing it. Later he studied with Stuart Sankey, but still credits his father as his primary teacher. He attended Indiana University, studying with James Buswell. Meyer won numerous competitions and from the beginning forged a crossover career, playing with classical musicians as well as popular and country acts. What steered him toward country music was his encounter, in his early twenties, with the virtuosic and complex progressive bluegrass music of the 1980s, as exemplified by such performers as Sam Bush, Jerry Douglas, and Béla Fleck. He has toured and/or recorded with Garth Brooks, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Hank Williams, Jr., Emmylou Harris, James Taylor, Lyle Lovett, Reba McEntire, Travis Tritt, the Chieftains, the Indigo Girls, Yo-Yo Ma, Paul Shaffer and the CBS Orchestra, Joshua Bell, and Mark O'Connor. From 1986 to 1992 he was a member of a progressive bluegrass band called Strength in Numbers.

He began to compose around 1990, primarily to write down things that had emerged from "noodling around" and improvising, wanting to "codify" them into pieces. He was a regular performer at the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival from 1985 to 1993, and six of his earliest compositions were intended for performance there. He has composed a double bass concerto, a bass quartet, a work called Trout Variations (based on the Schubert song), a string trio, a violin concerto (premiered and recorded by Hilary Hahn), and a double concerto for bass and cello. Much of his music is influenced by bluegrass and traditional American folk styles. In the late '90s and early 2000s, Meyer became an important participant in the American-flavored crossover albums of cellist Yo-Yo Ma.

Meyer records exclusively for Sony. He is married to violinist Connie Heard; they have one son. He has been a member of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center since 1994, and in that same year became the first bassist to win the Avery Fisher Career Grant. Read less
Browse 1-25 of 40 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    Emerson String Quartet: Complete Recordings on Deutsche Grammophon
    Label: Dg Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 002514572 Release Date: 07/15/2016   Number of Discs: 52
    Composer:  Franz Schubert,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Béla Bartók,  Claude Debussy  ... 
    Performer:  Carol Wincenc,  Mstislav Rostropovich,  Thomas Hampson,  Menahem Pressler  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Emerson String Quartet
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  • 2.
    Yo-Yo Ma: The Classical Cello Collection
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 513074 Release Date: 10/02/2015   Number of Discs: 15
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Luigi Boccherini,  Franz Schubert,  Ludwig van Beethoven  ... 
    Performer:  Yo-Yo Ma,  Ton Koopman,  Emanuel Ax,  Edgar Meyer  ... 
    Conductor:  Ton Koopman,  Claudio Abbado,  Kurt Masur,  Lorin Maazel  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra,  New York Philharmonic,  ORTF National Orchestra  ... 
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  • 3.
    Bass & Mandolin / Chris Thile, Edgar Meyer
    Label: Nonesuch   Catalog: 544735 Release Date: 09/09/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Chris Thile,  Edgar Meyer
    Performer:  Chris Thile,  Edgar Meyer
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  • 4.
    Meyer, Bottesini: Concertos / Edgar Meyer, Bell, Ma
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 56148 Release Date: 04/22/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Giovanni Bottesini,  Edgar Meyer
    Performer:  Edgar Meyer,  Joshua Bell,  Yo-Yo Ma
    Conductor:  Hugh Wolff
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Paul Chamber Orchestra
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  • 5.
    Goat Rodeo Sessions / Yo-Yo Ma, Stuart Duncan, Edgar Meyer, Chris Thile [Deluxe CD & DVD Set]
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 197716 Release Date: 10/22/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Stuart Duncan,  Edgar Meyer,  Chris Thile,  Aoife O'Donovan  ... 
    Performer:  Yo-Yo Ma,  Edgar Meyer,  Chris Thile,  Stuart Duncan  ... 
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  • 6.
    David Shifrin & Friends
    Label: Delos   Catalog: 3423 Release Date: 07/31/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Stephen Hartke,  Ellen Taaffe Zwilich,  Aaron Copland,  Aaron J. Kernis
    Performer:  David Shifrin,  Daniel Phillips,  Anne-Marie McDermott,  Theodore Arm  ... 
    Conductor:  Ransom Wilson
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  • 7.
    Goat Rodeo Sessions / Ma, Duncan, Meyer, Thile [DVD]
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 197465 Release Date: 05/29/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Edgar Meyer,  Aoife O'Donovan,  Chris Thile,  Stuart Duncan  ... 
    Performer:  Yo-Yo Ma,  Edgar Meyer,  Chris Thile,  Stuart Duncan  ... 
    DVD: $11.99
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  • 8.
    Goat Rodeo Sessions / Yo-yo Ma, Stuart Duncan, Edgar Meyer, Chris Thile [blu-ray]
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 197469 Release Date: 05/29/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Edgar Meyer,  Aoife O'Donovan,  Chris Thile,  Stuart Duncan  ... 
    Performer:  Yo-Yo Ma,  Edgar Meyer,  Chris Thile,  Stuart Duncan  ... 
    Blu-ray Video: $21.99
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  • 9.
    Goat Rodeo Sessions / Yo-Yo Ma, Stuart Duncan, Edgar Meyer, Chris Thile
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 784118 Release Date: 10/24/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Stuart Duncan,  Edgar Meyer,  Chris Thile,  Aoife O'Donovan
    Performer:  Edgar Meyer,  Yo-Yo Ma,  Chris Thile,  Stuart Duncan  ... 
    CD: $14.99
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  • 10.
    Appalachia Waltz / Yo-Yo Ma
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 56116 Release Date: 05/03/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Traditional,  Edgar Meyer,  Mark O'Connor
    Performer:  Edgar Meyer,  Mark O'Connor,  Yo-Yo Ma
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  • 11.
