|Born||18 January 1963|
|Genres||Drum and bass, jazz, jungle, fusion, livetronica|
|Associated acts||Nerve, Screaming Headless Torsos, Intergalactic Maiden Ballet, John Medeski, Meshell Ndegeocello, Dizzy Gillespie, Nina Simone|
Mayer is the son of touring musician and bass player Vali Mayer. He began his career as a drummer at an early age, receiving his first drum set at the age of two. Having taught himself throughout his childhood, he broke out into the professional music scene at the age of 18, joining the Monty Alexander group. Touring with the group launched him into the major jazz music scene, and he has played at the North Sea Jazz Festival, Montreux, Nice, and Athens etc., which culminated with his gigging with jazz-greats such as Dizzy Gillespie and Nina Simone. Eventually, after playing with a great variety of artists, Mayer moved away from jazz and into Drum 'n' Bass.
Jojo Mayer is known for bringing together jazz, drum and bass, jungle, and other influences. He is also famous for his ability to play the rhythms of programmed jungle drum 'n' bass music on acoustic drums, terming this technique "reverse engineering", a phrase borrowed from computing. He executes this approach using various methods such as the heel-toe bass drum technique, the Moeller stroke, the Valving technique, and the "pull-out" or "push-pull" accent which takes the beat on the rebound. Using these techniques, he can play beats at astonishing speeds. A few of his main influences are Tony Williams, Jack DeJohnette and Buddy Rich.
He is the leader of live electronica trio Nerve, which he founded in 1997.
He ran the popular Prohibited Beatz live electronica party in NYC from 1996–2001.
With Intergalactic Maiden Ballet:
- 1992 - Square Dance
- 1994 - Gulf
With John Medeski:
- 1994 - Lunar Crush
- 1995 - Screaming Headless Torsos
With Harry Sokal:
- 1996 - Rave the Jazz! :live:
- 1998 - Delirium Tremens
With Leo Tardin
- 2005 - Grand Pianoramax
With Janek Gwizdala:
- 2004 - Mystery To Me - Live in New York
- 2010 - The Space in Between
- 2011 - Live at the Jamboree June 17th 2011 1st set
- 2011 - Live at the Jamboree June 17th 2011 2nd set
- 2011 - Live at the Jamboree June 18th 2011 1st set
- 2011 - Live at the Jamboree June 18th 2011 2nd set
- 2012 - It Only Happens Once
- 1987 - Depart
- 2006 - Reloaded
- 2008 - Mountain Messenger
With Rebekka Bakken
- 2009 - Art of How to Fall
With Trace Elements
- 2015 - Electric Job (Live in Teramo)
Nerve (Jojo Mayer, John Davis, Jacob Bergson):
- 2007 - Prohibited Beatz
- 2010 - EP1
- 2010 - EP2
- 2011 - EP3
- 2011 - The Distance Between Zero And One
- 2012 - EP4
- 2014 - EP5
- 2015 - Live in Europe
- 2015 - Ghosts of Tomorrow
- 2016 - Vocal Collaborations
- 2017 - Nerve
- 2018 - After the Flare
- 2019 - Lunar Tribute
- 2007 - Secret Weapons for the Modern Drummer: part 1
- 2014 - Secret Weapons for the Modern Drummer: part 2
He was featured as the cover story of the January 2008 issue of Modern Drummer magazine. Jojo Mayer was interviewed by DrummerConnection.com in May 2010, and by Linus Wyrsch on "The Jazz Hole" for breakthruradio.com in July 2010.
Mayer is a long-time Sonor endorser who also uses Sabian cymbals, Vic Firth sticks and Evans Drumheads. He helped Sonor design the Jungle kit and snare. He has also collaborated with Sabian to create two lines of cymbals, the Vault "Fierce" series, and "Omni" series, which includes both AAX and HHX models. His Vault Fierce cymbals feature a raw, unlathed finish, and extensive hand hammering, while the Omnis are designed to function as both rides and crashes. He also helped to develop the hoop crash of Sabian and the perfect balance (single pedal of Sonor).
- "Free Drum Lessons".
- Drummerworld: Jojo Mayer Drummerworld
- Bisch, Kevin (10 January 1999). "PULSE; Dancing in Their Seats". The New York Times.
- "BTRtoday // Emerging Culture. Curated Daily".