I was born and still live in Swindon, and I am 19 years old.
I took up drumming when I was nine, and have been taught ever since by acclaimed Swindon drummer Paul Ashman.
At Kingsdown School I performed in many recital evenings and Christmas concerts, was a member of the school's Jazz Band and represented the school in the final of the Swindon Young Musician of the Year competition. I didn't win, but the adjudicator said of my performance: "Plenty of rhythmic interest here, with the complete rhythm exciting and under control. A definite sense of a driving rhythm and nicely synchronized with the backing track - especially calculating the gaps. Buddy Rich and Jon Hiseman watch out!"
However, I did win both the Junior Young Musician of the Year (in Year 9) and the overall Young Musician of the Year (in Year 11) title at my school - the first time a drummer has ever won the award. Before leaving school, I passed my Grade 8 Drum Kit exam 'with merit'.
In the meantime I took up guitar and played both drums and guitar as a student of Swindon Music Service's highly successful Rock School programme.
After leaving school I became a student at New College, Swindon, where I took and passed A-levels in English, Business Studies and Music Technology, which taught me such skills as sequencing, arranging, recording, mixing and session drumming.
During my A-level studies I progressed from being a student at Rock School to become an junior mentor, and I am now a senior mentor. I have helped with the implementation and roll-out of the service's innovative RockPod system, and since October 2010 I have been an approved teacher with the local authority (more details here).
I have also been involved with a number of after-school Rock School programmes at various primary and secondary schools under the control of Swindon Borough Council; have begun tutoring my own one-to-one drum students; provided relief tutoring for various Swindon teachers, including renowned drummer Andy Wraight; and have taught beginners' guitar classes in primary schools.
I have made several guest appearances as a drummer in musicals at Peatmoor School and Churchfields Secondary School and in October 2010 was invited to join a band as drummer at a gala performance for teachers in the Swindon Music Co-operative.*
Aside from my drumming, I play guitar in a punk band called The Cold Harbour who have played numerous gigs in Swindon and beyond, including a successful tour of Poland and Germany in the summer of 2010 and a tour of Belgium and Germany in March 2011. We will be touring Germany, Sweden and Austria in April 2012.
In December 2010, I passed a performance diploma (DipRSL) with Rockschool Ltd which, is equivalent to a first year Degree. My performance included a wide range of styles, from the jazz of Dave Weckl to the rock of Nirvana.
Music continues to be my main interest, and as well as teaching and playing across the whole range of styles from jazz to rock, salsa to reggae and more, I am a keen listener. My tastes range from jazz drumming by greats such as Buddy Rich and Dave Weckl to music by The Beatles, The Beach Boys and modern bands such as Muse.
*I am keen to take part in other productions in the Swindon area in order to gain more experience, so please contact me if you require a drummer for your show!