Scott Mathews

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This article is about the American producer/musician. For the British musician, see Scott Matthews. For the Australian musician, see Scott Matthew.
Scott Mathews
Sm10 *.jpg
Scott Mathews at TikiTown, USA
Born (1955-07-25) July 25, 1955 (age 60)
Sacramento, California, United States
Occupation Music Producer, Composer, Multi-Instrumentalist, Vocalist, Entertainment Media Executive, Entrepreneur
Spouse(s) Ko Mathews
Children Thomas Wilson Mathews and Ava Grace Mathews

Scott Mathews (born July 25, 1955) is an American music producer, composer, performer and entrepreneur. With sales of more than 40 million units and downloads sold as a music producer, composer, multi-instrumentalist, vocalist and music publisher, he has earned 20+ gold and multi-platinum RIAA Certification awards and has contributed to five decades of GRAMMY and/or Oscar Award winning projects.[1] He has produced Elvis Costello, Roy Orbison, Jerry Garcia, Huey Lewis, Johnny Cash, John Hiatt, Nick Lowe, Dick Dale, Sammy Hagar, Van Dyke Parks, Bob Weir and many others. He has written songs and/or recorded with major artists from Barbra Streisand to John Lee Hooker, including Keith Richards, George Harrison, Mick Jagger, The Beach Boys, Eric Clapton, Van Morrison, Bonnie Raitt, David Bowie, Steve Perry, Todd Rundgren, Robert Cray, Ry Cooder, The Tubes, Bobby Womack, Sammy Hagar, Steven Stills, Patti LaBelle, Dr. John and Raphael Saadiq. He has performed on various musical instruments and vocals with Neil Young, Billie Joe Armstrong of Green Day, John Fogerty, Kid Rock, Brian Wilson, Zac Brown, Steve Miller, Carlos Santana, James Hetfield of Metallica, Ringo Starr, Jimmy Buffett, Tom Waits, Etta James, Chris Isaak, Pat Monahan of Train, Joe Walsh, Dwight Yoakam, Clint Black, Boz Scaggs, Joe Satriani and many more. His musical contributions appear on several Grammy Award and Oscar Award winning releases.[2][3] As a recording artist, he recorded for Capitol Records and established the video department at Capitol just prior to MTV.[4] He has made the Billboard MagazineTop 40 list in multiple genres most every year since he began in 1976. The iconic recording artists he has worked with includes more than 90 inductees of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. He owns and operates a private studio, TikiTown, along with founding and co-founding four successful production and publishing companies. He is the Chief Creative Officer of proTunes, an online b2b music search and licensing solution based in Beverly Hills and Dublin. He also serves as Chairman of the San Francisco Bay Area Council of Little Kids Rock, the nation’s leading nonprofit provider of music instruction, works as an expert consultant to The United States Library of Congress in the Performing Arts department and developed the SFSU Performing Arts Certificate Program at San Francisco State University.[5]

Early days[edit]

Mathews began his professional music career very young.[4] At 15 he got his first break playing with American blues musician Elvin Bishop at San Francisco's legendary Fillmore Auditorium.[6][7] Too young to drive, he rode with his older band members to Hollywood to 'get a record deal' and walked up and down Sunset Blvd., stopping at every company with the words 'music' or 'records' in its name. Barry White was the one person to let them in and play their live cassette recording. White's only comment came after he stopped the tape to ask who the drummer was - Mathews raised his hand, prompting a deep-toned "right on" from White. Returning to Sacramento, Mathews soon met Steve Perry and began writing songs with a plan to return to LA to record a proper demo with their new band, Ice. They recorded their original material at The Record Plant during the day while Stevie Wonder recorded his classic Talking Book in the same room by night. Wonder heard the drums on the Ice project and asked Mathews if he could use his old Gretsch kit that was set up and proceeded to play drums on the smash Superstition while simultaneously singing a vocal (without any musical accompaniment). Ice's project was not so fortunate as the funding ran out before Perry's vocals were completed and unfortunately was never released. At age 17, with eight years of playing in bands, a costly unfinished group recording under his belt, Mathews decided to focus on songwriting and learning to read and write music on a number of musical instruments. The recording studio represented endless possibilities and creativity whereas bands meant the same four or five guys playing the same songs and less growth opportunity.[8][not in citation given]

Session musician to songwriter[edit]

