Michael Landau

Last updated

Michael Landau
Michael Landau 9948.jpg
Landau in 2015
Background information
Birth nameMichael Christopher Landau
Born (1958-06-01) June 1, 1958 (age 64)
Los Angeles, California, US
  • Musician
  • audio engineer
  • record producer
Years active1976–present
Website mikelandau.com

Michael Christopher Landau (born June 1, 1958) is an American musician, audio engineer, and record producer. He is a session musician and guitarist who has played on many albums since the early 1980s with Boz Scaggs, Minoru Niihara, Joni Mitchell, Rod Stewart, Seal, Michael Jackson, James Taylor, Helen Watson, Luis Miguel, Richard Marx, Steve Perry, Pink Floyd, [1] Phil Collins on "Two Hearts" and "Loco in Acapulco", Roger Daltrey, Stevie Nicks, Glenn Frey, Eros Ramazzotti, Whitney Houston, and Miles Davis. Landau, along with fellow session guitarists Dean Parks, Steve Lukather, Michael Thompson and Dann Huff, played on many of the major label releases recorded in Los Angeles from the 1980s–1990s. He has released music with several record labels, including Ulftone Music and Tone Center Records, a member of Shrapnel Label Group.


In addition to his session work, Landau has led several bands, including Raging Honkies and Burning Water. In the early 1980s, he was also in the band Maxus with Robbie Buchanan, Mark Leonard, Jay Gruska, and Doane Perry.

Early life

Landau was born and raised in Los Angeles, California. [2]


At age 19, he was touring the globe with Boz Scaggs, and the following year, he began performing in studios on the recommendation of his friend Steve Lukather. [2]


Landau cites influences including the Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, Cream, the Band, Weather Report, Pat Martino, and Jaco Pastorius. [2]


Landau has a signature Single coil guitar pickup with Suhr Guitars called the 'ML.' [3] In 2013, Fender announced that they would be collaborating with Landau on a signature Stratocaster. [4] In 2015, Fender released the Michael Landau Signature amplifier, a modified version of Hot Rod DeVille III. [5]

Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, Landau used a rack switching system made by Bob Bradshaw of Custom Audio Electronics. Other notable users of such systems were Steve Lukather and Eddie Van Halen. [6]


Solo releases

With Blue Horn

With Renegade Creation

With Hazey Jane

With Stolen Fish

With the Raging Honkies

With Burning Water

With Rita Lee

With James Taylor

With Michael Bolton

With Richard Marx

With Barry Manilow

With Kenny Rogers

With Tim McGraw

With Laura Branigan

With Joni Mitchell

With Sheena Easton

With Faith Hill

With Luis Miguel

With Mari Hamada

With Miho Nakayama

With others

Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Vinnie Colaiuta</span> American drummer

Vincent Peter Colaiuta is an American drummer who has worked as a session musician in many genres. He was inducted into the Modern Drummer Hall of Fame in 1996 and the Classic Drummer Hall of Fame in 2014. Colaiuta has won one Grammy Award and has been nominated twice. Since the late 1970s, he has recorded and toured with Frank Zappa, Joni Mitchell, and Sting, among many other appearances in the studio and in concert.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">David Foster</span> Canadian musician, record producer, songwriter

David Walter Foster is a Canadian musician, composer, arranger, record producer and music executive who chaired Verve Records from 2012 to 2016. He has won 16 Grammy Awards from 47 nominations. His music career spans more than five decades, mainly beginning in the early 1970s as a keyboardist for the pop group Skylark.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Jeff Porcaro</span> American drummer (1954–1992)

Jeffrey Thomas Porcaro was an American drummer, songwriter, and record producer. He is best known for his work with the rock band Toto but is one of the most recorded session musicians in history, working on hundreds of albums and thousands of sessions. While already an established studio player in the 1970s, he came to prominence in the United States as the drummer on the Steely Dan album Katy Lied.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Greg Phillinganes</span> American keyboardist

Gregory Arthur Phillinganes is an American keyboardist, singer-songwriter, and musical director based in Los Angeles, California. A prolific session musician, Phillinganes has contributed the role of keyboards to numerous albums representing a broad array of artists and genres. He has toured with notable artists, such as Stevie Wonder, Eric Clapton, David Gilmour and Toto, served as musical director for Michael Jackson, and has released two solo studio albums.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Jimmy Johnson (bassist)</span> American bass guitarist (born 1956)

Jimmy Johnson is an American bass guitarist best known for his work with James Taylor, Allan Holdsworth, and Flim & the BB's. Raised in a rich musical environment, his father was a 47-year member of the Minnesota Orchestra's bass section, his mother a piano teacher and accompanist, and his brother Gordon is also a professional bassist.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Paul Jackson Jr.</span> Musical artist

Paul Milton Jackson Jr. is an American fusion/urban jazz composer, arranger, producer and guitarist. He was born and raised in Los Angeles. Jackson knew by the age of fifteen that he wanted to become a professional musician. He attended the University of Southern California, majoring in music.

Neil Stubenhaus is an American bass guitarist.

