Arthur Maia started his musical studies playing drums, when he was still a child. When he was 15 years old, he received a bass as a gift and, influenced by his uncle Luizão Maia, a Brazilian bass player, began to practice it. Then, years later, in 1976, he became a professional bass player, playing with many famous Brazilian artists, such as Ivan Lins, Luiz Melodia and Márcio Montarroyos.
In 1985, he joined the band Cama de Gato, a Brazilian jazz group formed by Rique Pantoja (piano), Pascoal Meirelles (drums), Mário Senise (saxophone) and Maia (bass). With it, he recorded five albums. Although Maia is not a member of this band anymore, he was a special guest in Cama de Gato's sixth album. He also joined many other instrumental music bands, such as Pulsar, Banda Black Rio and Egotrip; their songs were much played on Brazilian radio in the 1980s.
In 1986, Maia also recorded an album dedicated to Tom Jobim and Heitor Villa-Lobos with Gilson Peranzzetta: Tom & Villa. During his career, Maia developed his own style of playing bass, mastering bass techniques and mixing several rhythms. It made him a famous bassist and many artists invited him for recording.
In Brazil, he played with Jorge Benjor, Gal Costa, Lulu Santos, Caetano Veloso, Roberto Carlos, Martinho da Vila, Djavan, Milton Nascimento, Marisa Monte, Fernanda Froes, Leila Pinheiro e César Camargo Mariano; abroad, with Ernie Watts, Sheila E., Pat Metheny, Carlos Santana, George Benson, Paquito de Rivera e Plácido Domingo. Maia has also played in many festivals around the world, such as Free Jazz Festival, Heineken Concerts, Paris Jazz Festival, Montreaux Jazz Festival etc.
In 1990, Maia recorded his first solo album, which won the Prêmio Sharp award one year later. In 1996, he recorded his second album, which was very well received by critics, and in 2002 recorded Planeta música, with the participation of many famous musicians, such as Dennis Chambers and Mike Stern. In 2005, Maia organized a tribute to his uncle, who died that year. That show happened in Mistura Fina Pub, Rio de Janeiro, with participation of the Brazilian singer Leny Andrade.
In the past few years, Arthur Maia dedicated his time to projects as a musical producer, recording opening songs for 4 soap operas and for the TV show Pé na Cova; which was broadcasted on TV Globo between 2013 and 2016. Maia has just recorded his new DVD and now prepares for a World Tour in 2018.
His most recent album, 'O Tempo e a Musica', was Grammy nominated, making Maia the only Brazilian bass player to be nominated for the best instrumental album.