I’ve been living in Sussex now for over twenty years and love life on the south coast. There is such a wealth of great music in this part of the world, we are very lucky! I started out in Doncaster, South Yorkshire - a town with a very rich heritage of music making. Strangely enough though, I never got into the Brass Band scene which dominates the musical landscape of Yorkshire.
Instead I was lucky enough to be taught by Carey Williams, a formidable character on the music circuit in Doncaster, and he gave me countless opportunities to perform in and around the town. I also had the privilege of playing with the world renowned Doncaster Jazz Orchestra under the leadership of John Ellis OBE. I didn’t realise at the time that this kind of music was going to become the majority of my playing in later life. Throughout my school days I was very fortunate to have trumpet lessons from Rita James, formally Principal Trumpet at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden.
In the early ‘90’s I was lucky enough to be given a place at the world renowned Royal Northern College of Music and had the privilege of being taught by Martin Winter, to whom I am enormously grateful for all the time and effort it must have taken from him to get me through! On graduating from the RNCM I was awarded the coveted PPRNCM diploma; a Professional Performance Diploma awarded to only a handful of players leaving the college each year. I had many great opportunities whilst at the RNCM including playing with BBC Philharmonic, the Halle Orchestra, The Kings Consort, the BBC Big Band and Jools Holland to name but a few.
I also got to play alongside dozens of great names as the Lead Trumpet in the college Big Band including Wynton Marsalis, Allen Vizzutti, Bobby Shew, Don Rader, Gerard Presencer, Guy Barker, Steve Sidwell, Victor Mendoza, Mark Nightingale, Toshiko Akioshi, Stan Sulzmann, Julian Arguelles and John Dankworth. I have also had the pleasure of meeting three more giants of the trumpet world - Maynard Ferguson, Arturo Sandoval and Dizzy Gillespie!
I now work as a freelance trumpet player in the south east and enjoy every minute of it! I am a regular player in The Conchord Big Band, The Pit Band All Star Big Band, Harvey’s Brass - a 10 piece brass ensemble sponsored by Harvey’s Brewery.
I recently played on the number one album ‘Ballads’ by Lianne Caroll and also the number one single ‘Abracadabra’ by Joe Stillgoe. I was also seen on the NTA Awards playing with the late Sir Bruce Forsyth live from the O2.