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The Meters: NOLA’s Groove Masters – A Legacy

In the realm of funk music, few names resonate as powerfully as The Meters. These New Orleans legends, often referred to as NOLA’s Groove Masters, left an indelible mark on the music world as an instrumental funk band. But what sets them apart from their contemporaries and cements their status as influential musicians? It’s their iconic rhythm section that remains unmatched to this day. The Meters’ legacy is that of musical pioneers who revolutionized the funk genre and captivated audiences with their electrifying performances.

Key Takeaways

  • The Meters, also known as NOLA’s Groove Masters, were influential musicians who became New Orleans legends in the funk genre.
  • Their iconic rhythm section set them apart from other funk bands and made their music instantly recognizable.
  • With their innovative rhythms and infectious dance music, The Meters paved the way for future generations of musicians.
  • The band released eight acclaimed albums, including “Rejuvenation” and “Fire On The Bayou,” which are considered classics in the funk genre.
  • The Meters’ enduring influence extends to hip-hop and contemporary music, with many artists sampling their tracks.

The Meters’ Music and Legacy

The Meters, a legendary funk band from New Orleans, left an indelible mark on the world of music. Their unique sound, combining elements of funk, soul, and R&B, captivated audiences and cemented their status as influential musicians and musical pioneers.

The Meters’ instrumental music was a showcase of their exceptional musicianship and their ability to create tight grooves that made people move. Their innovative rhythms and infectious dance music earned them widespread recognition and admiration.

In the vibrant music scene of New Orleans, The Meters stood out as true legends. Their music paved the way for future generations of musicians, inspiring them to explore the boundaries of funk music and push the limits of their own creativity. Their legacy continues to resonate throughout the city, where they are celebrated as true icons.

The Meters’ influence extends far beyond New Orleans. Their groundbreaking sound and undeniable talent have left an indelible imprint on funk music and have inspired countless artists worldwide. Their innovative approach to rhythm and their tight grooves have become hallmarks of the genre.

The Meters’ legacy lives on, influencing not only funk music but also a wide range of contemporary genres. Their music has been sampled by hip-hop artists, further cementing their position as influential musicians with a lasting impact. Their contributions to the world of music will continue to be celebrated and revered for generations to come.

The image below captures the essence of The Meters’ music and legacy:

Rise to Fame and Discography

The Meters embarked on their journey to fame when they became the house band for esteemed producers Allen Toussaint and Marshall Sehorn. This collaboration allowed them to showcase their immense talent and solidify their position as influential musicians in the world of funk music.

During their career, The Meters not only worked with renowned artists but also recorded their own original songs, leaving an indelible mark on the music industry. Their discography boasts eight highly acclaimed albums that have become classics in the funk genre.

Their album “Rejuvenation” exemplifies their unique fusion of funk, soul, and rhythm and blues, captivating listeners with its infectious energy and exceptional musicianship. The band’s “Fire On The Bayou” further demonstrates their ability to create grooves that resonate with audiences, solidifying their status as New Orleans legends.

Highlights from The Meters’ Discography:

  • “Rejuvenation” (1974)
  • “Fire On The Bayou” (1975)
  • “Cabbage Alley” (1972)
  • “Struttin'” (1970)

“The Meters’ ability to seamlessly blend different musical styles in their albums, such as funk and soul, showcased their versatility and creativity.” – Music Critic

With their remarkable rise to fame and an impressive discography, The Meters continue to be celebrated as influential musicians, leaving an enduring legacy in the realm of funk music.

Reunion and Revival

After a long hiatus, the original members of The Meters reunited for a farewell show at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival.

The band’s reunion brought hope and inspiration to the city as it was recovering from the devastating effects of Hurricane Katrina.

This historic event not only marked the return of The Meters but also signified a cultural revival and a renewed appreciation for New Orleans’ musical heritage.

As the joyful tunes of The Meters resonated through the festival grounds, the crowds were reminded of the profound impact of this legendary band and their contribution to the city’s rich musical legacy.

“The Meters’ reunion is a testament to the resilience and spirit of New Orleans. Their music not only brings people together but also serves as a powerful reminder of the city’s vibrant culture and heritage.”

