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William Henley-Dias

Lives & works in Oakland, CA


     I grew up in the LA area and began working in music during high school as a drummer, guitarist and bassist for several indie bands. Two of these bands received placements on TV shows such as "Parenthood" and "Shameless." At that point a self-taught musician with experience but no formal training I started a music degree in Santa Cruz, CA. 

     I quickly became fascinated with music theory, and in my final year was hired as the sole tutor of the music department's year-long interdisciplinary theory course, primarily working with students on ear-training skills. I graduated with honors and studied classical guitar with Christopher Mallet and William Coulter but also performed in jazz ensembles directed by Stan Poplin and Karlton Hester.

     In my second year I became interested in learning jazz piano and began studying outside of school where my primary instrument had to remain classical guitar. At the time I had a weekly residency playing bass with a jazz trio and when our piano player moved away, I decided to take the opportunity to throw myself in the deep end, reforming the group with new players and taking over the piano. Playing a live show every week for two years forced me to continue learning rapidly and since then, piano has become my primary instrument.

     I began seriously composing and producing music in my third year, and since then I have written and released three albums. I scored and performed live music for a feature length play, created a film soundtrack, wrote and performed music for three contemporary dance shows, arranged pieces for full orchestra and composed the soundtrack for a museum exhibit (details on musical works page).

     In addition to performing, composing and producing, I have been teaching music lessons for 5+ years, emphasizing musicianship and an accessible understanding of theory for both classically trained and self-taught musicians. 



2014-2018 University of California at Santa Cruz

  -  Bachelor of Arts in Music Theory,          Composition and Classical Guitar          with honors

  -  Minor in Education​

Work Experience in Music

Keyboardist - Asari

Producer - Vooo

Bass/Keyboardist - Frequency Collective

Keyboardist - Beat Tape

Guest Producer/Keyboard - Sleepy House

Keyboardist - Slinky Thing

Bassist/Guitarist - Alaska Reid

Drummer - Forty Feet Tall

Today's Future Sound

Beatmaking Instructor

2019 - Present

Freelance music composition and production

(2017 - present)

I.R. Guitar Lessons

Guitar/Bass/Ukelele Teacher

2020 - Present

Topanga Mountain School

Music Teacher

Fall Quarter 2018

UCSC Music Department

Lead Peer Advisor and Office Assistant

2017 - 2018

Learning Support Services, UCSC

Learning Assistant for Music 30A, B, C


Indexical - Experimental Music Organization

Intern/Audio Tech


Private music teacher for bass, guitar, drums and keyboard

(2016 - present)

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