‘Community Music’ means different things to different people, and to me it lives in a few different areas of my life that I’m really passionate about. As well as writing, recording and performing under my own name and with Cat Bear Tree I am a freelance community musician. I facilitate music workshops, work with music therapeutically and as a music mentor, with all ages of people, in different settings in London and the South East of England.
I believe that music should be something that absolutely everyone has the opportunity to take part in. Although I respect musicianswho work hard to master their instrument to a high level, music can be played and enjoyed with little skill, and often the most powerful experience is making a simple piece of music together in a group. I believe that music education is best delivered in a student-centred and interactive way.
Current and previous projects
I currently work as a freelance music leader for:
Leading young people’s music charity Rhythmix
East London’s long-established music activity and education provider CM Sounds
Adult live performance workshop JamSocial
I am a Singing For Health facilitator. I am currently working for Sidney De Haan Centre, Canterbury Christchurch University as part of a year-long research programme into the benefits of singing on mental health and respiratory conditions.
I am also a Musician in Hospital – I use music to create connections and improve wellbeing in acute healthcare settings with both young children and people with dementia. Take a look into this work on the Wishing Well Music In Healthcare website.
Some other recent projects I’ve worked on include:
– Female/LGBTQ-focused new band festival First Timers
– Vocal leading The InnChoir, over 60s singing group St John’s Singers and Morden Respiratory Service Singing Group.
– Arts Award-accredited music workshops for young offenders
with Summer Arts Colleges
– Music and theatre outreach with young people for world-renowned opera company Glyndebourne Young Voices
– YouthMusic-funded and highly praised band and music production project Brighton Music Hub
– Hertfordshire community dance, drama and music organisation Herts Showtime Dancers
– A collaborative project between The Wellcome Trust and University of Sussex, facilitating creativity with young women using songwriting and sexology research, culminating in a performance at The Roundhouse.
– As Sound It Out I gained funding from the London Community Foundation to design and deliver a free music project in Brixton, South London in Summer 2014. The project brought together young people to learn about beatboxing, music production and band instruments, make music together and perform at a community concert.
I facilitate music workshops for people of all ages, abilities and from many different backgrounds and needs.I work with voice, band instruments, percussion, found sounds and music technology to facilitate group participation and positive outcomes through music making.
I engage in regular professional development training, and as well as studying a Level 4 PTLLS qualification at The Institute of Contemporary Music Performance I hold a Certificate in Workshop Skills (Music) course from Goldsmiths University, London.
Stop Look Listen
For many years I have been involved in hosting music events. I ran Listen Acoustic Night on the south coast for 2 years, which saw some amazing national and international acts play.
This became Stop Look Listen when I moved to London, and for the past 4 years Will and I have been booking, organising, promoting and hosting this monthly music night, with which we have built around us a community of musicians, represented and championed through our online presence and word of mouth.
As well as running on the first Tuesday of the month at The Finsbury in North London, we immensely enjoy holding live music events on the bandstand of our local park Myatt’s Fields in South London.
I love what I do, whether it’s writing songs alone at home, performing with other musicians, helping young musicians develop the wealth of transferable skills in learning and playing music, whilst expressing themselves creatively – it’s a pretty varied and enjoyable existence.
Please do get in touch if you’d like to discuss a community arts project, musical collaboration or anything similar.