Independent — Visit Matt's website
Matt Murphy has spent the past twenty years of his life perfecting his craft as a drummer and percussionist. While
attending Western Illinois University, Matt had the opportunity to perform with the Grammy Nominated Western
Illinois University’s Jazz Studio Orchestra, Arturo Sandoval, Clark Terry and Diane Schurr, to name a few. After
graduating college, Matt was afforded the opportunity to travel the country with Caribbean/Pop sensations, The Steel
Bandits. During his tenure with this outstanding group, Matt was seen playing to sold out venues, arenas and
auditoriums from the Sunset Strip in Los Angeles, to the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta, to tours through Europe
and practically everywhere in between.
After spending two years with the ‘Bandits, he moved on to working several festivals, clinics and concerts throughout
North America and Europe, playing with such groups as the Stephen Kummer Trio, Mangú, and Stan Sykes and
Company. This gave Matt the unique opportunity to master many styles ranging from Jazz to Latin to the soulful
sounds of R ‘n B, Motown and beyond. His uncanny knack “to know exactly what to play, and when to play it” has
helped Matt successfully take the drum seat in every musical setting.
Beginning in 1998, Matt assumed the responsibility of Musical Director for Norwegian Cruise Line, performing as an
artist as well as departmental manager on several of Norwegian’s vessels within the fleet of nine ships. It was during
that time that Mangú completed a nine-month tour of Miami, Mexico and the Caribbean Islands. They had played for
thousands of satisfied audience members at the Latin Music Festival in St. Thomas in 2001. Immediately following
that successful tour, Matt was asked to back up the soulful singing sensation Stan Sykes, as part of Stan Sykes and
Company. It was during 2001 and 2002 that Stan and the gang, spent time touring Europe, North America and the
In 2002, Hollywood has called for Matt’s knowledge of music in television. Working both in front and behind the
camera’s lens, Matt can be seen on several television programs starting in 2002, as a sideline musician. Matt is also
keeping very busy, working as Music Consultant for the new Partridge Family series for MTV Networks, as well as
the internationally famous prime time hit from Warner Brothers, the Gilmore Girls.
Moving to Las Vegas in the fall of 2005 proved to be one of Matt's smartest moves. Within weeks of coming to town,
Matt was asked to take the drum seat for "The Rat Pack Tribute". 'This show brings back the good ol’ days when
Vegas was Vegas. ‘Musically, it's one of my favorite shows and pays homage to some of the finest entertainers the
world has ever seen- Frank, Sammy and Dean,' Murphy was quoted saying in an interview after a show. Matt has also
been seen around town working for various national touring artists including: Clint Holmes, Ronnie Foster, The
Coasters, Platters & Marvettes, among others. Beginning in the fall of 2006, Matt was afforded the opportunity to
teach drum set lessons to students within the percussion program at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. As one
could imagine this is quite an honor and Matt takes this opportunity very seriously.
Currently Matt holds down the drum seat for International Superstar, Charo. During her captivating show, Matt shows
his ability to traverse through many musical styles, which has become his trademark. Accompanied on the stage with
World-Class Musicians, Matt also leads his own Caribbean Jazz project Caribé with WIU roommate, Chris Patterson.
Matt’s trio has been working steadily around Las Vegas for several years, and have recently started a very successful
run at Mandalay Bay, with no end in sight. 2010 also marked the completion of Matt’s highly anticipated tutor, A
Drummer’s Guide to Afro-Caribbean Grooves. This text has been given numerous accolades from the percussion
industry’s greatest, authors, performers and educators.
Matt Murphy is indeed an All-American percussionist with a global perspective that permeates his grooves, style, and
musicianship. He is a proud endorser and clinician for; Drum Workshop Drums and Hardware, SABIAN Cymbals,
Regal Tip sticks and Brushes, Aquarian Drumheads, Audix Microphones, Prologix practice products and Humes and
Berg bags and cases. Matt is also a proud member of the Professional Drum Teacher’s Guild and Hudson Music’s
Teacher’s Integration Program.
Snare - single ply Texture Coated on top, Classic Clear snare side
Toms - single ply Texture Coated on top and bottom
Bass Drum - Superkick II on the batter, Regulator on the resonant side