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Martin Tielli


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Martin Tielli, born in 1967 in Italy, is a Canadian singer-songwriter. He is a member of the Rheostatics, and has also released material as a solo artist and with the side project Nick Buzz. As well, he has appeared as a guest musician on albums by Barenaked Ladies, Kevin Hearn, The Waltons, Jane Siberry, Ashley MacIsaac, Meryn Cadell and Mia Sheard. He is also a painter, and created most of the album covers for the Rheostatics. In 2005 he shot a movie entitled Black Widow with Mary Margaret O’Hara and Sarah Slean for CBC Television.

Tielli’s guitar style is textured and flamboyant, and his vocal style is acrobatic (he has an extremely developed falsetto range). He is something of an eccentric, often enigmatic in interviews, and he suffers from severe anxiety when performing solo.

Tielli plays a Steinberger headless electric guitar, nicknamed “Steiny”. This guitar is made out of graphite instead of wood, which gives it incredible sustain. It has a special mechanism that allows you to bend to virtually any pitch without going out of tune. Martin is a virtuoso on the Steinberger and is a master of its many techniques. Martin’s other famous guitar is his Ibanez double neck 6/12 string electric guitar. He painted his Ibanez guitar with a “never quite presented idea” for the new Canadian flag, designed by A.Y. Jackson. This design is often mistaken for one originally championed by Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson to be the Canadian flag (nicknamed “the Pearson Pennant”).

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  • BynVacum

    His cover of Farmer In The City is truly great.

    2 Dec 2013 Reply
  • halifaxtj

    As awesome as his CD's are they can't even touch the electricity of his live performances. Completely amazing. All I can say is "More Please". TJ

    3 Apr 2009 Reply
  • gardengnome3

    I'll Never Tear You Apart is lovely lovely lovely lovely lovely lovely lovely

    21 Dec 2008 Reply
  • mysterioso

    Martin Tielli is a godlike genius. Seriously.

    1 Oct 2008 Reply
  • Tobilius

    This man is such a goddamn genius

    19 Jul 2008 Reply
  • SteveAwes0me

    Where can I find an mp3 of My Sweet Relief?

    18 Jul 2008 Reply
  • tealeafer

    A true artist in every sense of the word. I'm not ashamed to say that Martin is solely responsible for all the poetry I wrote in my 20s! He (and the Rheostatics) are Canada's beat, rhythm, roll, geography and seasons put to music. I still see myself stood alone at the bus stop in the dead of winter listening to my little cassette player when I hear Martin's sublime voice.

    29 Apr 2008 Reply

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