Cusco (band)

Cusco (band)

Cusco is a German cross-cultural new age band named after the Peruvian city of Cusco, which at one time was the capital city of the ancient Inca Empire. The band's songs contain influences from music around the world. The band is led by founders Michael Holm and Kristian Schultze. Michael Holm, already a successful vocal artist, had long been fascinated with ancient cultures from South America and beyond, and wanted to capture this fascination in the form of a musical tribute to the ancient worlds he wished to remember. He met Kristian Schultze, formerly a member of the jazz band Passport, in 1978 and found out that they shared very similar musical and historical interests. In 1979, Cusco the band was formed and they eventually signed with Higher Octave Music, releasing their first album on that label in 1988. They currently reside in Weilheim / Oberbayern, Germany.

Compared to other new age artists, Cusco's music is quite melodic and usually energetic, and the band focuses on creating a fusion of modern and ethnic styles with classical music influences and solid rock music sensibilities. Most of the ethnic instruments are keyboard-generated, giving the music a synthetic quality. Some of their music is used as pre-show background music in Epcot prior to IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth, and has been used as bumper music for the popular American syndicated radio program, Coast to Coast AM, as well as several television advertisements, including a Bud Ice beer commercial. Additionally, Cusco composed and performed the music for the German television special Sielmann 2000.

During their years on Higher Octave from 1988 to the present, Cusco has sold well over two million albums (the Apurimac series alone selling well over one million), despite their genre remaining relatively underground. Their albums consistently rank high on the instrumental/new age music sales charts.


* indicates a Higher Octave Music release

Studio albums


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