The Paul Murfin Foundation For Young Drummers

A Tribute

Paul’s first drum was a yellow plastic one that he got for Christmas just before his second birthday. It was an instant success, and was followed up in the next few years by more sophisticated toy ones with skins, the last of which he kept all his life. By the time he was eight he was joining in the Newcastle Wind Band, while having lessons in the interval at the County Music School rehearsals and at nine he accompanied the County Youth Wind Band to Denmark, though he wasn’t allowed to do much more than pass things to the others! There was also a memorable trip to the Albert Hall – Paul is the tiny one.

p Albert Hall

                                                p2nd drum-1

Soon he was also playing in Wilson Hawkins’ band in Chell, with his brother Michael who plays the trumpet. Practise was never a problem and it was a long time before we discovered what was making the dents in his bedroom windowsill! He became a member of the National Youth Wind Band, moving up to become joint head of section, and was also voted Head Boy at Madeley High School.

After studying linguistics at University, he resisted the “9-5” and spent some time working with bands on cruise ships, which took him to Spain, USA, Mexico, Hawaii, Canada and Alaska. On coming back to Staffordshire he made music and drumming his focus. He played with ‘Hey Jude’, a Beatles tribute band, and with ‘This Is Seb Clarke’, performing with the latter at Guilfest and the Larmer Tree Festival. In 2007 he toured the USA with the ‘Elevator Band’, which included a gig at the South By South West Festival in Texas. It was the trip of a lifetime and Paul loved the freedom of the open road, playing music as he travelled. A live session for BBC Radio 2 in 2008 with ‘Loving Cup’ for Mark Lamarr also got him particularly excited.

l                       gorgeous pants
Paul also worked in many function bands including Smokescreen, Regroove and Boogie Knights. Alongside all of this he made recordings with original projects This Is Seb Clarke, Revolition, Greg Murray, and Captain Yange. Recently, he was putting all his creative energy into a project called Beeface.

Paul was a teacher across many schools in Staffordshire and with his own private practise at Rhythm House in Hanley taught students who have gone on to study drums at degree level in London, Guilford, Brighton and Manchester. At Denstone College his former pupils have renamed the percussion ensemble the ‘Murfin Percussion Ensemble’ as a tribute to an inspirational and very much missed teacher.

Settling in Oulton, Stone, with his partner Linden and her daughter Veyla, any spare time he had was spent in the great outdoors. He loved nature, walking, gardening, making fires and capturing it on the many photographs he took. He loved nothing more than a good adventure and he had many, from cycling down a volcano in Hawaii to climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

The many letters we received from friends and pupils past and present, and the stories we have heard of what his friendship had meant to people over the years touched us deeply. We hope that this Trust can help other young drummers on their way and that in this way it will be a fitting memorial to a much loved man.


Paul Murfin 2nd February 1973 – 22nd September 2011


‘I will always remember your illuminating smile. I know no matter what, a true light never goes out. You were an amazing person and an inspirational spirit’.

‘A truly wonderful drummer, teacher and true friend. We shall miss you dearly’.

‘A beautiful. talented gentleman. You will be missed’.

‘Paul was a precious, fun-loving guy of the highest integrity; always courteous and thoughtful, easy and interesting company. In the ten years we knew him we never heard him speak an unkind word about anyone; he found the best in people. Always up for fun of any kind, he laughed his way through life. We feel privileged and honored that our paths in life crossed and we treasure our memories’.

‘Paul was a great teacher and Henry looked forward to every Tuesday for his lesson with the man who did silly voices and made learning fun’.

‘He was a genuine. warm human being and he will be greatly missed’.

‘Thanks for your energy and enthusiasm. You will always be in our hearts’.

‘We’re so proud to have shared so many happy times, and always with a happy smile. You were one of the best’.

‘Never knew a nicer chap. Always happy and a joy to know’.

‘His tenacity remains with me, it is something I still aspire to’.

‘Never a bad word to be said, never a bad word said against you. You were a superstar drummer and a superstar person with a gentle heart of gold’.

‘A true gentleman, with a kind heart and warm smile’.

‘I have never met such a nice fellow as you. I admired how you lived your life to the full’.

‘You could find humour in anything, you could find the good in anyone. You taught me to laugh rather than worry. Our lives have been enriched and enlivened by your presence. Thanks for everything, you are a true one-off’.











One Thought on “A Tribute

  1. stuart moreland on September 4, 2014 at 8:12 pm said:

    i was lucky enough to gig with paul for a year or so whilst he was in Preston at university.
    to say he was a natural rhythm maker doesn’t do him justice, he could knock a tune out on absolutely anything that came to hand and a proper nice guy as well.
    although we lost touch some years ago i know he will be sorely missed by anyone who knew him.
    god must have one hell of a rhythm section now.
    so long mate

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