    At Home With Friends / Joshua Bell
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 752716 Release Date: 09/29/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Rodgers,  Ravi Shankar,  Diane Warren,  Antonio Carlos Jobim  ... 
    Performer:  Joshua Bell,  Marvin Hamlisch,  Anoushka Shankar,  Edgar Meyer  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Tiempo Libre
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  • 12.
    Songs Of Joy And Peace / Yo-Yo Ma & Friends
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 724414 Release Date: 10/14/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Traditional,  John Lennon,  Osvaldo Golijov,  Blossom Dearie  ... 
    Performer:  Natalie MacMaster,  Yo-Yo Ma,  Edgar Meyer,  Chris Thile  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Silk Road Ensemble
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  • 13.
    Songs Of Joy And Peace [Deluxe Edition] / Yo-Yo Ma
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 733336 Release Date: 10/14/2008   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Jerome Kern,  Anonymous,  Lowell Mason,  George Harrison  ... 
    Performer:  Diana Krall,  John Clayton,  Yo-Yo Ma,  Paquito D'Rivera  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Silk Road Ensemble
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  • 14.
    The Best Of Edgar Meyer / Ma, Bell, O'connor, Fleck, Et Al
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 713233 Release Date: 09/04/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Edgar Meyer,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Pablo de Sarasate,  Traditional
    Performer:  Edgar Meyer,  Joshua Bell,  Mike Marshall,  Béla Fleck  ... 
    Conductor:  Hugh Wolff
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Paul Chamber Orchestra
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  • 15.
    The Essential Joshua Bell
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 707416 Release Date: 04/03/2007   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Jules Massenet,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Pablo de Sarasate  ... 
    Performer:  Joshua Bell,  Simon Mulligan,  Frederic Chiu,  John T. Williams  ... 
    Conductor:  Michael Tilson Thomas,  Michael Stern,  Roger Norrington,  David Zinman  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra,  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields,  Camerata Salzburg  ... 
    CD: $18.99
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  • 16.
    Appassionato / Yo-yo Ma
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 702668 Release Date: 01/09/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  John T. Williams,  César Franck,  George Gershwin,  Antonio Vivaldi  ... 
    Performer:  John T. Williams,  Yo-Yo Ma,  Kathryn Stott,  Jeffrey Kahane  ... 
    Conductor:  Ton Koopman,  Eugene Ormandy,  Ennio Morricone,  Claudio Abbado
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra,  Philadelphia Orchestra,  Roma Sinfonietta Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $14.99
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  • 17.
    Edgar Meyer
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 96505 Release Date: 04/25/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Edgar Meyer
    Performer:  Edgar Meyer
    ArkivCD $6.99
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  • 18.
    Schubert:
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 92765 Release Date: 10/18/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Schubert
    Performer:  Edgar Meyer,  Yo-Yo Ma,  Emanuel Ax,  Rebecca Young  ... 
    CD: $8.99
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  • 19.
    The Essential Yo-Yo Ma
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 93927 Release Date: 08/16/2005   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Antonio Carlos Jobim,  Antonín Dvorák,  Johannes Brahms,  Joseph Brackett  ... 
    Performer:  Yo-Yo Ma,  Kathryn Stott,  Nilson Matta,  Rosa Passos  ... 
    Conductor:  Kurt Masur,  Ennio Morricone,  Chen Xieyang,  Tan Dun  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Philharmonic,  Roma Sinfonietta Orchestra,  Claude Bolling Ensemble  ... 
    CD: $18.99
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  • 20.
    Music For Two / Meyer, Fleck
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 92106 Release Date: 04/27/2004   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Béla Fleck,  Edgar Meyer
    CD: $11.99
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  • 21.
    Mendelssohn: Octet, Sextet / Lincoln Center Society
    Label: Delos   Catalog: 3266 Release Date: 11/26/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Felix Mendelssohn
    Performer:  Edgar Meyer,  David Golub,  Paul Neubauer,  Toby Hoffman  ... 
    Conductor:  David Shifrin
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center
    CD: $17.99
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  • 22.
    Meyer, Bottesini: Concertos / Edgar Meyer, Bell, Ma
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 60956 Release Date: 06/11/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Edgar Meyer,  Giovanni Bottesini
    Performer:  Yo-Yo Ma,  Edgar Meyer,  Joshua Bell
    Conductor:  Hugh Wolff
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Paul Chamber Orchestra
    CD: $9.99
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  • 23.
    Bela Fleck - Perpetual Motion
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 89610 Release Date: 10/02/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Johannes Brahms,  Domenico Scarlatti,  Claude Debussy  ... 
    Performer:  Béla Fleck,  Evelyn Glennie,  Chris Thile,  Gary Hoffman  ... 
    CD: $11.99
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  • 24.
    Classic Yo-yo / Yo-yo Ma
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 89667 Release Date: 09/18/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Astor Piazzolla,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Antonín Dvorák,  George Gershwin  ... 
    Performer:  Hector Console,  Yo-Yo Ma,  Leonardo Marconi,  Nestor Marconi  ... 
    Conductor:  Ton Koopman,  Seiji Ozawa,  John T. Williams
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra,  Boston Symphony Orchestra,  Los Angeles Recording Arts Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $14.99
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  • 25.
    Heartland - An Appalachian Anthology /Ma, Bell, Fleck, Et Al
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 89683 Release Date: 07/03/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Mark O'Connor,  Traditional,  Edgar Meyer,  Stephen Foster
    Performer:  John Mock,  Russ Barenberg,  Mark Schatz,  John Jarvis  ... 
    CD: $11.99
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