Dartanyan L. Brown


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Audio Artist - Sound Designer - Jazz Educator

Music and Technology in the classroom and onstage since 1984

• Iowa Rock 'n Roll Hall of Fame 2010 - Jazz Hall of Fame 2007 - Blues Hall of Fame 2003

• Workshops and Curriculum Development - Interdisciplinary, arts-directed, fun stuff for all

• Sound Design for live performance - meditative or motivational


My career, has been multidimensional. A burning desire to be a newspaper reporter led me to a job as a cub reporter (let's be honest, a coffee boy really) in the sports department of the Des Moines Register.

Lucky for me Bill Bryson Sr. and a lot of other world-class writers were already there providing me with a world class laboratory. A chance to learn from some of the best writers and editors to ever put facts to paper. Research, interview skills, research, tight writing, research, triple sources and I did mention research?

I learned the skills of a beat reporter, covered state house debates, wrote concert reviews including Alice Cooper and Journey and learned the editing skills that seem to elude many in the newsroom today.

I come from a musical family. My dad, Ellsworth Brown provided jam sessions in the house and Mom played Rhumba and Bach and tried to turn my brothers and me into a three-voice choir. I grew up with music but didn't participate with my heart until 1967.

I had to make a choice between writing about musicians and becoming one in the 70's when I joined Chase, a grammy-nominated Jazz-Rock band led by trumpet star Bill Chase. The time spent on the road doing shows with Herbie Hancock, Sly Stone, Jim Croce, Maynard Ferguson, and the artists of that period gave me a sense of how important great music is for our culture.

Another big Aha!: The impact of digital instruments on the creative process began in earnest in the late 70's and I credit my work with the CHASE band and keyboardist Wally Yohn and his arp 2600 in 1973 as my introduction to microprocessor-driven music.


When the Macintosh showed up in 1984, it brought a whole new facet to my work. It was obvious from my point of view, how important the Mac and its elegantly designed, well thought out user interface would create a new paradigm for classroom experimentation. It dovetailed so well with the jazz education crusade that I was already pursuing, it was as if a second stage rocket had just ignited sending me, my students and our projects soaring.

From 1984 until 1999, I worked variously for the National Endowment for the Arts, Apple Computer inc, Arts councils and school systems around the United States demonstrating that project-oriented learning which integrated the arts and technology could make all the difference in creating an effective atmosphere for learning. In well-appointed private institutions and poorly funded, dysfunctional schools, all students we encountered were able to find a space for their mind to play, for their imagination to create, to make mistakes and learn. I carry gigabytes of data attesting to what we have witnessed over the years.

I've been fortunate to work with America's two most significant cultural gifts - Jazz music and personal computing technology

1. The spirit of improvisation within structure drives both disciplines

2. Both disciplines are a kind of alternative code that requires rigorous study of previous masters with proof of learning demonstrated in realtime.

I had no idea that I would become a high school teacher in 1993 but a desire to keep my own kids on track led me to becoming a computer lab geek for my sons' school and then in 1995 I became the Director of Technology for my daughter's neat little school. It was during those days I discovered the beauty in finding the truth with young minds on a daily basis. I've been at it ever since.

Ok, that ends the narrative portion of this CV. I'll probably keep modifying whenever more stuff happens. West Coast Stuff Below.

Thanks for coming over here to check out my pages and perhaps to contact me for an assignment. And now the rest of the story.....


Dartanyan began his California years in 1987 with Teja Bell, an Iowa-born guitarist and producer of uncommon talent who, along with violinist Steven Kindler, produced Dolphin Smiles, an album that created a commercial stir in the New Age world. Life long friends, Bell and Brown worked with jazz flute legend Paul Horn and recorded the album History of My Heart with synthesizer and sound design pioneer Susanne Ciani.

Throughout his career, Dartanyan has recorded and/or performed with an incredible variety of musicians, dancers, performance artists and purveyors of new media. The list includes trumpeter Bill Chase, Attila Zoller, Suru Ekeh, Grover Washington, Jr., Mark Levine, Kenny Barron, Horace Arnold, Mike Vax, Larry Ridley, Clark Terry, Dick Oatts, Warren Gale, Alvin Batiste, Kent Jordan, Arnie Lawrence, Barry Finnerty, Frank Foster and many others.

He is finishing production on a set of live concert recordings by Ron Dewitte, Big Mike Edwards, Jaimeo Brown, Sam Salomone, Craig Horner and Don Brown under the nameplate, The Iowa Blues All-Stars.