Mathews began seeking recording sessions to contribute to no matter what musical genre or monetary reward was involved. After making some key connections he was heralded in session circles as a 'child prodigy' for his multi-instrumentalist talents and began getting messages from his mother like; "some guy that said his name was Boz Scaggs called" - it was time to leave Sacramento. Mathews loaded up his school credits with night classes and graduated high school early to continue on as a burgeoning session musician working between San Francisco and Los Angeles. In 1973 Mathews met future long-time collaborator Ron Nagle. Nagle was already an established songwriter and recording artist for Warner Brothers and had made the cult-classic, 'Bad Rice'.[9][10] Nagle and Mathews teamed up and began to write and record material in Nagle's garage studio in San Francisco. Turning 18, Mathews moved to Sausalito, CA, sharing a house with David Jenkins (musician) of Pablo Cruise, making a living as a session musician while writing and producing 'blueprints for records' with Nagle.[11] Some of the session work included radio and television jingles and Mathews soon began producing them for various ad agencies, playing all the musical instruments and singing the vocals himself. Strangely, this path paved the way for Roy Orbison to be the very first artist Mathews ever produced in the recording studio.[1] Mathews achieved this having convinced a large advertising agency he could get Orbison to license his biggest worldwide hit, Oh, Pretty Woman for "Tone Soap", a women's soap product. He was surprised when they took him up on the offer and instantly went to work on how to contact Orbison's manager, finally he did and together with Orbison, they figured out the terms for what a #1 song with its original singer should cost. They arrived at a high number for the song and another high number for the artist, but the agency agreed and Mathews was in the studio performing all the instruments the next day. Orbison did one run through of the thirty second spot to warm up his voice and check the level of the microphone but it sounded perfect and Mathews called him into the control room to hear it. Orbison smiled and approved so they hopped in his limo and went out for a three-hour lunch to celebrate. The campaign was such a success that Mathews followed it up with another legendary artist, Johnny Cash on Victoria Station (restaurant) radio ads with exactly the same formula. These projects proved to be Mathews' first and a first for commercials to feature major hit recording artists in ad campaigns which has become commonplace today, decades later. [12]

Ron Nagle's producer from his solo record, Jack Nitzsche, heard some of the duo's new material and hired them to work on film scores and record projects. Nitzsche was the persuasive, cognitive musical wheel in the studio works of Phil Spector and the early to mid-period records by The Rolling Stones. His arrangements adorned many hits by Jackie DeShannon, Gene Pitney, Darlene Love, The Crystals, The Righteous Brothers, Neil Young, etc. although he had only one hit under his name, "The Lonely Surfer", released in 1963. Later, he would win an Oscar for co-composing "Up Where We Belong." In Nitzsche, Mathews found his mentor and 'godfather' in the music business and high profile projects followed soon after.[13][14] Performing and producing sessions under Nitzsche, Mathews worked on his first movie soundtrack, the multiple Oscar winning film, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest and was Nitzsche's multi-instrumentalist and assistant on various recording projects with major artists such as Mick Jagger, Barbra Streisand, Glen Campbell, Ry Cooder, Dr. John and a plethora others.[13] In 1977, Barbra Streisand heard one of Mathews and Nagle's songs at a meeting with Jack Nitzsche. She asked to meet with the two composers and they got along so well, the three immediately began writing together in a bungalow at The Beverly Hills Hotel. The end result was Mathews and Nagle landed two previously written songs on Streisand Superman, selling more than five million units upon release. They also wrote and published songs by The Tubes including the cult favorite, "Don't Touch Me There", Sammy Hagar, Jefferson Starship, Pablo Cruise, Michelle Phillips and many others.[15] Mathews had a many roles on Glen Campbell's final platinum release, Southern Nights album on Capitol Records as he choose material (including the title song), rehearsed the new songs with Campbell, hired the musicians with Nitzsche and played drums and dobro on the sessions.[16] and provided multi-instrumentation and/or vocals with such artists as; Labelle, Bobby Womack, David Crosby, The Pointer Sisters, Roky Erikson, David Foster, Giorgio Moroder, Elvin Bishop, Sammy Hagar, Eddie Money and Graham Nash. During this time, Mathews and Nagle began fielding offers to sign a production deal from major labels including, A&M and Capitol Records. With the new distinction of being hit songwriters and getting more requests from artists for material, they became more business savvy and turned down all offers if the artist tried to get them to assign them a piece of the publishing rights. In 1979, Nitzsche set Mathews up with a studio full of instruments in Los Angeles and had him play the soundtrack for the critically acclaimed film, Hardcore (1979 film), starring George C. Scott. Next, Mathews' friend Robin Williams contacted him to help with a musical finale for his sold out stand-up comedy shows in San Francisco (The Boarding House) and New York (The Copacabana Nightclub). After signing a record deal with Casablanca Records to record the Copacabana shows, the result was an instant Grammy Award winning album, "Reality, What a Concept", the first Grammy award winning project for both Williams and Mathews.[17][18]

Acting as Fluke Starbucker[edit]

As an actor, Mathews starred as Fluke Starbucker (e.g., Luke Skywalker) in the 1977 Star Wars parody Hardware Wars, considered to be the most profitable short film of all time, grossing in excess of $1,000,000.00: considering its paltry $8,000.00 budget. Its relative profit margin was even better than Star Wars.

