OBITUARY: Timothy Gray, 1957 – 2021

GENIUS AT WORK Tim Gray at the helm during the 2018 Mad River Festival. KLH | Union

Timothy Gray passed from this world on Aril 10, 2021. “Timmy” was an amazing musician, composer, sound designer, recording artist, photographer and friend.  

His life was full of great music, excellent adventures, and collaborations that lifted and brought together our community time and time again.

He was born on July 16, 1957 in Indianapolis, Indiana.  He attended Catholic grade school in Indianapolis. By all accounts, he was terrified of the nuns. 

One day the head nun, called over the loudspeaker that “Timothy Gray was to report to the office immediately.” 

Fearing the worst, he ran there only to find out that he had won the paper airplane contest sponsored by Scientific American for having the most aerodynamic paper plane.

When he was young his parents gave him a guitar for Christmas. He went into his room with it and didn’t come out until he could play it… well.

Timmy moved back to Humboldt in 1982. According to HSU legendary teacher Charlie Moon, Timmy had a “golden ear.” 

He founded Myrtletown Records and was a phenomenal recording engineer and producer. 

The bands that Timmy played with were legion, but among the notable were Barking Dogma, The Joyce Hough Band, Home Cookin, Bayou Swami’s and the Road Masters. 

He worked with Dell’ Arte and the Arcata Playhouse as composer, sound design artist and musical director.

Timmy passed of a rare brain disease and donated his brain for research.  

An important thing in Timmy’s vision, was that if his own demise was studied and better understood, it could benefit others. It was another example of Timmy  “spreading the love.”

Memorials are taking place 6 to 10 p.m. on Friday, July 9 at the Arcata Playhouse, and Saturday, July 17 at Dell’Arte where a marker for Timmy will be put in the Dell’Arte Memorial Garden.

Donations for the Timmy Gray Artist Fund can be made at or by mail to Arcata Playhouse 1251 Ninth St., Arcata, CA 95521 ATTN: Tim Gray.


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