He has collaborated with California Poet Laureate Al Young


Dartanyan performed in San Francisco's legendary Digital Be-In gatherings of the early 90's. He performed and composed with Tribe'r, MIDI-wired dancers. Also appearing were Timothy Leary and Todd Rundgren


1984 University of Montana Dance Team at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Dartanyan's evocative electronic music score was an integral part of an athletically beautiful performance choreographed by Mark and Ella Magruder.


In the world of Dance, Dartanyan and Marcia performed with internationally acclaimed dancer/choreograper Bill T. Jones

Dartanyan has provided compelling accompaniment to California's Poets Laureate Al Young and Quincy Troupe He produced concerts featuring poet David Meltzer and drummer Joe Chambers

1998 Slam Poetry with Bamuthi and Saul Williams. Word!

In 1996 Dartanyan's sound design talents come to the attention of CD-ROM/New media publishers Broderbund/Living Books. They, in league with Random House, Living Books and producer Mark Schlicting, bring Theodore Geisel's Dr. Seuss franchise to the new media arena. Dartanyan's whimsical sound creations can be heard on the best-selling CD Dr. Seuss's ABC, one of the most popular early learning media creations ever sold.

In addition to his performing career, Dartanyan has provided guidance to hundreds of educators on how to integrate Jazz studies and music technology into the K-12 educational sphere. In the civic arena, Dartanyan has spoken before the San Rafael, CA. Chamber of Commerce educating the business community on the advantages of Jazz music and its place in the educational and professional arenas. He continues to blend the arts, education and entreprenurial spirit into a new paradigm for how, when and why we educate our children to their responsibilities to the community they inhabit.

 Dartanyan holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communications and News Editorial Journalism (1975) from Drake University. While there he studied the fundamentals of the bass violin with the esteemed cellist John Ehrlich. Dartanyan studied in New York with the legendary Richard Davis. Ron Carter is another primary influence. Jaco Pastorius was a personal friend and confidant during Jaco's time with Wayne Cochran's C.C.Riders in 1972.

He is currently a embemr of the San Francisco chapter of the Recording Academy. He established Mayorisha Music publishing as an independent outlet for his growing catalog of audio art, lectures, and interviews.

Highlights of Dartanyan’s professional career include the following:

2018 - Cultural Ambassador, CultureAll Des Moines

2013 - Present - Music and Curriculum development Des Moines Public Schools

2010 - Inducted Iowa Rock 'n Roll Hall of Fame

2007 - Established Mayorisha Music Publishing and RadioDartanyan, original audio content.

2003 - 2012 - Music Faculty, Marin Academy

2003 - Inducted into the Iowa Blues Hall of Fame

2002 - Development Database Administrator & Music Teacher, Brandeis Hillel Day School

1995 - 2002 - Director of Technology and Jazz Educator, The Branson School

1993 - 1998 Audio Technology Specialist & Sound Designer

1994-1998 Apple Partners-In-Education SoundRanger San Francisco, CA.

1997 Sound Designer, LivingBooks-Random House, San Francisco, CA

1991-1993 Staff Writer, investigative reporter MacWEEK newsweekly

1990 Western region User relations and Tech support; CE Software

1988-89 Studio album with Suzanne Ciani Collaborations with Theodor Holm Nelson

1986-87 Engineer, Sound designer, producer Audio Art Studios, Des Moines, Iowa

1979-80 Music video performance with Grammy winner Rickie Lee Jones. Chuck E's in Love and Youngblood

1979 - 1985 Visiting Artist (with Marcia Miget), Jazz Artists In Schools (JAIS), National Endowment for the Arts

Residency sites: University of Montana, Iowa Arts Council, Montana Arts Council, American Dance Festival and public school programs in Louisiana, Arizona, Iowa, Wisconsin, Nebraska, and Arizona.

1973-74 Recorded and toured as Bassist, lead singer and writer with Epic Records.

1967-70 and 1974-75 Reporter, Photographer, Reviewer: The Des Moines Register and Tribune

Procedural debate Iowa Senate1974 legislative session.
Jerry Szumski R&T statehouse and gen. assignment reporter

References provided upon request

For more information: email Mr. Brown at: dartanyan@dartanyan.com or call: 415.806.1625


2723 Columbia St.

Des Moines, IA 50313

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