George Lucas said in an 1999 interview on the UK's The Big Breakfast television show that Hardware Wars was his favorite Star Wars parody. In 2003, the film was honored by Lucasfilm when it was given the Pioneer Award at that year's The Official Star Wars Fan Film Awards. In August 2010, Time magazine listed it as one of the top 10 Star Wars fanfilms.[19][20]

Capitol Records recording artist[edit]

Following Mathews' writing and production work with artists on A&M Records the label approached him and Nagle to build a band project. Nagle and Mathews, funded by A&M, wrote and produced material under the name Dūrocs. The duo ended up signing with Capitol Records as a production company to produce artists already on the label and/or new artists they brought in. Capitol's Artists and repertoire division pushed for Mathews and Nagle to record their own album as the first project with the label and the duo agreed although the so-called 'band', Durocs, never had any intention of performing live.[11] Originally labeled as new wave and power pop, Dūrocs wrote and produced material that was more diverse and explored Mathews and Nagle's interests in the styles of The Brill Building, Leiber and Stoller and Phil Spector with Mathews playing more virtually all of the musical instruments earning him the title of a 'wunderkind' in Rolling Stone Magazine from writer and senior editor, Ben Fong-Torres.[15] Their 1979 self-titled album received a raving 5 star rating from senior editor, David Fricke in Rolling Stone and achieved worldwide critic acclaim and hit top ten status in sales and radio in Europe. Being writers and producers first and foremost, Durocs never considered putting a band together in support of the album which shocked Capitol's executives, especially the promotion department which had no idea how to promote the 'non-band'. En lieu of touring, they produced lavish, humorous and highly praised music videos for their two singles which ultimately proved to be slightly ahead of their time. Dūrocs left Capitol late in 1980 to focus on production and songwriting for other artists but before exiting, they set a live pig loose in the Capitol Tower during a quarterly executive meeting with the label.[21] In 1981 the video department Dūrocs built and helped staff became a revenue cash cow at Capitol as the label was prepared to make promotional videos for the new MTV television channel which launched the careers of such artists as; Duran Duran, Heart, Billy Idol, Queen, Crowded House, Tina Turner, The Beastie Boys and a huge list of other major video stars in the 1980s.[21][22]

The Beach Boys[edit]

Mathews' talents on the Dūrocs project caught the attention of Carl Wilson who passed the LP on to Brian Wilson and they invited Mathews to play and sing with The Beach Boys in the studio. After becoming close friends and musical collaborators, Mathews was invited to become a full-fledged member of The Beach Boys, thus replacing their brother, Dennis Wilson who had fallen on tough times.[23][24][25][26][not in citation given] He became known as the fifth Beach Boy after his consistent behind-the-scenes work.[27] Mathews declined the once-in-a-lifetime offer citing his main aversion to touring but did perform with them on a number of occasions in California.[citation needed] Over the years Mathews continued to write songs with the Wilsons and work on and off with the group as a session musician, singer and music director for his planned "Pet Sounds Live" world tour project that he designed and began spearheading in 1983 with full participation from Brian Wilson (complete with his original session charts offered). Mathews was aware that all the principles of the band did not approve of the idea and on December 31, 1991, while up at Lake Tahoe with Audrey Wilson (the mother of Brian, Dennis and Carl) and the band, he spoke with Audrey about not pursuing the Pet Sounds performance project because of the friction within the band. He preferred to protect his relationship with one of his closest friends, Carl Wilson who had told him at the beginning that it would not be an easy task and it was all Mathews' to do. In appreciation for Mathews' concept, support and attempt to see it through, the Wilson brothers and The Beach Boys' manager had RIAA white matte gold and platinum records sent to Mathews upon settling their decades-long lawsuit with Capitol Records (who had previously refused to acknowledge the album's sales numbers).[citation needed] Aside from the principle members of the band and management, Mathews is the only person to receive these official awards.[citation needed] The tour finally did take flight when Brian Wilson performed solo with his band on a world tour of Pet Sounds to huge critical and public acclaim and made the Grammy Award-winning, Pet Sounds Live (earning another gold record for Wilson and Mathews) 20 years later.


