Nels Cline

Nels Cline, born January 4, 1956 in Los Angeles, is an American guitarist/composer. In the 1980s, Nels Cline was playing jazz with his twin brother Alex Cline (a drummer). Nels has been associated with many musicians in punk rock and alternative rock since then, including Thurston Moore, Mike Watt, and Wilco (the latter being a full-time member of the band since 2004). He is also the leader of the Nels Cline Singers, and Nels Cline Trio. Cline was voted the 82nd best guitarist by Rolling Stone magazine, November 2011 and the 43rd most influential guitarist by Spin magazine, May 2012. Cline started playing guitar when he was 12 years old. His twin brother Alex Cline, took up drums. They formed a musical partnership, playing together in a youth band called “HomogenizedGoo”. Both graduated from University High School, Los Angeles, California. Cline is well-known for his improvisational skills and the variety of his musical projects. He also uses effects pedals and looping device to give his music an individual sound. Cline has performed with jazz musicians Charlie Haden and Gregg Bendian, Wadada Lee Smith, Tim Berne, Vinny Gaolia, and the late Eric Von Essen, who was a longtime friend in the L.A.-based jazz group Quartet Music. Nels was invited by Chris Mancinelli, drummer, and Steuart Liebig to be part of the initial formation of BLOC in 1983. They developed their musical ideas over the course of about a year. They added Camille Henry and another guitarist NIcholas Kirogo to their repertoire. The quintet was a Los Angeles favorite, and received much praise from local media and press. Although almost every major label was interested in the group at one point, none of them seemed to know how to promote it. They were signed to A in 1990 by Tony Peluso, with Tony Peluso as their producer.

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