Maneli Jamal

Maneli Jamal

 Toronto, Ontario, CAN
BandAlternativeNew Age

Maneli Jamal is a solo acoustic guitarist whose percussive/tapping style can make music that 3 other guitarists couldn't produce in a collaborative effort. After witnessing a performance, you'll find yourself trying to figure out if all that sound is really being produced by two hands.


1st Place - 2010 Taylor Guitars Showdown Winner.
1st Place - 2010 Toronto Indie Week Oct 15 showcase winner.
1st Place - 2009 YouTube Acoustic Guitar Competition for Faith Guitars
1st Place - 2008 Toronto's Writers Co-Op / Musical Performance Competition.
2nd Place - 2008 Toronto's Wide Open Music Competition
2010 - Featured on BBC Persia Television Program Kook

Maneli Jamal is a solo acoustic guitarist, whose unique style of playing and ability to connect with his audience transcends the age, culture and generational boundaries that limit the majority of mainstream music found today. Having dedicated himself to the exploration of acoustic guitar technique, Maneli has developed his own sound. Folk, Flamenco, and Persian modes combine with his own percussive technique creating a rich and unique voice on the guitar. Maneli has lived in 4 different countries and moved over twenty times by the time he was 18 and has let his experiences around the world influence the way he speaks with the guitar.

Born in Iran and raised in Germany, Jamal moved to the States in his adolescence, immigrating to Minnesota before relocating to Austin, Texas until his late teens. At this time, his family was issued a deportation letter by the immigration office, and he was forced to move to Canada within thirty days of receiving the notice.

Taking only what they could fit in their hands, Jamal and his family arrived in Toronto after establishing their lives in Austin. It was at this time that Maneli got an acoustic guitar from his father, which has scarcely left his hands since.

“I carried it on the plane, and everywhere I went, I had it,” Jamal recalls. “For half a year, we only had what we had in our hands, and I had the acoustic guitar in my hands. Going through something like that, as a teenager especially, you need an outlet that can take you away from life and zone you out. That’s what the acoustic guitar did for me.”

Jamal had played in punk and metal bands throughout his teens, so he was no stranger to the six-string. However, acoustic guitar held new secrets for him to discover, and thus began his exploration of the virtuosic style he’s since mastered. Utilizing a mix of classical, flamenco and percussive playing, Jamal composes unique movements which are far outside the realm of traditional songwriting.

“When I came [to Toronto], I was very into classical playing, but after a while I got tired of the practicing and trying to master a technique. I got out of that whole thing and tried to master melody and rhythm as opposed to trying to master the technicality of things. I’m not a fluid player, but that’s what I think makes music art, that imperfect playing.”

An interesting aspect of his compositions is that they contain no lyrics. This presents a challenge in terms of how to grasp the listener – especially when you consider all of the songs on his upcoming album were recorded with just one guitar track.

He admits that his style is hard to explain to listeners who haven’t seen or heard him before, but instead of only listening to his songs, he insists that those interested go see him perform live to get the full effect of the music.

Maneli Jamal- Acoustic Guitar

LP 'The Ziur Movement' 2009
EP 'Demo 2006' 2006


LP 'The Ziur Movement' 2009
EP 'Demo 2006' 2006

Set List

A typical set runs from 30-60 minutes, but can be extended upon request.

A typical set list will include performances of:
Cold Arrival
Most Glorious Day
Movement I- Norym
Movement II- Vasat
Movement III- Ziur
Lucid Drawl
Morning In Adanac
Southern Magnolia
The Beautiful Escape
Homespun Life
Pipe Dream

Beatles - Yesterday
Nirvana - Smells Like Teen Spirit