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March 08, 2024 2 min read

Mike Leon is a highly skilled and versatile bassist known for his dynamic contributions to the heavy metal music scene. Born on April 20, 1987 in Tampa Florida, Leon's musical journey began at a young age when he picked up the bass guitar. His technical prowess and distinctive style quickly set him apart, leading to opportunities with various bands. Leon gained widespread recognition as the bassist for the metal supergroup Soulfly, where his thunderous basslines and stage presence became integral to the band's sound. Beyond Soulfly, he has collaborated with other notable acts such as Havok, Igorrr, Arsis, Nailbomb, and The Absence, showcasing his ability to adapt across different sub-genres within the metal spectrum. With a career marked by innovation and a solid rhythmic foundation, Mike Leon continues to leave an undeniable mark on the world of heavy music.

Mike Leon on stage

In addition to his musical accomplishments, Leon is celebrated for his dedication to pushing the boundaries of bass playing. His technical proficiency, combined with a deep understanding of musical theory, has earned him respect among both fans and fellow musicians. Whether delivering intricate bass solos or providing a solid backbone to the rhythm section, Mike Leon remains a prominent figure in the contemporary heavy metal scene, contributing to the genre's evolution and inspiring aspiring bassists worldwide.

Describe your rig or instrument of choice: I play my own signature ESP/LTD ML-B4 bass, as well as several LTD B-1004 basses. All basses are equipped with the Nordstrand Big Split 4 pickups! My basses run into a Darkglass B7kV2 pedal, and into Peavey Mini-Mega heads and VB 8x10 cabinets.I use Richter straps, ENKI cases, and SIT Strings as well to keep my basses safe and sounding sharp!

How did you discover Nordstrand?  I first discovered Nordstrand when ESP released the B Series basses, with the Big Split 4's installed, and I loved them so much, we ended up putting them into my signature bass! I've been using Nordstrand pickups exclusively since May of 2018
Mike Leon on stage

What I love about Nordstrand pickups the most are their versatility. No matter which playing style you use, the Big Split 4's provide the best foundation for ANY approach to music. They are capable of handling the most aggressive tones, as well as the most crystal-clear clean tones, and everything else in between with power and precision! 

Artists whom with you are currently working: I've been touring across the globe and releasing albums with the heavy metal band SOULFLY for the past 8 years.

Other artists of note whom with you have worked:
The Absence: 2007-2022
Havok: 2013-2015
CAVALERA: 2018-2022
Igorrr: 2020 album sessions
Arsis: Live bass 2015

Find more on Mike Leon on the interwebs: 


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