B i o g r a p h y
Michael Farquharson was born in Toronto, Canada. He began his musical journey in Grade 7, and throughout his high school years as a trombone player/euphonium player. During that time, he also developed a passion for writing/arranging, influenced by the many great Canadian musicians and bands, such as The Boss Brass, Lighthouse, Guess Who, etc. Around the age of 16, he bought his first electric bass and taught himself to play, primarily by transcribing bass parts from Beatles albums, and watching Joel DiBartolo of the Tonight Show band for technique.
Along with several of his friends from Georges Vanier High School in Toronto, they attended Humber College in Toronto. He played and wrote for the top bands at Humber, travelling extensively throughout Canada and Europe, including the Montreux Jazz Festival. With the Humber College "A" Band, he had a composition on the Juno nominated "On The Way to Montreux" album.
Michael went on to complete a Masters Degree at the world renowned New England Conservatory, where he studied with Dave Holland, Jimmy Giuffre, and Lydian Chromatic creator George Russell.
Michael's career in Toronto was very diverse, and included playing/writing/engineering/producing countless albums, jingles, radio/tv/film sessions, etc.
His live playing in his hometowns of Toronto and Boston has varied from dozens of Broadway Shows, to the Canada/Toronto/Hamilton Pops orchestra, to playing/recording/touring with artists such as Tom Jones, Brian Auger, Chuck Berry, Eric Burdon, T Lavitz, Mick Goodrick, Hiromi, Dionne Warwick, Chuck Berry, Marc Jordan, David Blamires, Michael Brecker, Livingston Taylor, and many, many others.
In the mid 1980's he opened his first studio, "My Studio", and engineered/produced countless sessions over a decade in every genre and medium.
During his time in Canada, he was nominated for a Juno Award for Best Contemporary Jazz Album, won 2 Canada Council for the Arts Awards for Composition, in addition to an Ontario Council for the Arts Award, and several nominations for the Toronto Music Awards.
In 1993, he signed to Arne Schwisberg's Jazz Inspiration label as a solo artist, and released two solo albums, the self -titled Michael Farquharson (nominated for a Juno in 1994), and the critically aclaimed The Arrival, released in 1997.
In 1996, Michael moved to Boston to take a prestigious position as Professor, Contemporary Writing and Production, at Berklee College of Music. He is very active in the Berklee community and regular travels around the world for the College. His travels have taken him to Korea, Brazil, Israel, Russian, Mexico, India, Turkey, England, Ireland, Spain, etc.
In addition to his teaching, Michael regularly records/writes/engineers/produces. Apart from being in demand as a player/engineer/producer for many Boston artists, he has released three albums in collaboration with his colleague/friend Matthew Nicholl - Journey to Inland (for Wayne Naus), Silent Picture, and Della by Moonlight. They have begun work on their 4th album.
His book, Writer, Producer, Engineer, published by the Berklee Press, has met with great critical acclaim.
When Michael is not busy with his music/teaching career, he holds an FAA Airline Transport Rating, and flies Corporate Jets for Linear Air, a charter airline service based at Hanscom Air Force Base in Boston.