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Lyras Nikos

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Guitarist

Growing up in Athens, Greece, Niko Lyras played guitar in local rock bands and signed his first record deal at 17. Convinced that music was his career, he moved to the U.S. two years later and settled in Memphis, Tennessee, home of the soulful music he loved. Through his college years, Niko established himself in the local music community and worked his way through bachelor’s and master’s degrees playing everything from straight-ahead jazz to funky-butt R&B.

He opened Cotton Row Recording in 1980, steadily building a reputation as one of the city’s top studios for both emerging and established artists. Over the years, Niko has engineered, produced, and played guitar on hundreds of projects at Cotton Row and other studios in the U.S., Canada, and Europe. His track record of developing promising young artists was spotlighted by Wendy Moten’s Top 5 hit “Come In Out Of The Rain,” which Lyras co-wrote and produced.

The walls of his Cotton Row studio are lined with the covers of albums and CDs recorded there, representing virtually every musical genre: classical, jazz, bluesmen like Albert Collins and Luther Allison, rockers like Saliva, gospel artists like Edwin Hawkins and the Clark Sisters, contemporary rappers like Three Six Mafia and Lil Jon.

Niko’s musical and production talents have also been heard in major motion pictures and television shows, with music recorded both in his studio and live on location.

His work has been widely honored by his peers, including a BMI songwriting award, a Critics Choice award from the Broadcast Film Critics Association, the Canadian Juno and Felix awards, three NARAS Premier Player honors and four ADDY awards.

From his home base at Cotton Row, Niko continues to produce, engineer, run three music publishing companies, and stay busy as a studio and live guitarist. He performs regularly with his jazz/funk instrumental group Voodoo Village, and produced the band’s two nationally-charting albums. Most recently, he completed a solo guitar album, slated for April 29 release, featuring stellar guests Victor Wooten, Futureman, Eric Gales, JD Blair, Wendy Moten, and Mononeon.

Last modified on Monday, 18 April 2016 08:22

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