Jost Nickel was born in Berlin and he started playing piano at the age of eight and three years later he began playing drums which immediately became his first priority.
After finishing school Jost Nickel went to New York City to study at the Drummers Collective where he took part in the 10-week-certificate program. In this program Jost Nickel not only studied with great teachers (e.g. Kim Plainfield, Zach Danziger, Michael Lauren, Pete Zeldman) but he also made the decision to become a professional drummer.
One year later Jost Nickel took another very important course, the "Popkurs" in Hamburg, that made him move there. This turned out to have been a good decision because he started working as a professional drummer within weeks.
Jost Nickel made a name for himself by playing drums with the band Matalex in the mid 90's. Matalex was a very popular German fusion band that recorded their first cd in 1994 with Steve Smith on drums. Jost was asked to play the tour that followed Matalex's first release and shortly after became a bandmember. In the following years the band recorded three more cds with Jost Nickel on drums and played hundreds of concerts in all of Europe. Both the concerts and cds featured Randy Brecker on trumpet and Jean Paul Bourelly on guitar.
At the same time Jost Nickel was recording and touring with Barry Finnerty (Miles Davis) who saw Jost play at the Frankfurt Music Fair.
During this period Jost Nickel felt like he wanted to play more pop music instead of instrumental fusion / jazz and so he started recording and playing with lots of different singers in Germany.
Jost Nickel's first big pop gig was with Mousse T. who had a world hit together with Tom Jones ("Sex bomb"). Until today Jost is still the drummer and musical director in Mousse T.'s band that features the singers Andrew Roachford and Omar.
Jost Nickel has also recorded quite a few Top 10 cds in France (e.g. Christophe Willem, Jenifer, L5, LinkUp). On some of these recordings he shared the drummers seat with greats like Abe Laboriel Jr. and Manu Katché.
Jost Nickel has also played/recorded with Marla Glen, Seeed, Midge Ure, Michael Sadler (Saga) and Schiller.
Currently he is a band member of Jan Delay & Disko No.1, one of Germany's top artists with whom he has played on some of the biggest festivals in Europe (e.g. Rock am Ring, Life Earth, Melt Festival, MTV Campus Invasion, Nuke Festival).
This band at the moment is certainly covering the largest share of his musical-creative work time. Jost has also built himself a reputation as a solo performer/clinican. Jost Nickel has appeared at drum festivals like World Drum Festival Hamburg (1997 & 1999), Super Drumming Nonnweiler (2000), Musik Messe Frankfurt (1995, 1996 & 2008), GoMusic Teacher Tage (2001, 2003 & 2004), Beyerdynamic Drum Day (2008) and many more. In 2008 he will take part in the PPC Drum Night Hannover, the Meinl Drum Festival and the Bag Show in Paris.
Jost Nickel lectures at Mannheim Pop Academy and on the "Popkurs" (Pop Course) at the Musikhochschule (Music Academy) in Hamburg and since the middle of 2005 he has been writing a workshop series for "Drums&Percussion" magazine.