Richard Payne - bio/work history/education/awards/membership



Born 1950 in Los Angeles, 'Dick' started playing guitar in Fullerton, the home of Fender Guitars, at age 10. He began performing popular music at age twelve moving through folk, surf, rock, R&B, blues and soul bands.  He began writing songs for his group "Northern Sound" recording two singles in ’64 and ’65. Richard picked up double bass in high school and was soon playing sessions for singer-songwriter recordings.  His group "City Blues" played the area's first "be-in" with Jackson Browne in the summer of love.  He was negotiating a recording contract for his folk group "Ananda" while studying classical  guitar and jazz bass at Fullerton college when his pacifism led him to immigrate to Victoria, BC in 1970 as a classical guitar instructor.  

The first production credit in Canada was a choral ’45 for Queen Elizabeth’s 1971 visit.  His TVO series “Two Plus You” (1975) enjoyed 25 years syndication in Canada and the U.S. and  his “Holy Night” (1991) has become a seasonal standard in Japan. 

Composition credits include commissions for Tapestry Opera, the Banff Centre, the Belfry and Kaleidoscope theatre companies. Kazuhito Yamashita and Gary Karr.  Other performances include the Victoria Symphony, Vancouver Chamber Choir, Phoenix Chamber Choir, Michael Strutt, the Vancouver Guitar Quartet and other chamber ensembles.  Scores have also been written and produced for the CBC, NFB, TVO and independent filmmakers.

Consultant clients include the AFM, Victoria Symphony, University of Victoria's Arts Business course, TV Tokyo’s “Music Travel”, independent filmmakers and classical, jazz and blues artists.  On contract with Canadian Heritage, 144 concerts were booked across Canada for International Music Day in 2002 and 2003, and concert series have been booked for the Royal British Columbia Museum and the City of Victoria.  Richard has also been called on to adjudicate FACTOR, Genie and West Coast Music Awards.   

Recording frequently in Tokyo through the '90's, clients include AVEX, Chuo University, Tokyo Museum of Anthropology, SONY Beta Cam, Toyota, Yamaha Motors, Mitsubishi Corporate Communications and the City of Yokohama.  His studies of traditional Japanese court and theatre music under the auspices of the Canada Council for the Arts include a personal invitation to the Imperial Palace Music School by Tadamaro Ohno, Director of Tokyo Gakuso (Japanese Imperial Court Music), and often are reflected in his Pacific themed work.  After three years in commercial recording and performing in a roots rock trio, Richard returned to Victoria taking the stage as warm up for Eric Burdon and fronting his own group, Goat Blues.

Currently in Toronto, Richard offers instruction in composition, theory, song  writing, improvisation, arranging, history and guitar while continuing to compose for concert, stage and electronic media.

Work History

Composer/Lyricist/Publisher/Producer - Goat Music 1970-2018

Music Educator 1970-2018

Arcadia  Academy of Music 2005-2018 

Regent Park Music School - creative workshops 2005 

Open Space Arts Society - Sound for Theatre 1988

University of Victoria - Elementary Music Education 1986 

University of British Columbia - Film Music - assistant 1983 

University of British Columbia - Music Theory - assistant 1980-1981

United Church of Canada - Creative Workshops 1974 

Pogo's Picnic - Creative Workshops 1972 

Camosun College - Guitar 1970-1971

Supervisor, Electronic Media - Canadian Office of the American Federation of Musicians 2001-2004

Administration of CBC, NFB, TVO, Sound  Recording, Junos, National Aboriginal Achievement Awards, Canadian Country Music Awards, Genies and other electronic media agreements; working with Canadian Orchestras, CBC and independent producers to budget and contract musical services; sitting on negotiation committees; securing new use payments for musicians whose recorded performances are reused in new productions; establishing a national International Music Day concert series with Canadian Heritage and the  Music Performance Trust Fund; and musician advocacy on the Creators’ Copyright Coalition and Creators’ Rights Alliance.

Business Agent-Musicians Association of Victoria & the Islands (Local 247 AFM) 1993-1999

Working on the 1994 Commonwealth Games recording negotiation; researching the local industry; securing first time electronic media contracts for phonograph, cable TV and independent producers; creating venue listings and a referral system; booking concert series for the Royal British Columbia Museum and the City of Victoria: resolving disputes and increasing membership.


Composer - Tapestry New Opera Works Lib/Lab 2004

Master of Music, University of British Columbia 1982-1985
Resident Composer, Music Theatre Studio Ensemble, Banff Centre, School of Fine Arts 1981-1982

Bachelor of Music, University of British Columbia 1977-1981

Victoria Conservatory of Music-piano/violin/composition 1970-1971

Fullerton College, California - music major 1968-1969  


Millennium Practicing Artist - First Prize, Arts Council of Greater Victoria 2000 

Canada Council Explorations Award, “The Minotaur” 1989

Canada Council Arts Award, “The Portuguese Prince” 1985

Nora Black Prize for Lyricism in Art, UBC 1982

Banff Centre, School of Fine Arts Scholarship 1981

Jean Coulthard letter of commendation, Okanagan Music Festival, “Creation” 1972