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The Muffins


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(1973 – 1981, 1998 – present)

Almost entirely instrumental, the Muffins’ music is a unique blend of Canterbury progressive, fusion, improvisation and much more. The group was formed in the Washington, DC area in 1973 by Dave Newhouse (keyboards), Billy Swan (vocals, bass and guitar), Tom Scott (woodwinds) and Michael Zentner (guitar and violin). Stuart Abramowitz played drums from August 1975 until July 1976. This group recorded the home and studio demo recordings heard on the Chronometers CD.

Zentner and Abramowitz left in July 1976. Drummer Paul Sears joined the next month, setting the stage for the group’s most popular period. The group released Manna/Mirage in 1978, and soon after released a limited-edition, live LP called Air Fiction. The band also worked with Fred Frith on his solo LP, Gravity. Frith produced the band’s next LP, <185>, in late 1980. The Muffins disbanded six months later in 1981. In the early ’90s, the band played at a private party, resulting in “Hobart Got Burned” on the Unsettled Scores compilation (Cuneiform,1995), and it wasn’t until July 16, 1998, that group came together again — this time for a reunion show in Washington, D.C. This reunion lasted, leading to a number of concerts by the Muffins over the next several years. Tom Scott, Paul Sears, Billy Swan and Dave Newhouse also hit the studios in 2001, resulting in first Loveletter #1 (2001) and then Bandwidth (2002). The band has continued to record and play shows and festivals. Double Negative, featuring a wide array of guests (inculding members of Sun Ra’s Arkestra), was released in 2004.


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  • Enkuturi

    Good band!

    23 Feb 2014 Reply
  • twenytwo

    hey i used to be top listener :(

    30 Mar 2013 Reply
  • esophagus79


    10 Jul 2010 Reply
  • miss-boner

    I'm going out now with the drummer's daughter. Her dad used to be in the band. They sound pretty good.

    14 Jan 2010 Reply
  • imaginarypetbat

    Truly Excellent! I had no idea. Colour me one lucky bastard.

    25 Apr 2009 Reply
  • Nymphedark

    Any link with Martha and the Muffins?

    19 Dec 2008 Reply
  • tz0d

    The Muffins are a fantastic group with a butt-ton of character. One of my favorite groups, I highly recommend all of their work. Manna/Mirage is one of my top 3 favorite albums.

    6 Mar 2008 Reply
  • Recycleation

    Wait wut?

    9 Sep 2007 Reply

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