In the beginning of the 1980s, Mathews and Nagle officially founded their ultra-private recording studio inside their vast compound on the top of Bernal Heights in San Francisco, called The Pig Pen.[28] One of Mathews' and Nagle's first recordings in the new studio was sound design for Cat People, which was used on the soundtrack recording featuring David Bowie and Stevie Ray Vaughan and spawned a surprise hit single, Cat People (Putting Out Fire).[29] Inside and outside of The Pen, Mathews performed with and/or produced for artists such as: George Harrison, Elvis Costello, Ringo Starr, Eric Clapton, Jerry Garcia, Steve Miller (musician), B.B. King, Todd Rundgren, Boz Scaggs, John Hiatt, Ry Cooder, Sammy Hagar, Gary Brooker, R.E.M.'s Peter Buck and Dick Dale.[30] In 1983, Mathews co-produced and performed multiple instruments on John Hiatt's Riding with the King. During the making of the album (made at The Pen), Hiatt was staying at Mathews' house next door and one morning Mathews recounted a strange dream about flying in an old plane with Elvis Presley but not being able to see his face because of the light reflecting off The King's rhinestones and gold rings. Hiatt wrote all the imagery down and the title song was born. One of the biggest surprises of the 1980s was the extensive and successful work Mathews did with John Lee Hooker. On a song for the Grammy Award-winning album, The Healer, Bonnie Raitt, Hooker and Mathews were in the studio set to record a completely different song when Hooker began playing his, In the Mood. Raitt and Mathews fell right in after him and in one take, made one of the all-time-biggest-selling crossover hits in the blues genre. Mathews had never heard the song before they played it. Mathews produced the only recorded pairing of Elvis Costello and Jerry Garcia on "Sweetwater" in 1989 although its release was held up until 1995. Also in 1989, Mathews recorded and toured the world with, Todd Rundgren. Mathews worked closely with Rundgren on recording Nearly Human and for the tours, Rundgren had a U-shaped stage built for Mathews so he could perform all forms of percussion, keyboards, guitar (on tour, Mathews usually used Eric Clapton's famous psychedelic painted Gibson SG, The Fool (guitar) that Clapton used for most of his work in Cream (band)) as well as being a featured vocalist.[31][32] Unable do studio work until the Rundgren tour ended, Mathews assisted Jack Nitzsche in assembling an eclectic supergroup to record the soundtrack for the Dennis Hopper directed film, The Hot Spot. The stellar unlikely lineup was Miles Davis, John Lee Hooker, Taj Mahal, Earl Palmer and Roy Rogers (instead of Nitzsche's first call, Ry Cooder who was not available). During each session, Nitzsche contacted Mathews by phone to play different takes and once to report tensions in the studio stemming from Hooker's primitive style in stark contrast to Davis' level of musicality. Mathews knew Hookers love of storytelling and the sessions they had done always began after his true tales of wild and hilarious adventures. Mathews advised to let them get well acquainted and loosened up before any further recording. The next call from Nitzsche was to say 'thanks' and the sessions were 'pure magic'.


Mathews and Nagle co-wrote the 1990 Dave Edmunds worldwide hit and album title song, "Closer to the Flame".[33][34] In the same year, Chuck Prophet asked Mathews to produce his debut record, Brother Aldo. Mathews performed many different instruments on the record and Prophet found success as one of the first emerging artist signings and the two combined forces for a Jimi Hendrix tribute album, "If 6 Was 9." Following that, Mathews produced John Wesley Harding's "Why We Fight" for Sire Records, made 2nd Wind with Todd Rundgren and did a world tour in support of the release. Upon ending the tour in Osaka, Japan, Mathews was invited by Huey Lewis and the News to join their tour as a 'special guest' on a song the band performed that he and Nagle had written. The year ended with Mathews recording yet another John Lee Hooker bestseller, Mr. Lucky that featured Keith Richards, Carlos Santana and Ry Cooder, Van Morrison and many other greats.[35]

