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Tom Farley Bio
 
Songwriter - Musician - Teacher - Professor - Producer - Audio Engineer
Podcast and Audiobook Host and Producer - Education Ad
ministrator
Education Advisor - Software Developer - Web Designer - Radio Station Owner and Manager
Graphics and Video Creator - Businessman

 
Tom Farley collage

Thomas R. (Tom) Farley is a lifelong resident of Southeast Virginia....married to Tania Farley since 1976. He was a teacher for Chesapeake Public Schools from 1973-2004, and an Adjunct Professor, Administrator and Advisor at Virginia Wesleyan University from 1986-2014. His Bachelor’s Degree (BA) is from Virginia Tech with a major in English and minors in History, Theater, and Education; his Masters in Education (MSEd) degree is from Old Dominion University (1990).

 

Music and Music Business Career


On the musical side, he was the owner of Alum Ridge Music (1982-2005) and Farley Music Services (2015 to the present)...both music publication, licensing, and audio service companies. As a local music artist, he has performed (publicly from 1975-2016) as a solo artist and with several successful musical groups including 

The Herndon-Edwards Band;

Cimarron;

The Tom Farley-Cam Head Band,

The Tom Farley Band, and

The High Energy Acoustics Band

 

He has written, performed, engineered, co-engineered, mastered, published, and produced the following popular recordings:

"Songsmyth" Album (1982)

"The Calm Before the Storm" Album (1991),

"Songsmyth and the Basement Cuts" Album (2001),

"Over the Falls" Album (2006),

"High Energy Acoustics - The Tom Farley Collection" (2007),

"By the Fence in the Sun" Album (2016)

"The Calm Before the Storm: Remastered Silver Anniversary Edition" Album (2016),

"Tom Farley - The Instrumentals" Collection (2016),

The single "Free Me" (2017),

The single "About the Giving" (2017),

"Songsmyth Album - Remastered" (2017),

"Over the Falls Album - Remastered" (2017),

The single "Ten and Fourteen" (2017),

"The High Energy Acoustics Band: First Take - Live at Steel Pier Cafe" Album (2017),

"Tom Farley - Solos and Duets in the Studio" Collection (2019),

"Tom Farley - Fingers and Strings" Collection (2019),

"Tom Farley - Reflections" Collection (2019),

"Renaissance Man" Album (2019),

The single "Our Better Angels" (2021),

The single "Devil's Dream - Traditional" (2021),

"This is the Place" Album (2023),

"The Barry Sessions" Collection (2023)

 

and special "Musician Showcase" compilations for the following artists (2018):

"Musician Showcase: Tania Farley"

"Musician Showcase: Steve Gallagher"

"Musician Showcase: Donnie Satterwhite"

"Musician Showcase: Greg Wikle"

"Musician Showcase: The Herndon Edwards Band"

"Musician Showcase: Cam Head"

"Musician Showcase: Peter Shonerd"

...all of which can be fully previewed for free through the Farley Music Services web site and/or downloaded and/or streamed via Amazon, You Tube, Napster (Rhapsody), Spotify, Tidal, SoundCloud, Apple, CD Baby, ReverbNation, YouTube Music, and other global download and streaming sites. 

A collection of over 220 original studio montage and live performance videos can be viewed on the Tom Farley YouTube Channel.

He garnered two Hampton Roads Music Awards from Port Folio Magazine.  He was the first ever to win the Best Acoustic Musician Award (1983) and followed that with the Best Rhythm Guitarist Award (1985) .

 

Tom and his bands have opened for a variety of groups including Poco, Firefall, and Bruce Hornsby and the Range.

In 2019, Tom and Alton Riddick began SEVA Sound: a company dedicated to the development and marketing of music products and services from Southeast Virginia...beginning with multi-Instrumental Loop Collections and Rights Managed Standard and Enhanced Music Licensing.  With an ever-present objective of monetizing the creative and original talents of and for the many artists from Southeast Virginia, SEVA Sound strives to develop a collection of artists and published works that will represent and showcase the sound of Southeast Virginia: "Our Home...Our Sound...SEVA Sound."

From November 2019 to January 2022, Tom and Alton expanded their music business with the founding of RADIO SEVA - an internet radio station dedicated to the broadcasting of the Independent Recording Artists in Southeast Virginia...making the region and the world more aware of the diversity and quality of the songs, performances, and production found in the area.  With dozens of SEVA recording artists on the air 24/7/365, RADIO SEVA expanded into providing music business information and links, artist profiles, artist videos and podcast and audiobook episodes (SEVACAST), and, actively engaged in the daily promotion via social media of the recorded music and recording artists of Southeast Virginia.  Without the use of paid advertising and live DJs, RADIO SEVA provided 55 minutes of original music every hour...allowing each artist to have a minimum of 4-6 plays every day. 

 

RADIO SEVA went off the air on January 6, 2022.

