Meltemi

Meltemi

BandWorldNew Age

Meltémi is a Greek Australian based in Melbourne formed in 2003. It comprises of four core members of Greek and Turkish origin. The musical genre is ‘World’ and can be best described as a fusion of Middle Eastern, European and Western beats and sounds

Biography

Nicholas Koutsaliotis was born in Kozani, Greece and has studied the bouzouki from an early age both in Greece and in Australia. He is well known in the music scene in Melbourne having performed with various bands and participated in many events and festivals both local and abroad. He has also supported many international artists including Haris Alexiou and has participated in tributes to such composers as Mikis Theodorakis. Nicholas’ bouzouki style is reminiscent to the famous bouzouki player Yiannis Palaiologou and funnily enough, he is often referred to as the ‘only left handed bouzouki player in Melbourne’.

The music of Meltemi is very personal to Nicholas – you could say that the compositions are part of his heart and soul. Some of the pieces were written years ago yet it has taken the joining of this group to bring them to fruition.

Byron was born in Melbourne in 1974. He studied keyboard at the age of 8 and soon moved on to stringed instruments, guitar bouzouki, oud and violin. Since his first professional performance at the age of 18 Byron has performed as a freelance musician and as musical director playing with various international names including supporting George Dalaras. He is well known within the Melbourne music scene having performed in various cultural projects including Greek-Turkish fusion band “Shift Da Telly” , Greek-Irish folk project “Greco-Celtic connection”, and is also an accomplished singer.

Cüneyt was born in Instanbul, Turkey and started playing kanun (middle eastern harp or plucked dulcimer) at the early age of 8. He attended the Bogazici Music Academy where he studied classical Turkish music and commenced his formal training. His first professional performances began at age 16.

Although he is classically trained, Cüneyt’s love for music saw him embrace Turkish folk, pop, jazz, Greek and rebetika music. He has recorded with many artists in Turkey, Germany, Bruselles and Egypt.

He arrived in Melbourne in 2002 and it was not long before he became involved in the local music scene. His musical expression, interpretation and prowess are unparalleled which make him one of the most sought after kanun players in the country.

Michael was born in Athens in 1967. Growing up in a musical family he inherited a passion for World Music and musicology. Very soon he found himself involved professionally in the Melbourne music scene and industry.

Michael has successfully attended the Victorian College of the Arts, were he studied classical percussion from which he graduated in 1988. As a freelance musician, for over 20 years, he established himself, as being one of Melbourne’s most versatile percussionists and educators. He is proficient in music styles from around the world specialising in Middle Eastern, Latin, brazilian and flamenco. Michael’s endorsements include L.P, Zildjian Cymbals and, Vater drumsticks.

The members of the band have individually and collectively participated in numerous national and international festivals. Their experience and repertoire is extensive from dimotika, rembetika, smyrneika, laika, to traditional dance music. Their unique musical style, their passion and their ability to create, is what separates them from the rest. They are an exciting band and definitely a ‘must see’.

Discography

Meltémi released their first CD in mid September 2005 and consists of original instrumental compositions using bouzouki, guitar, kanun (Middle Eastern plucked dulcimer/harp) darbuka and various other percussion instruments. Over 100 albums were sold in less than two months of the release. CD’s are currently stocked @ Readings, Caras Music and Saxon Music in Thessaloniki, Greece. The band has recently appeared live on Channel 31 Asylum TV, has had continual airplay on various independent radio stations including SBS and 3XY and has received much positive feedback from Australian and Greek media personalities alike.