Geoff Muldaur (born August 12, 1943, Pelham, New York, United States) is an American musician and a founding member of the Jim Kweskin Jug Band of Cambridge, Massachusetts; a member of Paul Butterfield's Better Days; and an accomplished solo guitarist, ...
Geoff Muldaur (born August 12, 1943, Pelham, New York, United States) is an American musician and a founding member of the Jim Kweskin Jug Band of Cambridge, Massachusetts; a member of Paul Butterfield's Better Days; and an accomplished solo guitarist, singer, songwriter, composer, and arranger.
After establishing an impressive reputation with the Kweskin Jug Band during the 1960s, Geoff and then-wife, Maria Muldaur, recorded their first album, Pottery Pie, on Warner Bros. Records in 1969. It was on this album that Muldaur recorded his celebrated version of "Brazil" (original title "Aquarela do Brasil"), which became the title inspiration and the opening theme for Terry Gilliam's 1985 film Brazil. After recording Pottery Pie, the Muldaurs moved to the burgeoning folk, blues, and folk-rock scene in Woodstock, New York. They separated in 1972, shortly after Geoff joined Paul Butterfield's Better Days group.
After leaving the Butterfield band in 1976, Muldaur recorded two more solo albums for Warner Bros. Records, a duo album with Amos Garrett, a solo album on the Flying Fish Records label, and a jump band album, Geoff Muldaur and the Nite Lites, for Hannibal Records. During this period, Muldaur also recorded with Bobby Charles, Jerry Garcia, Eric Von Schmidt, Bonnie Raitt, and John Cale. In the early 1980s, Muldaur left the stage and recording studio for a working sabbatical. During this period, he composed scores for film and television, winning an Emmy Award, and produced albums for Lenny Pickett and the Borneo Horns and the Richard Greene String Quartet.
Muldaur emerged in 1998 with The Secret Handshake. After two more albums in 1999 and 2000, he recorded the semi-classical jazz album Private Astronomy, a Vision of the Music of Bix Beiderbecke on the Deutsche Grammophon label in 2003.
In 2009, Muldaur formed a roots supergroup for work on a new album. Dubbing themselves Geoff Muldaur and the Texas Sheiks, folk and American music luminary Stephen Bruton, Grammy-winning Dobro player Cindy Cashdollar, fiddle virtuoso Suzy Thompson, guitarist Johnny Nicholas, and bassist Bruce Hughes joined Muldaur in the studio for a pair of recording sessions in 2008. Bruton died in May 2009. Texas Sheiks was released on September 22, 2009, on Tradition & Moderne.
His sister is the actress Diana Muldaur. His daughters Jenni Muldaur and Clare are also musicians. His daughter Dardanella Slavin is a chiropractor.
Muldaur is the author of "Moles Moan", which was recorded by his friend Tom Rush. This song has been used as a theme song for many folk music radio programs, most notably by Gene Shay.