Directing Music in Mere Green

September 8, 2017

I’m very grateful to the Rector and congregation of St James’ Chuch, Hill for allowing me to come into their church community and cover the vacant post of Director of Music for a while. We had a choir practice last night and I’m playing for my first Sunday service this weekend. There’s a wonderful pipe organ, a baby grand piano, choir and all sorts going on in what is a very busy parish. Read the rest of this entry »

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New Game, UKGE, catching up and half an idea

June 17, 2017

Were I even halfway concerned about my audience (rather than this entire blog being largely a vanity exercise) I would open with a meaningful apology for my recent absence. The only issue with such an opening gambit is that I’m really not sorry at all. I’ve been rather busy. However, I have few things to share with you. Read the rest of this entry »


Why Hell is no place for a Country singer

January 27, 2017

Many years ago I caught a snippet of something on Radio 4 which included a sketch about how difficult it is for Hell to hold a Country singer. The gist of it was as follows: Hell is the summation of all the pain and damage one human being can do to another, everything a person can do to hurt themselves and the fears and failings of the human race heaped into a big pile and dealt out in chunks to the unfortunate souls who are consigned there for eternity. An on top of that the inhabitants are physically mocked and tortured for the general amusement of the demons in charge. Read the rest of this entry »


2017 in review

January 15, 2017

It’s only a couple of weeks old, so it’s probably harsh to try reviewing 2017 already, but I know there are a couple of things coming up I wanted to muse on, so here goes.

[tl:dr Reflections on stuff that’s coming up, a couple of name drops and a quick delve through recent events. Normal service continues sometime soonish.] Read the rest of this entry »


Love Your Neighbour in Walsall

September 3, 2016

I’m playing a gig in a couple of weeks in Walsall Town Centre. It’s only a short appearance on a stage I’m happy to share with a whole host of local performers, speakers and dignitaries. Love Your Neighbour is an initiative started in Birmingham and spreading across the country.

It would be great to see a whole crowd of people supporting their local community.

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Why should the Presbyterians have all the good music?

January 24, 2016

It’s been a while since I wrote about Christian music, but something this morning really made me pause and think.

Horatio Spafford is known for a few things, principally as a chum of great evangelist Dwight Moody and the writer of “It is well with my Soul” – a hymn inspired by the tragic loss of his four daughters in a shipwreck when crossing the Atlantic to holiday in England. The hymn, published by Sankey to a tune by Philip Bliss, is a standard in traditional protestant Christian churches, an inspiring message that whatever the world throws at a person God’s love and grace are sufficient to meet the challenge. It’s a hymn strong on key Christian themes, and recognised and sung across the English-speaking world.

Which is why I’m rather disappointed that Matt Redman nicked the chorus to shore up one of his recent compositions. Read the rest of this entry »


Chip off the old block

December 12, 2015

This evening the Doorknobs played another charitable gig in aid of the Aldridge Church Centre building fund, and St James’ Church Mere Green.

My role in these affairs is basically to sit at the back of the band on piano, fulfilling the time-honoured position of chord monkey (assistant chord monkey if a guitarist is present) and filling in with blistering improvisation if there are gaps to fill. Read the rest of this entry »