In 1991, Mathews moved to Marin County and founded Hit or Myth Productions, Inc.[13][24] Using his vast experience from the corporate music industry and his wont to escape it before it collapsed, he began his own independent dream job and under the aegis of Hit or Myth Productions Mathews hired his own A&R staff for recruiting primarily emerging artists and bought a split level house in Mill Valley, CA on the edge of San Francisco Bay which became his ideal, private recording studio. Tikitown, (named for the enormous Tiki statues that surround it) was built on the philosophy of intimacy, comfort and to not feeling like a recording studio. Mathews said he felt he had lived half of his life 'in caves' so TikiTown features sweeping views of the bay, providing artists with a 'bubble' environment to focus on their music without any disturbance or interaction from anyone. Van Morrison was one of the first artists Mathews brought into the studio and he loved it so much he set up an entire large room as a gym so he could work out while there.[13][24] TikiTown is also renowned for its museum level quality of music memorabilia and ultra rare Hall of Fame type pieces.[36]

In 1992, Mathews produced Trip Shakespeare for A&M Records. The band imploded soon after and became the Dan Wilson led, Semisonic. Also that year Mathews did John Lee Hooker's album "Boom Boom", the title song of which was originally a hit in 1962 and again thirty years later.[35] In 1993 Mathews and music journalist Joel Selvin met with Dick Dale in Twenty-nine Palms, CA. Their meeting convinced Dale to come out of retirement and record with Mathews. Dale experienced a renewed interest in his music and earned the #1 college radio record for his Tribal Thunder comeback LP.[37] In the same year, Mathews wrote the hit title song for Dave Edmunds' Closer to the Flame album on Capitol Records. He also produced a variety of emerging artists such as "The Loved Ones", The Bobs and John Wesley Harding as well as seasoned artists such as The Rubinoos, blues virtuoso, Roy Rogers and performed and sang on the platinum Good Vibrations: Thirty Years of The Beach Boys. He produced and performed on Just Say Roe (album), a 1994 benefit pro-choice release on Sire Records that featured Madonna, David Byrne, and more. He also produced and performed on Dick Dale's "Unknown Territory" and wrote NRBQ's single off the "Message from the Mess Age" LP on Sire Records. 1995 brought the release of the legendary Elvis Costello and Jerry Garcia live album Mathews produced, "Sweetwater" on which he performed along with featured guests; Nick Lowe, Bob Weir, Sammy Hagar, James Burton and Elvis Presley's rhythm section. Also that year, he made "Chill Out" by John Lee Hooker featuring Carlos Santana, a Hawaiian crossover LP with Kapono Beamer and to balance things out, he produced "Bugs & Friends Sing: The Beatles, a successful blend of the Warner Brothers' Looney Tunes cartoon characters 'singing' classic Beatles songs for Rhino Records / Wea. In 1996 while producing and writing with Booker T. Jones he met engineer Tom Luekens, who remains Mathews' chief engineer today.[38][38][39] He also wrote songs with his writing partner, Al Anderson (NRBQ) for a solo record, had a song on The Tubes' Goin' Down the Tubes for A&M Records, produced Dick Dale for the huge Cowabunga! The Surf Box from Rhino / Wea as well as producing Dale on another LP, Calling Up Spirits, performed on Blue Gold with Taj Mahal (musician) and JJ Cale and provided photography for The Vandals, Oi to the World. In 1997, Mathews collaborated with Huey Lewis to write and produce songs for the soundtrack of the Oscar Award nominated film, Wag the Dog featuring Dustin Hoffman and Robert De Niro.[40] He also performed as an artist with Philip Aaberg on a Brian Wilson medley for Summer Solstice: A Windham Hill Collection released by BMG and produced the Dick Dale Box Set, Better Shred than Dead. His productions and performances appeared in 1998 on The Best of John Hiatt project for Capitol Records and The Best of Friends by John Lee Hooker with, Eric Clapton, Bonnie Raitt, Carlos Santana, Van Morrison, Nick Lowe, Los Lobos, Ben Harper, Ry Cooder, Ike Turner and a plethora of other major guests. Mathews also discovered and produced two brilliant but overlooked LPs for the Virgin-Whore Complex, a studio band fronted by recluse Peter Getty, (J. Paul Getty's grandson and son of Gordon Getty), another by singer/songwriter, Jim Greer and one by the band Zircus. in 1998 Mathews collaborated on songs for The Rubinoos, and Tommy Castro while also performing in the studio and one a U.S. tour with The Grateful Dead keyboardist, Vince Welnick in Missing Man Formation, named for the loss of Jerry Garcia. In 1998, he worked with John Lee Hooker and John Hammond Jr. on Fish-Tree-Water Blues, a project that also featured Etta James, Mavis Staples, Branford Marsalis, Keb' Mo' and other greats. Finishing out the decade, he produced more emerging artists and contributed a track as Durocs to More Oar: A Tribute to the Skip Spence Album that featured Robert Plant, Beck, Tom Waits, Mudhoney and many other Spence disciples. He also performed multi-instruments and vocals on Todd Rundgren's Live in Chicago and provided songwriting for Dave Edmunds' King Biscuit Flower Hour.[3]


