Sixteen-year-old guitarist Brandon “Taz” Niederauer has already enjoyed the spotlight at some of the most legendary venues in America and played alongside numerous prominent artists. But these accomplishments only scratch the surface of the raw skill and musical instincts that make the New York City-based guitarist, who’ll headline tonight’s show at Levitt AMP Utica, a true musician. For this week’s edition of our Spotlight Series, we’re bringing you 10 facts about the mind-bogglingly impressive teen rocker.
1) Feeling inspired by his father’s extensive record collection and the classic 2003 film, School of Rock, Taz first picked up a guitar at the age of eight.
2) He earned the nickname “Taz” for his ferocious guitar playing.
3) In 2013, the young musician made his national television debut on the Ellen DeGeneres Show at 10 years old.
4) His TV appearances didn’t stop after Ellen—Taz has performed on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Good Morning America and The View.
5) At just 12 years old, he landed the principal role of “Zack Mooneyham,” the lead guitarist in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Tony Award-nominated Broadway production, School of Rock the Musical.
6) In January of 2018, Taz reunited with Andrew Lloyd Webber to perform with Sarah Brightman at The Phantom of the Opera’s 30th Anniversary Celebration.
7) He’s shared the stage with Stevie Nicks, Lady Gaga, members of the Allman Brothers Band, and countless other bands.
8) John Mayer had some kind words to say about the young guitarist, calling Taz “the first young kid who’s truly playing with the intention of a musician.”
9) In April 2018, Taz performed alongside Sara Bareilles, Alice Cooper and John Legend in NBC’s live broadcast production of Jesus Christ Superstar.
10) He is currently featured in Spike Lee’s Netflix series, She’s Gotta Have It.
Check out Taz’s Hendrix-reminiscent rendition of “Voodoo Child” below, and if you’re in Utica, don’t miss your chance to experience this star on the rise tonight on the Levitt AMP Utica stage!