I was just 11 years old when I first picked up a Tuba. It was an important moment because at last, I found something for which I had an aptitude. Back in 1973, I had no idea it would lead to a lifetime of camaraderie, travelling the world and performing with some of the World's Best Brass Bands. Music became my life and Orchestral music, in particular, became the great love of my life. Although I was a self-taught player, I was lucky enough to win a place at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, studying Tuba with James Anderson and John Fletcher, and Composition with Buxton Orr. It is only in recent years that I have returned to composing and Brass was my logical medium.
I have been lucky enough to develop a working relationship with the Rothwell Temperance Band and their brilliant conductor, Dave Roberts. I have composed a number of pieces for the band including Rhapsody on Shenandoah, Battle Suite and my large scale work, Fragments (variations on themes by Liszt). I have recorded a couple of pieces with the Band, Concerto for Alto Trombone and Brass Band featuring the amazing Simon Cowen, and Vivaldissimo, my own take on Vivaldi's Concerto for two violins in A minor. Hopefully, both pieces will be released soon and I look forward to linking to them here.
I have also composed music for Brass Chamber ensembles. My Fanfare for Brass Quintet was performed at the opening of the Tate Gallery, Colchester and I have recently completed a Brass Quintet in three movements. Also completed for 10 piece Brass are, Partita, Three Miniatures for Ten and Celtic Suite. All of my brass chamber music will be for sale here.
I'm currently working on a new piece for Brass Band called Beluga Fuga, an upbeat arrangement of a very famous fugue and a new "Tone Poem" called Dulcius Ex Asperis. I'm very much looking forward to hearing them and I hope to publish them for digital download from this site in the future.
My biggest project to date is my first Symphony, Nation. Based upon the novel, Nation, by Terry Pratchett, it follows the action in the story. I believe (as did the author) that Nation is his best book and the story lends itself to a musical treatment. In five movements, the work lasts for an hour and ten minutes and is, I believe, the longest piece ever written for a brass band.
Please check back and share my journey, as I strive to get my Symphony #1 recorded and (maybe) performed. The pandemic has obviously affected my ability to approach bands but I hope to be able to do this in the future.