In 2000, The Beach Boys released Keepin' the Summer Alive / Beach Boys (album) and Greatest Hits, Vol 3, both featured Mathews as a guest artist on vocals and drums. A&M put out "20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of the Tubes" that featured two Mathews/Nagle songs and Tommy Castro released "Live at the Fillmore" with a song Mathews penned. One of standout productions Mathews' helmed that year was "The Hurting Business" by Chuck Prophet. 2001 was a big year for producing several emerging artists at TikiTown but Mathews also produced "Ridin' Mighty High" for R&B legend, Alfred "Pee Wee" Ellis, who co-wrote and arranged many of classic James Brown hits of the 1960s. Following that he produced, performed and wrote songs for one of the original electric blues greats, Guitar Shorty. Shorty is known for his work with Ray Charles, Willie Dixon, Guitar Slim, and Sam Cooke but is best known as the tutor and major inspiration to his half-brother in-law, Jimi Hendrix who studied Shorty's explosive guitar solos and wild stage antics while learning guitar in Seattle, Washington.[35] John Hiatt and Rosanne Cash released Mathews' production of The Way We Make a Broken Heart, a Hiatt written song that Mathews arranged and performed all the instruments on. When Geffen Records didn't release it as a single after it was originally cut in the 1980s, Cash re-recorded it with the same arrangement Mathews created, resulting in a #1 country hit in 1987. Three more Mathews produced songs were included in this Hiatt set. In 2002, Mathews was a featured performer on "20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of Elvin Bishop". Following that was "The Final Recordings, Vol 1: Face to Face" a collection of John Lee Hooker's unreleased songs from his very last studio recordings. Mathews performed with Van Morrison and Hooker as well as on many cuts with just Hooker himself. Dave Edmunds released Mathews' material on his 'best of' set, "Sabre Dance' that contained material all the way back to his 1960s Welsh band, Love Sculpture. In 2003, another multi-Grammy Award release was Martin Scorsese Presents the Blues: A Musical Journey, the soundtrack to the Scorsese PBS documentary series, The Blues and reached #2 on Billboard chart. Regarded as the most comprehensive blues set, it traced the roots of the music from 1920 - 2003 and stands as one Mathews' favorite projects to perform on. A short list of icons on the box set are: Bessie Smith, Blind Lemon Jefferson, "Ma" Rainey, Louis Armstrong, Charlie Patton, Jimmie Rodgers, Son House, Lead Belly, Billie Holiday, Robert Johnson, Count Basie, T-Bone Walker, Louis Jordon, Elmore James, Big Mama Thornton, Muddy Waters, Fats Domino, Ray Charles, Elvis Presley, Howlin' Wolf, Bo Diddley, Chuck Berry, Bob Dylan, jimi Hendrix, B.B. King and most every other major contributor to the art form. Mathews appears with Bonnie Raitt and John Lee Hooker. In 2004 Mathews co-produced a "Roy Tyler" album, "Three Way Calling" and joined forces with Raphael Saadiq. He also discovered, signed and produced a fun and reckless band just of High School called Rock n Roll Soldiers and got them a recording deal with Atlantic Records. Recordings Mathews had made in the 1980s with Roky Erickson as part of the main personnel were finally released to huge acclaim on "I Have Always Been Here Before: The Roky Erickson Anthology, a two CD set that featured 13th Floor Elevators classics on one disc and the near frightening material that Mathews worked on the other disc. In 2006, the influential surf rock band, The Sandals who provided the soundtrack to Bruce Brown's ultimate surf film classic, The Endless Summer reunited with Brown for a 30 year reunion concert and celebration of the film. Led by longtime friend, John Blakeley, Mathews joined all the other original members of the band as they performed the entire soundtrack for the concert. The show went so well, they returned to the studio and cut the soundtrack over again and it was released as "The Original Music from Bruce Brown's The Endless Summer." In 2006, the definitive, 84 track, four-CD, "Hooker [Box Set] was released showcasing the legendary 50 year career John Lee Hooker featuring several songs with Mathews.

