I have shared the stage with legendary artists such asYngwie Malmsteen, Guthrie Govan, Saxon, Rage, Blind Gaurdian, John Parr, Love/Hate and Riot amongst many others during my career.
I have been fortunate enough to spend time with and learn from the great Shawn Lane (Powers Of Ten) , Shaun Baxter (Jazz Metal) and Yngwie Malmsteen.
I started playing at the age of 11 on a 2nd hand guitar from a pawn shop thinking I was useless- later to find out the guitar was broken and couldn’t be played. I didn’t know that, as I was trying to teach myself from various books that didn’t explain things well.
I struggled on for 2 years– finally deciding to take a few lessons from a schoolfriend’s brother’s guitarist who had just attended the Guitar Institute in America (he was taught by guitar heroes Paul Gilbert, Frank Gambale and Scott Henderson).
This really showed me how to practice and gave me the obsession/love I still have to this day.
I practiced for 8-10 hrs a day from the ages of 14-22 yrs old and landed my first pro gig at 16, moving to Stuttgart, Germany with recording artist Jackie Wulfe.
A great experience giving me the lust for more.
I returned to the UK and started teaching– at age 16 . Guys would knock on the door for their lesson and ask if my Dad was in for their guitar lesson, only to find out it was me, be very surprised then leave after their lesson with all they asked for.
My 1st original band XLR8R (accelerator) had a cult following in Newcastle and received fantastic reviews in Kerrang and Metal Hammer magazines for our first demo The Ultimate Sensation .
At this time I was offered an audition with Germany’s 2nd biggest rock act Zed Yago (later to be renamed Velvet Viper) recording the latter's 1st RCA release in 1990 to critical acclaim– sponsorships with Ibanez and Lag guitars and Laney amplification followed. Demonstrating these lines at the world renowned Franfurt Music Fair.
I then joined folk/metal Massacre records artists Skyclad as a session guitarist for various tours worldwide.
Currently a member of North East roots/rock legends The Caffreys, finalists in the recent UK’s Best Part Time Band- a BBC2, BBC4 and BBC Music TV programme, hosted by comedian Rhod Ghilbert, broadcast to millions.
I have taught thousands of students in Schools, Colleges and Universities as well as delivering Guitar Masterclasses throughout Europe. Ages have ranged from 5 yrs-75 yrs from all levels/musical tastes.
Having worked for the Academy of Music and Sound delivering high end theoretical/technical syllabus for Jazz rock legend Shaun Baxter, as well as lecturing at Gateshead College and Middlesbrough College and Wolverhampton University and many schools i have encountered every type of learner and this system really works- as long as you practice you will achieve your individual goal.
“…I think the most important thing to learn about any instrument, is the basics of music. Learn your ABC's before you write a Hemingway novel.”
— Yngwie Malmsteen