Matt Vrba has racked up more life experience than most of us ever will, and he happens to be one of the few who can put that life into music. Born in a small suburb outside Chicago, Matt's early musical influences ranged from The Beatles, to the blues. Throughout his childhood he played piano, trombone, saxophone, and finally at age 13 he picked up the guitar. Matt left Chicago shortly after high school and immediately his affinity for the road presented itself. During his travels he began writing music. After several years, dozens of songs, and a few hundred thousand miles, Matt landed in California.
His debut album "Everywhere In Between" (released in June of 2004), an extroverted and melodically undeniable look into love, life, family and humankind, beautifully showcases Vrba’s skills as a songwriter. Many of the songs on the album were written during, or inspired by his famous 3200-mile cross-country walk from San Francisco to Virginia Beach, and they truly illuminate the vision and simple brilliance of this old soul who is sure to be a fixture in the music world for a long time. For this album, Matt, and producer Adam Berkowitz, were able to line up a group of distinguished musicians including; Danny Eisenberg(Counting Crows and Ryan Adams), Adam Berkowitz(Noelle Hampton and Wake), Eric Schramm(Superdiamond), Mike Godwin(Heather Combs and The Doobie Brothers), and Austin DeLone(Elvis Costello and The Fabulous Thunderbirds.
For his sophmore effort Vrba decided to go back to basics and record a live solo acoustic album. In July of 2005 Vrba, and Executive Producer JR Meyer held an intimate house concert in Denver Colorado and recorded over three hours of music in front of a live audience. Meyer and Vrba then selected 12 tracks from the session which would become "Live @ JR's". The organic live feel of the record truly highlights Vrba's diverse songwriting and his (often overlooked) excellent guitar work.
In the Fall of 2005 Vrba relocated to Portland, Oregon and established himself as a fixture on the local scene virtually overnight. Since forming his current band, a Portland based trio, Matt's sound has morphed into a high-octane, alt-country style with solid, hooky songwriting akin to artists like Glen Phillips and Ryan Adams. His lyrical style, although much grittier, hints at influences from Jason Mraz and Jack Johnson. But let there be no mistake, Vrba’s sound is all his own. In addition to his superb songwriting and musicianship, Vrba is a natural onstage. Contagiously energetic and charismatic, he controls the crowd with ease, and makes each show a unique and entertaining event.
Vrba has recently begun work on his third full-length album with the help of an all-star crew including legendary A & R man Don Grierson who was responsible for discovering such bands as Heart, Cheap Trick, and The Indigo Girls. Also working on the new record are Portland powerhouses Mark Evilsizer on drums (Al Perez Band) and Chris Chard on bass (Rye Hollow) who act as Vrba’s backing band.
The last two years have been kind to Vrba and the future looks even brighter. His legenday stage presence and non-stop work ethic has been wowing audiences, and industry folk, across America at venues ranging from L.A.'s famed Viper Room and The Rockwood Music Hall in NYC, to huge festivals like the Bite Of Seattle and San Francisco's North Beach Festival. In the last 24 months Matt has played over 300 shows in 34 states and 3 countries. Check out Matt Vrba’s impressive list of accomplishments over the last few years.
June 2004 Matt and his band play main Stage slots at two of San Francisco's biggest festivals (North Beach and Union St)
July 2004 "Everywhere In Between" released
September 2004 "Everywhere In Between" makes Cd Baby's best seller's list where it will sit for over a year
October 2004 Matt is chosen by an elite group of producers, A & R execs, and hit songwriters to showcase at the prestigious Durango Songwriters Convention
January 2005 Matt sells first 1000 copies of "Everywhere In Between" and plays Tsunami benefit at Slim's in San Francisco
February 2005 Matt signs national distribution deal with San Francisco based IDC
April 2005 Matt and the band headline at Johnny Depp's L.A. hotspot The Viper Room
April/May 2005 Matt heads out on 22 city Coast-to-coast tour with Misty Odell
July 2005 "Live @ JR's" recorded in Denver
September 2005 Matt is featured as the “artist of the day” on worldwide internet radio station Whole Wheat Radio www.wholewheatradio.org
November 2005 Midwestern tour
December 2005 "Live @ JR's" release party at Rock Island in Denver
IN 2005 MATT VRBA PLAYED 146 SHOWS IN 32 STATES AND 3 COUNTRIES !!!
February 2006 Matt selected as a finalist by Portland’s 107.5 FM to open for Bon Jovi at Portland's Rose Garden
March/April 2006 Matt heads out for "Live at JR's" solo acoustic tour of the Western United States
Summer 2006 Matt and his band are selected to play main stage slots a number of large festivals including The Bite Of Seattle (Seattle/ est. attendance 500,000), The Cherry Creek Arts Festival (Denver/ est. attendance 400,000), The Oregon State Fair (Salem/ est. attendance 500,000)
June 2006 Four of Matt’s song’s selected for use in upcoming independent feature film “All In A Night’s Work”
July 2006 Matt signs publishing/licensing deal with Portland based Rumblefish, and Matt is selected for a Comcast On-Demand special featuring bands in the Pacific Northwest.
November 2006 “Time Well Spent” selected for Bridges CD Project benefiting The Pacific Oncology Cancer Center
December 2006 Video for “Time Well Spent” shot by Marin County Director Benjamin Lopata is selected for the Tiburon Film Festival, music video category.
January 2007 The Mustache Song selected for use in international documentary “The Glorious Mustache Challenge”