￼I am a multi-instrumentalist and singer best know for my mandolin playing. I regularly perform on the folk scene with my band Gadarene, at Ceilidhs and social dances and I perform classical mandolin as well.Gadarene: Combines old English tunes with funky dance beats to make a sophisticated and danceable sound. Click on this text to go to our website.Ceilidh: Playing for dance is one of my absolute favourite things, I cut my teeth as a dance musician with the amazing melodeonist Ed Rennie in A New Vintage and have often played with the Dartmoor Pixie Band. Since then I went on to form the Bristol Ceilidh Quartet and I regularly play for ceilidhs in various groups.Social Dance/Contra: I’ve played a lot for contra and social dance in various groups but have started specialising in playing solo on fiddle and mandolin.
There are a very small number of people playing Classical mandolin in the UK. I particularly enjoy playing music from the two great flourishings of the mandolin, the first in the mid eighteenth century and the second in the late nineteenth. When looking at music that wasn’t specifically written for the mandolin I have a love of Baroque music, much of which fits well on the instrument. I have performed solo recitals and orchestral classics such as the Vivaldi Double Mandolin Concerto and Mahler No8.I have also give an illustrated talk entitled “The Two Golden Ages of the Mandolin”, most recently at the Teignmouth Classical Music Festival.
Workshops: I started my musical career as a trainee community musician at Wren Music where I learned to run workshops to their high standards, since then I have run many hundreds of workshops. I regularly run workshops in singing, mandolin playing and Dartmoor stepdance working with participants of all ages. I work hard to make everyone feel at ease in a relaxed atmosphere while achieving great resuts from the participants. I have previously worked at Halsway Manor, Knuston Hall, Benslow Music and Sidmouth and Purbeck Folk Festivals.Choirs: I run the Bristol Folk Singers and the Bath Folk Singers, open access community choirs singing English folk songs, Click on their names for links.Private lessons: I teach mandolin to any standard in both classical and folk music.
I specialised in composition at University gaining a first for most of my second and third year pieces. Since then I have composed pieces for choir, folk groups, mandolin orchestra, string ensembles and songs for children. I had a commission performed at the Loughborough Folk festival and most recently had a work for mandolin orchestra performed at the BMG Rally in Bristol and the Sidmouth Folk Festival.I have made arrangements of existing pieces for many ensembles including choir, brass band, string ensemble and scratch band. I have a particular specialism in arranging for mandolin orchestra and for arranging traditional English music for amateur choirs. I have published two books of my choral arrangements which can be bought in the online shop.I currently conduct the Bristol Folk Singers and the Bath Folk Singers. I have previously lead the Mandolin Orchestra of Devon and the Bristol Folk String Orchestra.