Mike Dawson heard Ray Charles in Detroit’s Fisher Theatre when he was seven years old and his piano lessons were fueled by 1960’s Motown and Vietnam era rock. In 1974 Dawson’s family relocated to New Mexico where he picked up the electric guitar, and starting writing his own tunes. He played his first gigs with Tejano bands, Navajo musicians, and sheriff deputies. In 1985 Dawson earned his classical piano performance degree, studying with Julliard graduate Thomas Uchtmann, composer Robert Kehrberg, jazz legend Dan Haerle , and guitarist Steve Erquiaga. He played synthesizer and piano for the Mitch Paliga jazz group Sidestep winning Third place in the 1985 American Collegiate College Showcase (college version of the Star Search TV show). Soon afterwards Dawson earned his electronics engineering degree and worked in Texas, Malaysia, and Singapore. Always writing and performing music, an exhausted Dawson quit his engineering job and formed his 12 piece rock n’ roll big band Dawson’s New Rage. He ultimately produced six original music CD’s between 1999 and 2009 for New Rage. He has never looked back since his plunge back into the music life full time.
His latest music collaborations, Dawson & Lazo – The Hive Sessions and Dawson & Lazo features Texas singer/songwriter/composer Lisa Lazo. He also produces Texas World Music concerts that present music, arts, and science education events. In 2009 Dawson formed his new group Still Flame and performs music from his eight album releases. He considers “Dawson & Lazo” the best music he has written, produced, and performed.
In 2011 Dawson started his new media products company Assignment Universe to produce multi-media films and broadcasts inspired by Carl Sagan and the space program. Indeed, his new band Still Flame reflects a lifelong passion of fusing arts and sciences to inspire and educate humankind.