Dann Lee Huff is an American record producer, studio musician and songwriter. For his work as a producer in the country music genre, he has won several awards, including the Musician of the Year award in 2001, 2004, and 2016 at the Country Music Association Awards and the Producer of the Year award in 2006 and 2009 at the Academy of Country Music. He is the father of American singer and songwriter Ashlyne Huff and brother of Giant and White Heart drummer David Huff.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Dean Parks</span> Musical artist

Weldon Dean Parks is an American session guitarist and record producer from Fort Worth, Texas.

William Frank Reichenbach Jr. is an American jazz trombonist and composer. He is the son of Bill Reichenbach, who was the drummer for Charlie Byrd from 1962 to 1973. He is best known as a session musician for television, films, cartoons, and commercials. He primarily specializes in playing the bass trombone, however, he is also proficient in playing other instruments such as the tenor trombone, contrabass trombone, euphonium, and tuba.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Pepper MaShay</span> American singer-songwriter

Jean McClain, better known as Pepper Mashay, is an American soul, house and dance music singer-songwriter who has had success as a touring and studio performer.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Jerry Hey</span> American musician

Jerry Hey is an American trumpeter, flugelhornist, horn arranger, string arranger, orchestrator and session musician who has played on hundreds of commercial recordings, including Michael Jackson's Thriller, Rock with You, Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough, Workin’ Day and Night and the flugelhorn solo on Dan Fogelberg's hit "Longer". Additionally, he has performed with artists such as George Benson, Nik Kershaw, Al Jarreau, Barbra Streisand, Donna Summer, Earth, Wind & Fire, Whitney Houston, Frank Sinatra, George Duke, Lionel Richie, Rufus and Chaka Kahn, Natalie Cole, Aretha Franklin, Patti Austin, among many others.

Russ DeSalvo is an American producer, arranger, songwriter, and guitarist.

Bob Glaub is an American bass player and session musician. He has played with such artists and bands as Journey, Steve Miller Band, John Fogerty, Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, Neil Diamond, Jerry Lee Lewis, Ringo Starr, Dusty Springfield, Aaron Neville, Linda Ronstadt, Stevie Nicks, Jackson Browne, Warren Zevon, Donna Summer, John Lennon, Rod Stewart, Crosby, Stills & Nash Bee Gees and many others.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Luis Conte</span> Cuban percussionist

Luis Conte is a Cuban percussionist best-known for his performances in the bands of artists including James Taylor, Madonna, Pat Metheny Group, Eric Clapton, Carlos Santana, Phil Collins, Rod Stewart and Shakira. He began his music career as a studio musician for Latin Jazz acts like Caldera. Conte's live performance and touring career took off when he joined Madonna's touring band in the 1980s. Neil Strauss of The New York Times describes Conte's playing as "grazing Latin-style percussion".

This article lists the complete discography of Steve Lukather.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Larry Williams (jazz musician)</span> American musician, producer, composer, and arranger

Lawrence Lowell Williams is an American record producer, composer, arranger, and multi-instrumentalist. He is proficient on the keyboards, saxophone, flute, and clarinet. Williams began his musical career in the 1970s, and has since established himself as a prominent figure in the music industry. He regularly toured and recorded with Al Jarreau for over 3 decades and also was a musician on Michael Jackson's albums Off The Wall, Thriller, and Bad.

Carlos Vega was a Cuban-born Los Angeles-based session drummer best known for his performances with James Taylor. As a part of the L.A. studio scene from the late 1970s through the 1990s, Vega contributed to a wide variety of music during the rise and popularity of the California singer-songwriter movement.

This is the discography for the American musician and session guitarist Tim Pierce, whose career spans more than four decades (2022).

Leland Sklar is an American bassist and session musician. He was a member of the Los Angeles-based instrumental group The Section, who served as the de facto house band of Asylum Records and were one of the progenitors of the soft rock sound prevalent on top-40 radio in the 1970s and 1980s. Besides appearing as the backing band on numerous recordings by artists such as James Taylor, Jackson Browne, Carole King, and Linda Ronstadt, The Section released three solo albums of instrumental rock. Both in The Section and separately, Sklar has contributed to over 2,000 albums as a session and touring musician. He has toured with James Taylor, Phil Collins, Toto, Lyle Lovett and other major acts. He has also been recorded on many soundtracks to motion pictures and television shows.


  1. "Inside the Mind of Pink Floyd: David Gilmour". Guitar. September 1995. Archived from the original on December 30, 2012. Retrieved July 29, 2010.
  2. 1 2 3 "Biography". mikelandau.com. Retrieved August 17, 2021.
  3. "ML Single Coil Pickups". suhr.com. Retrieved April 27, 2016.
  4. "Fender Custom Shop Announces Michael Landau Signature". iguitarmag.com. Archived from the original on October 24, 2018. Retrieved August 17, 2021.
  5. "Fender Announces Michael Landau Signature Amplifier". premierguitar.com (Press release). Scottsdale, Arizona. January 22, 2015. Retrieved April 27, 2016.
  6. "An Interview With Bob Bradshaw". customaudioelectronics.com. Interviewed by Richard Hallebeek. September 2000. Retrieved April 27, 2016.