Joe Myers

Joe Myers writes ferociously original music. 

In his hands the solo guitar becomes an entire ensemble as he hammers away at his strings with the aplomb of a born percussionist, and evokes at once the short verse of Nick Drake, the energy of The Dave Matthews Band, and the song writing sensibilities of David Crosby.

"Six-string vituosos are a dime a dozen these days, but the torent of notes that Joe Myers is able to coax from his guitar tends to qualify more as slieght of hand than mere musicianship," says the Phoenix New Times. "He paints incredible complex landscapes for a solo artist. He's the magic man."

Myers has recently returned to the Phoenix area and his devoted fans after a two year stint in New York City where he lived in the historic Hotel Chelsea, recording his most recent album.

His performances at Lincoln Center, Village Jazz Fest and The Bitter End stunned New York audiences. His original song writing, exotic tunings and world-class gift for phrasing and texture establish him as a formidable musical force where ever he performs.

Myers grew up in Indiana listening to Motown and other 60's and 70's pop rock. His most personal influence was his brother's band, and by age six Myers was ably playing the guitar. He started crossing musical boundaries early on, exploring Michael Hedges, Chet Atkins, and of course The Beatles. "A lot of people who say the Beatles were an influence for the do sound like The Beatles," says Myers. "I don't. But their sensibilities are all over my music."

This versatility has led him to work in film, festivals, dance, and production projects. He has long worked in tandem with renowned composer Brent Michael Davids (Kronos Quartet, Joffrey Ballet), creating original scores for The Maida Withers Dance Ensemble and performing live at the World Premier of "Silent Enemy" at the 1996 Santa Fe Film Fest. He has shared the stage with Tori Amos, Adrian Belew, The Beach Boys, Warren Zevon and a list of other talented artists.

Myers' originality extends to this CD-packaging approach. He's released his discs in cardboard sleeves, handmade wooden boxes and round tin canisters. Like his discs, Myers' music can't be put in a one-size-fits-all box.

Troubled Notes From The Hotel Chelsea (2004)

Yes, this time around it's a giant-sized matchbook!

The packaging for Joe's latest CD must be seen to be believed. The matchbook cover looks exactly like a real matchbook. And if you had any doubts about that, there's a "normal-sized" matchbook from the Hotel Chelsea included inside. You'll also discover (behind the matches) lyrics, credits, beautiful photos, and more.

On to the music . . . well, Joe describes this as his first "non-fiction" album. It was written and recorded during his family's stay at the Hotel Chelsea between June 2000 and October 2001. So, after listening to the album, you will probably have a good idea whether or not you'd like to spend time there on your next visit to New York City.



out of print

Under The Crazy Hat (1996)

Click on the song title to download a portion of the song in mp3 format.

Balancing Man
Porches & Patios



out of print
Sonoran Snake Lady (1994)

The only negative thing I can say about Joe Myers' new release is that you might get splinters from it.

The guitarist has gone all out with the packaging of Sonoran Snake Lady, creating a roughly-hewn wooden box for his second CD to live in. And before you begin screaming about unnecessary tree death, be aware that the material for each of the 1000 CDs comes from scrap wood that would otherwise go to waste. But that's not all. There are 15 cards printed on varying texture of bond that contain lyrics, recording details and pictures of Joe.

The whole package is really closer to an art project than anything else.

"We kind of went excessive," admits Myers. "But we wanted to have an album feel to the project. We wanted something people could open up and look at. We assemble the thing ourselves, we get the boxes and put the cards in and put on the artwork. 

Myers, in case you didn't know, is a longtime Valley fave, an acoustic guitarist of talent and renown. His fluid, hypnotic playing is what Snake Lady is all about; 13 tracks of original tunes with crystal-clear production. Myers' music works best when he establishes a soft, weaving groove. He succeeds in a big way with this offering. 

"It's weird, because I'm trying to showcase the solo thing, but I want to cover a lot of styles and not be pigeonholed into the singer-songwriter genre, or just as the guitar guy who wants to play lead all night," he says. "I'm trying to fuse those things together. I'm trying to have a little bit more of an energy level than a solo, Windham Hill-type of thing, but a little less than what a band would do." 

By the way, if you're wondering how he can possibly turn a profit on such an elaborate package, wonder no more. "That's good that it looks expensive," Myers says; "Part of having a good product is learning how to work with a limited budget - our budget was just miniscule on this - but if you know all your resources, and you get creative, you can do all right." 

Click on the song title to download a portion of the song in mp3 format.

March Of The Wooden Dolls

$49 (CD)
House With Nine Rooms (1991)

Click on the song title to download a portion of the song in mp3 format.

In Winter
Wild Rain

$39 (CD)