Ian Melrose was born in Middlesbrough, England. As a youth he moved back to Ayr in Scotland with his Scottish parents and younger brother. Ian’s father was a member of the Scottish Fiddle Orchestra, so traditional music was always there somewhere. His early influences were the famous figures from the “British school” of guitar-playing i.e. Davey Graham, John Renbourn, Bert Jansch and John Martyn.
Moving to Berlin in 1981, he quickly made a name for himself on the European acoustic scene as a solo fingerstylist and as a founder member of the folk-pop bands Be Mine or Run and Talking Water, as half of the duo Kelpie (with Kerstin Blodig) and of the Leuchter-Melrose Duo (with Manfred Leuchter) , as guitarist and arranger with the Celtic project Norland Wind and more recently also with the guitar projects FourStyles and Celtic Guitar Journeys (with Soig Siberíl & Dylan Fowler).
A tour through Germany in 1996 with Norland Wind brought the contact to Noel & Padraig Duggan of CLANNAD, who in turn suggested Ian for the job of lead guitarist with Clannad for “World Tour ‘96”. You can hear Ian playing on the grammy-winning Clannad album “Landmarks” and on the “Clannad: Live in Concert” album, released in 2005.
Ian was signed up in 2001 by Europe’s most prestigious acoustic guitar label ACOUSTIC MUSIC RECORDS, and has quickly become one of the labels best-selling and major featured artists. As well as the five solo CDs he has also written a book of guitar transcriptions of Scottish fiddle music and a DVD/Book with examples of his own style (“Fingerpickers have more fun”)
Apart from his own projects he has also produced CDs for – among others – Vicki Genfan (USA), Duggan Brothers (of CLANNAD), Nina Omilian, Tobias Burger and most recently Louis de Roo (Belgium) ….
A regular studio musician at the renowned German Label Stockfisch Records, he has recorded for many artists including Sara K., David Munyon, Allan Taylor, Mckinley Black, Katja Werker ……
He has appeared on over 100 albums …….
He has played solo and ensemble concerts all over the world, including many major festivals (e.g. Montreal Jazz Festival (CAN), Celtic Connections (SCO), Open Strings (D), Dranouter Folk Festival (B), Kirkmichael & Ullapool Guitar Festivals (SCO), International Guitar Tour (Hungary), International Guitar Festival of Genua (It)) he does studio work for film and TV productions, and continues to produce and arrange for various artists.