Biography

My goal is not to become the best player I can, but instead to become the most useful musician I can.

I come from a long line of Salvation Army members and musicians, and proudly continue that heritage; currently holding the position of Bandmaster (conductor) of the Wellington South Salvation Army Band. I am a 6th generation Salvation Army musician.

I first started learning a brass instrument at the age of 4. I met with my Granddad M once a week for tuition on the Cornet.

At the age of 6 or 7 I was shown the positions on the trombone slide and how certain positions were the same as certain valve combinations. I then spent the next while teaching myself to play trombone.

As a child I would sit next to my Granddad H, who played G Bass Trombone in the Oamaru Salvation Army Band. His G Trombone is now a proud part of my instrument collection. At that time I wasn’t old enough to join the senior band myself, but instead played in the Junior band.

When I did join the senior band at the Oamaru Salvation Army Citadel my Granddad moved from G bass trombone to tenor trombone to assist me as I did my best to play the 2nd trombone part. At that time I was playing on a unknown age Blessing Artist/Scholastic straight Bb tenor trombone.

I’ve had a number of tutors throughout the years; Gordon B taught me for a period of time, Paul C took me through a couple of Royal School’s of Music exams when I was around 10-12 years old, and later Tim S taught me for a year.

As part of my drive to be the most useful musician I can be I have played a number of different instruments in different groups:

  • Oamaru Citadel Salvation Army Band:
    • 2nd Trombone
    • 1st Trombone
  • Oamaru Garrison Band
    • Tenor Trombone
    • Bass Trombone
    • Repiano Cornet
    • Flugelhorn
  • Waitaki Boys’ High School Jazz Band
    • Lead Trumpet
  • Combined High School’s Concert Band
    • Trombone
    • Bass Trombone
  • Oamaru Youth Orchestra
    • Trombone
    • Briefly played percussion for one concert (woo)
  • National Secondary School’s Brass Band
    • 2nd Euphonium
    • Bass Trombone
  • Salvation Army National Youth Development Band
    • 1st Trombone
    • Bass Trombone
  • Salvation Army National Youth Band
    • 2nd Euphonium
    • Principal Euphonium
    • Principal Trombone
    • Bass Trombone
    • Soprano Cornet
  • Salvation Army Wellington South Band
    • Principal Trombone
    • Principal Euphonium
    • Principal Cornet
    • Deputy Bandmaster (whilst playing Principal Cornet)
    • Bandmaster
  • Hutt City Brass
    • Principal Euphonium (for about 6 months until work schedule forced me to leave the band for a few years)
    • Floating trombone (1st, 2nd, or bass as needs required)
    • Bb Tuba
    • 2nd Baritone
    • 2nd Euphonium

In addition to being a member of the above bands, I have also played in the orchestra pit at a number of musicals, playing cornet, trumpet, trombone, and bass trombone.