Mathews founded a music-tech company with TPG co-founder, William S. Price that signed and produced an album with an Australian band (that soon broke up) and explored many different approaches to new music business models. While CEO of the new venture, Mathews turned TikiTown into company headquarters, worked closely with major management teams of such artists as Lady Gaga, Justin Timberlake, Taylor Swift, Beyonce and Live Nation and devoted nearly 2 full years to the effort before the two co-founders decided it was no longer their passion to pursue it any further. Mathews' work continued being released during his hiatus from recording, such as "American Music: The Hightone Records Story l Box Set that he produced for featuring Robert Cray, Dick Dale and others, "Gold" by John Lee Hooker that showcased more of Mathews' work with Bonnie Raitt, Carlos Santana, Van Morrison and Booker T. Jones among others and 'best of' packages by The Rubinoos, Roy Rogers, Labelle and a previously unreleased song with Van Morrison and John Lee Hooker called (curiously), "Don't Look Back" on Hooker's "Anthology:50 Years" On January 28, 2007 Mathews encored on vocals with Brian Wilson and Al Jardine at the final Pet Sounds live performance at the Paramount Theater in Oakland.[41] Following the Brian Wilson show, Mathews and Jardine began performing together for fun and Mathews helped Jardine finish his debut solo record that had been off and on since the 1980s. Mathews introduced Steve Miller who recorded a track with Jardine and before it was over, Neil Young, Glen Campbell, America, Flea, Stephen Stills, David Crosby and many all contributed to "A Postcard From California." Mathews' favorite track is from an unfinished The Beach Boys recording called "Don't Fight the Sea" which features Mathews on guitars and vocals with Brian Wilson, Bruce Johnston, Mike Love and a beautiful posthumous vocal from Carl Wilson. Mathews was sent the session files and performed his production at TikiTown alone, adding layers of vocal harmonies on top of the voice of his daughter's godfather, Carl Wilson. He described the experience and sound of singing with Carl and all The Beach Boys as they were in their prime as 'chilling.'


In December 2011, Mathews signed on as executive producer with the Hong Kong-based, Far West Entertainment. Less than two months after Mathews produced the #1 Billboard track "Dance On" with Pan Asian girl group Blush. Quincy Jones has signed on for management of the band and declared at the 2013 Grammy Awards, "they are the next big thing."[4][42]

Mathews chose to sit out on The Beach Boys major 50th Anniversary Celebration Reunion which involved a new album and world tour but did provide consultation during rehearsals. After all was going well in rehearsals, it was Mathews that urged the band (through Jardine) to get out and play some intimate shows with a live audience to see how the band reacted. The results were great and the tour went well with sold out shows all over the world.

In 2010, Mathews began dedicating more time to his favorite non-profit causes and was chosen to serve on the Gladstone Institutes' President's Council Committee. Mathews works closely with President R. Sanders Williams and is an ambassador in the world to raise awareness of Gladstone's work in the area of inspired science that impacts people's lives. The 2012 Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine was won by Gladstone Institutes' Shinya Yamanaka for his discovery of how to transform ordinary adult skin cells into cells that can develop into other cell types anywhere in the body.

On January 1, 2012, Mathews' vocals, guitar, keyboards, sampling and percussion work with Todd Rundgren was released on "A Capella/Nearly Human/2nd Wind on Edsel Records. On May 22, after nearly a year in negotiations with Capitol Records, Real Gone Music released the original Dūrocs record on CD and downloads. The Durocs negotiated for a limited edition vinyl series to be released exactly 33 1/3 years (representing the RPMs of an album) after the original record. Along with the original LP are eight previously unheard Dūrocs 'bone-us' tracks, all recorded shortly after the Capitol release. Worldwide reviews upon this re-release read; 'one of rock's lost masterpieces', 'a thrilling discovery - doesn't sound dated a bit', ' a lost gem - totally devastating catchy tunes', 'the hallmark of quality music' and has prompted more Durocs recordings to be prepared for release.[43]