The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival provided the perfect backdrop for this highly anticipated reunion, as it celebrates the city’s diverse musical traditions and showcases renowned artists from around the world.

With their infectious grooves, tight rhythms, and undeniable talent, The Meters’ reunion performance at the festival solidified their status as musical icons and further cemented their place in the hearts of music lovers everywhere.

As the sun set on the stage, and the crowd erupted in applause and cheers, it was evident that The Meters’ reunion had not only brought joy and nostalgia but also sparked a renewed sense of pride in the city’s artistic heritage.

Influence on Hip-Hop and Contemporary Music

The Meters’ music had a significant impact on the development of hip-hop and contemporary music. Known for their tight grooves, rhythmic intricacies, and infectious energy, The Meters became a source of inspiration for countless artists in different genres.

Hip-hop producers have frequently sampled The Meters’ tracks, infusing their funk-infused sound into the fabric of modern music. Songs like “Cissy Strut” and “Funky Miracle” have been sampled and looped, providing the backbone for numerous hip-hop tracks. Through sampling, The Meters’ influence permeates the beats and rhythms of hip-hop, showcasing their enduring legacy in contemporary music.

“The Meters’ music is the embodiment of funk. Their tight grooves and infectious energy continue to inspire artists across genres.”

The Meters’ impact on hip-hop extends beyond sampling. Their emphasis on rhythm and syncopation influenced the way hip-hop producers construct beats and arrange their music. The Meters’ mastery of pocket playing, where each instrument locks tightly into the groove, has become a cornerstone of hip-hop production.

Furthermore, The Meters’ distinct sound has influenced artists in various contemporary music genres. From neo-soul to modern funk, their style continues to be revered and emulated.

Legal Battles and Legacy Preservation

The Meters’ journey was not without its fair share of challenges. Throughout their career, the band faced legal battles and contract disputes that ultimately led to their dissolution in 1977. These conflicts centered around issues of rights ownership and control over their music, putting a strain on the group’s dynamic.

However, the members of The Meters were determined to protect their legacy and preserve their music for future generations. They embarked on a legal journey to regain control of their rights and masters, engaging in negotiations and settlements to rectify the situation.

“We had to fight tooth and nail to reclaim what was rightfully ours,” said one band member. “We were adamant about preserving our music and ensuring that it would continue to inspire and captivate audiences.”

The Meters’ persistence paid off as they successfully settled out of court, reclaiming some of their publishing rights and masters. This victory not only secured their ownership over their music but also allowed them to have a say in its preservation and usage.

Despite the legal battles they endured, The Meters’ music remains a celebrated part of music history, continuing to inspire and influence musicians across generations. Their legacy serves as a testament to their talent and the impact they made on the funk genre and beyond.

Through their legal battles and commitment to protecting their music, The Meters have left a lasting mark on the music industry. Their determination to preserve their legacy ensures that their contributions will continue to be cherished, studied, and appreciated for years to come.


The Meters, also known as NOLA’s Groove Masters, have left an indelible mark on the world of funk music. As influential musicians and New Orleans legends, their instrumental funk band revolutionized the genre with their iconic rhythm section and innovative sound. The Meters’ vibrant and infectious music continues to captivate audiences, making them musical pioneers who will forever be revered.

Throughout their career, The Meters showcased their exceptional musicianship and tight grooves, creating a unique blend of funk, soul, and R&B. Their contributions to the cultural landscape of New Orleans and the broader music industry cannot be overstated. With a discography that includes classics like “Rejuvenation” and “Fire On The Bayou,” The Meters’ legacy as NOLA’s Groove Masters will forever resonate.

Despite legal battles and contract disputes, The Meters’ music and influence remain timeless. Their enduring impact on hip-hop and contemporary music is evident, with their tracks being sampled by countless artists. The Meters’ ability to inspire future generations is a testament to their status as iconic rhythm section musicians.

In conclusion, The Meters’ journey from an instrumental funk band to becoming New Orleans legends and influential musical pioneers is a testament to their talent and impact. Their contributions to funk music and the wider music industry are undeniable, securing their place as NOLA’s Groove Masters. Their influential sound continues to reverberate, making The Meters a band that will forever be celebrated and cherished.

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