1952, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Matthews began his musical studies at age four, on piano. At age eight, he began trumpet study with the former first chair of the Philadelphia Orchestra. He began his organ studies at the age 12, and took his first church organist position at age 14.
Having received a Philadelphia Board of Education music scholarship, he did his undergraduate work in Church Music and Organ at Westminster Choir College, where he graduated magna cum laude and received both the Senior Class Conducting Award and the Christian Leadership Award. During this time, he represented the Princeton area college community at the annual Presidential Prayer Breakfast in Washington, DC.
Matthews received a Master of Music degree in Choral Conducting from Temple University. At the age 22, he was asked to conduct the Jerusalem Chamber Orchestra for a recording project in Tel Aviv, Israel. He also conducted the national tour of this project throughout major American cities the following year.
In 1976, at age 23, Matthews was invited to join the faculty of Nyack College in Nyack, New York as the Director of Choral Activities. In 1981, he received his Doctor of Musical Arts degree from Combs College of Music in Composition with an emphasis in Orchestral Conducting. Twice, he was the guest conductor at the annual performance of Messiah at the West Point Chapel, featuring a combined community chorus of 300 singers with professional orchestra.
In 1980, Matthews accepted the post of Organist-Music Director of Calvary Presbyterian Church in Willow Grove, Pennsylvania. In 2005, he accepted the call of Pastor of Worship Arts at Church of the Saviour in Wayne, Pennsylvania, where he was presiding as of 2008. From 1982–92, he was the Chair of the Department of Music at Philadelphia Biblical University (now Cairn University).
Since 1992, Matthews has been Professor of Music and Director of Music Programs at Eastern University. He is the Chair of the Fine and Performing Arts Division and Chair of the Music Department. In addition to his university and church posts, he conducts the Jubilate Deo Chorale and Orchestra of New Jersey, a 75-voice auditioned chorale and a 65-piece professional orchestra, performing sacred and classical choral and orchestral music. He is a commissioned and published composer, and is active in coaching, accompanying and chamber music.
Matthews was a Thomas F. Staley Foundation lecturer/artist, and serves on several professional and denominational boards and task forces. He performs regularly with his brother, Rev. Dr. Gary Matthews, in concerts and workshops throughout the United States and Canada. They have released six recordings of historic and contemporary church music.
Matthews holds Choir Master and Colleague certifications with the American Guild of Organists and completed a four-year faculty development grant for jazz study. He is listed in numerous international and national civic and professional Who’s Who publications.