In January 2013, Mathews began writing with Sammy Hagar and producing him at TikiTown on a new style of music for The Red Rocker. The new direction sounds like Sammy is today and conveys a laid back island vibe compared to his hard rocking metal days. Mathews describes it as "more rum, less tequila." In February, Mathews journeyed to Melbourne, Australia to conduct 'The Artist's MasterClass', a custom, hands on education program developed by John Tomaino and Mathews for emerging Australian recording artists. The program was hugely successful as they held MasterClasses in a huge beach house on the weekends and recorded with the artists in the studio during the week days. Mathews spent one month in Australia and developed a stable of artists that continues to grow for more MasterClasses and sessions to be held. While in Melbourne, Mathews received word his executive production work regarding publishing for Brian Wilson's collaborator, Van Dyke Parks on The Smile Sessions by The Beach Boys helped earn the Best Historical Album at the 55th Grammy Awards. Ron Nagle and Mathews are still writing music together and recording at TikiTown on a semi-regular basis for future releases. They have amassed nearly fifty songs since 2000 and are actively involved in placing their vast publishing catalog of several hundred titles for use in motion picture and television projects. On August 27, The Beach Boys released their 50th anniversary celebration with a six-CD collection of songs spanning the decades and features songs containing Mathews' musical and vocal contributions. "Made in California", on Capitol Records featured single is a previously unreleased Mike Love song that Mathews and Carl Wilson arranged and recorded the basic tracks for called "Goin' to the Beach".[44] On September 26, Rolling Stone Magazine gave 'four stars' and a glowing review to Roky Erickson for 'The Evil One' featuring Mathews' work. Senior music critic, David Fricke stating it brought; "surging glow - a most welcome spirit." [45] Mathews returned to Melbourne for another series of recording sessions with emerging talent from Australia while 'TikiTown' underwent major remodeling and updates. Now finished, TikiTown is operating to full capacity as Mathews' private studio. On its first week of release, Sammy Hagar's 'Friends' project debuted at #23 on the Billboard 200 chart. Mathews wrote material and played a plethora of instruments on the recordings with Hagar at TikiTown.[46]

On January 24, 2014, Mathews helped arrange for his longtime friend, Hal Blaine to be inducted at the 29th annual TEC Awards Hall of Fame at the NAMM show in Anaheim, CA. The evening also provided for a reunion with Todd Rundgren who won the Les Paul Award for his musical innovation.[47] While in Los Angeles, he received several more platinum and gold records for his contributions to various 'Best of' and 'Anthology' releases by David Bowie, Van Morrison, Eric Clapton, The Beach Boys and others. His music productions at Tikitown lessened while his entrepreneurial work in music/tech ramped up. By March, he relocated music/tech operations to Beverly Hills, CA as he signed on as Creative Director of proTunes, a start-up company developed in Ireland. On May 15, Mathews co-headlined a rare, all-acoustic, live performance at The Fillmore with friends, Billie Joe Armstrong of Green Day, James Hetfield of Metallica, Pat Monahan of Train, Sammy Hagar, Nancy Wilson of the band Heart and Joe Satriani and others.[48] On October 19, Mathews was honored with a Milley Award, a local Bay Area award for 'recognition and appreciation for his outstanding achievement in performing, creating and demonstrating his significant body of work, service to the arts community and artistic vision, diligence and perseverance.' On his latest award, Mathews was quoted; "It has been a lifetime of great fortune and I'm grateful for it. I have been able to live in the Bay Area, hermetically sealed in the studio, creating new music rather than re-creating it on stage and living the life of a carny. But I don't feel that the past can possibly provide what the future promises. The rear-view mirror is much smaller than the windshield."[23]

On March 16, 2015 Little Kids Rock, named Mathews as Chairman of San Francisco Bay Area Council. As the nation’s leading nonprofit provider of music instruction, instruments, curricula and professional development for public school music teachers, it is expanding its programming in the San Francisco Bay Area with Mathews' leadership. Little Kids Rock teaches the commercially contemporary musical styles of the past 60 years, including country, rock, reggae, Latin and R&B, among other genres, with a heavy focus on improvisation, composition, and getting kids to play on day one. They donate all of the instruments, curriculum and resources necessary to keep music thriving in underfunded public school districts nationwide, and serve approximately 200,000 children. “Music made a gigantic impact on my life at a very early age and it is imperative that all children have the opportunity to unlock their inner music and creativity, regardless of what neighborhood they are from or where they go to school,” says Mathews. “I am excited to energize an already successful and passionate council of local volunteers and donors to help bring this program into more kids’ lives!” Under Mathews’ guidance and leadership, Little Kids Rock’s Bay Area Council will raise over $360,000 in 2015 to go toward instrument donations, curriculum development, and other resources that will directly impact the lives of 6,572 students in 97 local schools who are currently running Little Kids Rock’s free program, and it will also fund training and donations for 50 new teachers to launch Little Kids Rock’s music program in their schools, enriching the lives of 3,240 additional students. By the end of 2015, Little Kids Rock will be unlocking a total of 9,812 students’ inner music makers in 147 schools.[5]


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