ROBERT MIKE MAHAFFAY email@example.com 503-478-1127
My journey through music has taken me from burlesque to symphony halls and everywhere in between. I began playing music by studying piano for four years, one catastrophic month on alto saxophone, and when my mother felt that if I did something with my wrists, it would improve my handwriting - and a drummer was born. I studying with Don Worth, moved on to classical master, Joe Amato. I joined the PORTLAND YOUTH PHILHARMONIC , under the baton of Jacob Avshalomov, where I spent four years. I spent a summer studying drums with Alan Dawson at the Berkley School of Jazz in Boston . I auditoned three times for the Oregon Symphony and was rejected. The symphony conductor heard me play in a nightclub and hired me on the spot. I was one of the youngest members of that orchestra. All along, I performed in show bands, taught percussion, and played jazz in various afterhours clubs ( Cafe Espresso, studio A ).
When I moved to NY, I began by teaching Musical and Occupational therapy at Gracie Square Hospital, and worked in studios recording commercials and background music. I got a call to join JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR on the road. When I left the road show, I joined a 50's rock and Roll band , The Angels. We toured internationally, playing such venues as Madison Square Garden SRO, and the Midnite Special TV show with Wolfman Jack.
During this period I belonged to FREE LIFE COMMUNICATIONS - a musicians cooperative presenting Avante Guarde music at The Space For Innovative Development , playing with musicians such as Dave Leibman, Mark Whitecage, Perry Robinson, Guntar Hampel, Jean Lee, Greg Kogan, Armen Halburian, Mike Moss, and Badal Roy. It was during this time I created the band International Percussion, an all percussion band comprised of drummers from a variety of different cultures, where I performed throughout the NY area. I became VP OF FREE LIFE COMMUNICATIONS, and was part of the Loft Jazz Movement in New York with my own loft - Sunrise Studios - as a performance space, presenting 180 concerts, throughout its existence.
Composer and performer Taji Ito asked me to join him in a number of dance theater pieces at THE Open Eye Theater , under the Artistic Direction of choreographer, Jean Erdman and mythologist Joe Campbell . I spent the next ten years composing music for other choreographers within The Open Eye Theater: including THE VALERIE HAMMER PROJECT , creating scores for such works as OP ODESSEY , winning the prize for "Best Company" at the 15me FESTIVAL INTERNATIONAL DE LA DANCE, at Theater Champs Eleyses Paris FR in 1977 . Other scores included FONTANA and COPERNICUS , which were also performed in the New York City area. I was also commissioned to create scores for various artists such as Jon Hollander's Batterie Dance company - CUBE AND SPIRE performed at the World Trade Center Plaza , and Multi-Media artist, Doris Chase . I also received a number of grants from Meet The Composers and The New York Council on the Arts.
At this time, my wife and I formed our own company, CONTEMPORARY MYTHMAKERS , and traveled to various locals around the world, creating dance pieces based on the surrounding environment. It was in the creation of DEMETER'S DAUGHTERS in Paris FR , that I had the good fortune to work with the world famous Baschet Brothers ( Francois and Bernard ), creators of the Baschet Sound Schulptures . After spending a summer with them in Paris and San Michael Sur Orge, the Baschet's gave me five of their sculptures to continue my work see YouTube and go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J6T7_4oHPSk The Baschet Sound Sculptures at Sunrise Studios
We lived for a summer among lobster fisherman on the island of Vinalhaven, off the coast of Maine, and created IMAGES OF VINALHAVEN a multi-media piece with film, slides and sculptures. I then returned to the Pacific Northwest for a summer and created RAFTING, AN OREGON JOURNEY , featuring the music of Mark Whitecage, Perry Robinson, Jeanne Lee and myself. These pieces were later performed HEROD ATTICUS THEATER - Athens, Greece, LINCOLN CENTER FESTIVAL - New York City, BLOSSOM MUSIC FESTIVAL - Cleveland, OH, EXPERIMENTAL INTERMEDIA FOUNDATION - New York City, BALTIMORE MUSEUM OF ART - Baltimore, MD .
I returned to portland and performed with various groups - ONE WORLD VISION, at such festivals as Artquake - THE GONE ORCHESTRA, Bumbershoot Music Festival , KINGS ON STRAW MATS, Winingstad Theater, TRES GONE Multiple venues. Upon the death of Joe Campbell, I created a tribute CD, THE HERO'S JOURNEY based on his book, The Hero with a Thousand Faces. It was a spoken Opera that was performed in a very unique way. THE HERO'S JOURNEY, created a walking tour throughout the underground of theX-Ray Cafe , playing the Opera, taking people from room to room recreating the various episodes of the Hero's Journey, and eventually returning the audience to the streets of Portland. In addition to this, I also played with country and western bands and toured Canada with the Shrine Circus. I collaberated with Film-maker and video artistMichael Lastra to create a number of video works such as: CHIEF SEATTLE, shot in Silver Falls State Park and: MEMORIES '99, a Multi-media video, featuring the sculpture and poetry of Lee Kelly, with the video work of Michael Lastra, and music by Michael Sterling, Armen Halburian, Stan Woods, and myself.
Currently, I have created my own record label - Mahaffay's Musical Archives - and am now playing live throughout the area with Tres Gone and am producing my own CD's and distributing them over the Internet through my website - www.myspace.com/cdarchives.
"Follow your Bliss" Joe Campbell