In his own words…
I am one of the army of thousands of unknown entertainers who manage to make a living out of making music. Basically, I am a Guitar/Vocalist. From an early age all I ever wanted to do was sing. My musical knowledge is basic. I learned to read music in school playing in the school brass band. When I left school I very quickly, literally swapped my cornet for a guitar. Having taught myself to play, I went through the growing and learning process with folk, rock & roll, pop, country and finally songs from the shows.
In 1987 I had my first summer season in Jersey and did 10 seasons there. the first 3 seasons were working in a hotel lounge for seven nights a week, and a Sunday lunch time! To stay fresh I increased my repertoire, of about 2 hours music in total, to performing 8 different 2.25 hour programmes. To challenge myself, and to stay fresh, I was always encouraging my audiences to ask for requests. This meant I had to start learning songs from the London shows. One evening whilst singing, ‘The Music of the night’ with only the guitar for accompaniment, I decided I needed a keyboard. That opened up a whole new extra dimension for my music. With my rather limited musicianship, I was delighted to discover the ‘interactive keyboard’.
By 1999 I had had enough of being away from home for around 6 months of the year and decided to stay home.
Looking back on my good fortune at having been able to earn a living doing something I love, for the best part of 30 yrs., I felt compelled to try to give thanks to God for my good fortune. I have always been aware of my limitations and amazed that I was able to survive for so long. In particular, I am so grateful for my God-given voice. I have never had any vocal training but people were always remarking on my vocal range and the quality of my voice. Some nights I would listen to my voice and wonder at the sound I was producing, and with such little effort. (It’s a strange thing but I love what I hear live but hate what I hear in the studio!)
Whilst doing a weekly stint entertaining in a holiday hotel for the disabled near Ross-on-Wye in Herefordshire, and chatting to the guests, I met a lot of sad and lonely people. With the media so obsessed with the negative side of life and bombarding us with noise, death and destuction, and the ever pervasive mixture of fast living and ‘must have’ commercialism, I started getting requests for more religious songs. It was then that the idea for a CD of quiet contemplative music camt to me.
It has taken the best part of 6 years to find the right material, (which had to be aimed at pleasing all of the people some of the time), then work out and play the arrangements, and get it to the final stage of going in to a studio.
Press and PR
‘LISTEN’ – 15 tracks of contemplative Christian Music.
‘Listen’ is a fascinating and unusual CD containing a contemplative mix of music, songs, hymns (most of them fairly familiar), and prose. It offers the listener the opportunity to switch off the world for a while and, in an atmosphere of calm to open the mind and soul to restful, spiritual thoughts.
The opening track contains original material. ‘Beginning’ is based on Jim’s thoughts about time using Genesis 1:(1-4) and John 1:(1-5) as inspiration. The music was composed and performed by Jim.
Jim makes no claims as to the therapeutic power of the CD, but would suggest that the first ‘listening’ should be planned so as to listen to the whole programme without interruption. if you manage to do this you will either be calm and relaxed at the end, or fast asleep! Either way, you win.
The final track is ‘Spread Love all Over the World’. This is the only lively track on the CD (just in case you need awakening!). This also has music composed by Jim, with lyrics written by him based on the thoughts and sayings of Mother Teresa of Calcutta.
All profits from the sale of the Cd’s will go to a Third world charity as suggested by the Little Way Association.