 

Tom was a finalist twice in the annual awards competition sponsored by ISSA: The International Singer-Songwriters Association:  

2019

Male Songwriter of the Year

Video of the Year - Free Me

Mixing and Sound Engineer of the Year (Finalist)

2024

Male Best Songwriter of the Year

Male Best Single of the Year

Male Best Vocalist of the Year

Male Video of the Year (Finalist)

Best Podcast - "The Path Taken" (Finalist)

Best Sound Engineer (Finalist)

In July, 2019, Tom and Greg Wikle won the "Best Song Collaboration" Award from The World Songwriting Awards for the acoustic multi-instrumental recording "Better with Age".

In 2021 Tom opened a new (albeit brief) relationship with Malcolm Campbell and Silent Voices International Radio...gaining airplay recognition.  From this spark came the concepts for the episodes of the podcast and audiobook series "The Path Taken (A Musician's Story)" ...produced and hosted by Tom Farley and Alton Riddick...featuring the stories, the songs and special moments from Tom's fifty-years in music, production, collaborations, engineering and education...through conversations, stories, and sessions with the friends and colleagues that have both influenced and collaborated with Tom in the studio and on stage.  And...most importantly...their reflections on their career in music both before and after the "intersection" of the paths they have taken as individuals.  This podcast and audiobook series is hosted and produced by Tom Farley and Alton Riddick.

Education and Educational Technology Career

 

His 30 years of public school teaching were all in the Chesapeake Public Schools system.  He taught Honors World History, World History, U.S. History, Honors U.S. History, AP U.S. History,  English 10 and 11, Creative Writing, and Current Issues at Indian River Junior High (1975-1991), Indian River High School (1973-1974; 1991-1996), and Hickory High School (1996-2004).  He was the first Social Studies Department Chair at Hickory High School, won Teacher of the Year at IRJHS (1988), and DAR History Teacher of the Year (2003). 

Always a believer and proponent of educational technology for the classroom, he has been a facilitator (with Gary Miller and Annie Gilstrap) for several summer GeoTech Technology Workshops sponsored by Microsoft, National Geographic, Virginia Geographic Alliance, Old Dominion University and WHRO Public Television. He has been published in the Virginia Geographer, Odyssey of the Mind, Who's Who Among American Teachers, and has had numerous newspaper articles covering his teaching and musical career.

 

The Special Education internet software - "EasyIEP" - (currently owned by PCG, Inc.) - was developed and built by Soft Pubs, Inc...a company created and staffed by Tom and his brother, Willard W. Farley, Jr.  It is the top special education internet database software being used in the United States today.

He expanded his education resume and experience as a professor, advisor and administrator at Virginia Wesleyan University for over 28 years (1986-2014),  He is the retired Director of the Adult Studies Program (2009-2014)  and Program Development Coordinator K-12 (2005-2014).  He is also a retired VWU Adjunct Professor, teaching evening classes for over 24 years.  His courses were Physical Geography, Cultural Geography, and Human Geography (GEOG 111, 112 and 113), Secondary Education (Social Studies) Methods (EDUC 375), and Technology for Teaching (EDUC 301) - courses designed, developed, and taught by Tom at Virginia Wesleyan University.  In the area of public school teacher support, Tom, Nancy Winter-Traynor, and Dr. Shirley Hart developed the VWU National Board Certified Teachers Support Center - advancing the public awareness and teacher-based support for National Board Certification candidates in Southeast Virginia.

 

In the area of business, he is the former President of Soft Pubs Incorporated - makers of Educational and IEP Internet Database software.   The flagship of the Soft Pubs' line was Easy IEP®, an internet database for compiling, manipulating, and querying Special Education IEPs and their data.  It is currently being sold by PCG, Inc. and is the top selling special education internet  software in the country. It is currently being utilized by school systems and districts nationwide....including Charlotte-Mecklenburg, Boston, Newark, Houston, Danville, Broward County, The District of Columbia, Illinois Cooperatives and Districts, Minneapolis, Dallas, Springfield, the State of Tennessee, Philadelphia, Chicago, and hundreds of city, county, and independent school districts in 30+ states across the nation.  One in every five IEPs in the United States are created and managed using EasyIEP .

 

As co-founder and former President of Soft Pubs, Inc., he has been responsible for contributing to the design, help section development, and training development for all Soft Pubs’ products including Easy IEP, Laser Director, The Student Assistant for U.S. History, and The U.S. History Primary Source Documents Collection.  

 

Credits and Collaborations

The most collaborative independent recording artist in Southeast Virginia...with 48 (to date) musicians, vocalists, and engineers...combining their variety of instruments, styles, vocal harmonies, and creative muses into Tom's songs...in Studio Sessions and Live Performances...creating the most numerous multi-genre, multi-generational collection of recordings, songs, and performances in Southeast Virginia.

To be there for every performance...to participate in all...to record and mix the tracks.  All I need to do is listen...the memories take me where I've been....where I want to go...inspiring the many recording sessions yet to come.

History of Collaborations 2023
Tom Farley playing dobro
Tom Farley vwu advisor
Tom Farley playing lap steel guitar
Tom Farley picture collage
Tom Farley Easy IEP Software
AP U.S. History primary document collection
Laser Director software
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