Born and brought up in West London. (Stones throw
from Alexis Korners Ealing Club, birthplace of Rolling
Stones. Lived opposite Pete Townshend but never knew
First guitar: cheap steel-string acoustic,
Xmas 1965, age 16. (Struggled to build guitars out of scrap
before this. Also experimented with sound recording on tape.)
First band: jug band, bunch of
schoolfriends, summer 1965. I played washtub bass.
First gig: October 1966, folk club floor
spot (3 tunes, unpaid). Three of us, all on guitars (including
me, strumming simple chords).
First full band gig: November 1966 (me on
bass). (Lots of folk club and party gigs with this group over
next 2 years. One or two actually paid!) I occasionally
doubled on banjo, mandolin and washboard with this group, as
well as guitar. Acquired piano in 1967 and taught myself that
First electric guitar: 2nd hand Hofner
Verithin semi-acoustic, 1969. First amp, about a year later!
A British Baldwin Burns 2x12 combo I had to get home on the
First rock band gig: 1972, party in
Wimbledon. Epiphany! People danced! I discovered what music
was for, and the course of my life was set...
1973-1975: Acoustic lead guitar with folk
group playing mix of comedy numbers, originals and Django
Reinhardt tunes. (First introduction to serious jazz
fortunately we didnt take it too seriously.) Many gigs,
some as far as Manchester. (Still a spare time occupation: I
was a BBC clerk 9-5. Our violinist and later clarinet player
were pros, though.)
1976-1981: Electric lead with jump jive
band, Dangerous Rhythm.
High point of career: 1979, self-financed
EP played on BBC radio several times, voted 7th best single
by DJs for one week. All downhill from there...
1979-82: Studied Illustration at Art
College. Used library for music theory research. Graduated
with BA 1st (honours); distinction for thesis on British Punk
(1983-2002: main career: illustrator, cartoonist,
1981-1984: Lead guitar with 60s-style
beat group (college band).
1975-2000: Lead guitar with rock-soul
covers band. Various pro jazz musicians guested on
horns, keys or drums. Gigs, but no recordings. I did the horn
arrangements. We also played some of my original tunes.
1988: First jazz summer school (1 week).
Later, enrolled on weekly jazz workshop for first time.
Guitar to begin with, but moved to electric bass soon (too
many guitarists!). (Continued for most years till 2004.)
1992-2000: Lead guitar with Chicago-style
blues band (my favourite genre). Great female vocalist.
Keyboard player was ex-Dexys Midnight Runners. No
success though. Badly managed (by me!)
1980s-present: Lead guitar, mandolin,
keys and backing vox with covers band Stiff Joints (blues,
folk-rock, rocknroll, originals)
1990s-present: various jazz groups,
mostly on electric bass.
1999-present: Bass with Soul Operators,
function band: 60s and 70s soul covers. Weddings, parties.
2003: Certificate in Music Teaching to
Adults (part-time, Goldsmiths University).
2003-present: Teaching guitar: adults at
evening class, kids at school; privately too.
2004-present: bass and guitar in Latin
covers functions band.
2007: Associate Trinity College
Licentiate Diploma in Jazz performance.