My music interests began when I was about 10 years old. My parents let me stay up to watch the Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1964 and I was hooked. I was given my first guitar in 1967 and have been playing and singing ever since, 56 years. In those early days I was self taught and joined in many music activities with other guitar-playing friends.
My first band was formed before I started high school in 1969. Our band was based in Petawawa, Ontario where I grew up on the military base. Music was a big part of my high school years from 1969 to 1973 when I graduated from Grade 13. I became quite comfortable playing in front of attentive audiences in school variety shows.
In the mid 1970s, I co-founded a professional rock band and played at various venues in the Ottawa Valley. We covered many of the top artists of the day including the Eagles, Doobie Brothers, and Elton John for example. In the late 1970s I also played with a country band when I lived in Northern Alberta.
I moved to Nova Scotia in 1979 to return to university to become a physicist. In the mid 1980s I took classical piano lessons for a few years in order to understand music theory and to write my own guitar compositions with a firm music foundation. I performed two annual recitals at the Dalhousie Arts Centre as an adult student playing pieces by Bach and Beethoven.
After a science career of almost 30 years, I retired in 2012 and began to perform at open mic venues around the Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM), meeting many musicians who continue to be my friends today. I also took euphonium lessons at the Maritime Conservatory of Performing Arts in Halifax. I had to stop playing this instrument after my heart attack due to a reduced breathing capacity.
One of my most satisfying volunteer activities was performing at fundraisers for the Children's Wish Foundation, now Make-A-Wish Canada's Nova Scotia branch. From busking on the Halifax Waterfront to performing at various special events for children with life-threatening illnesses and their families, I made myself available whenever asked.
At the beginning of the pandemic we moved from HRM to a small farm in Kempt Shore, NS. During the pandemic years I had lots of time to create unique acoustic solo arrangements for guitar and voice, an interest of mine since retirement. Live music performances had come to an end for most artists, who fell back to online sessions. I did a few of these but not having high speed internet in much of rural Nova Scotia was a big obstacle.
In 2022 and the spring of 2023 I founded the Meadowview Farm Music Series and hosted 16 concerts to fundraise for the Centre Burlington Community Hall in Centre Burlington, West Hants. These concerts did not go unnoticed by a former President of the Windsor Agricultural Society (WAS), and I soon became the Chair of the Hants County Exhibition's Music Committee. The Exhibition is the oldest in North America and owned and run by the WAS.
The majority of music I play is classic rock from the 1960s & 70s. Each cover has been carefully arranged for an acoustic guitar solo with voice, transposed if necessary. Many of these arrangements are complex combinations of guitar, keyboard, and bass from the original tracks, melded together into my unique style.
Examples include "Suite: Judy Blue Eyes" by Crosby, Stills & Nash (1970), "Green-Eyed Lady" by Sugarloaf (1970), "Come And Go Blues" by The Allman Brothers Band (1973), "Night By Night" by Steely Dan (1974), "Baker Street" by Gerry Rafferty (1978), "My Life" by Billy Joel (1978), and "Michelle" by The Beatles (1965).
Early influences on my music interests were Cat Stevens, The Beatles, Stevie Wonder, & The Hollies. I play many of their great hits. But, over the years I have widened my performance genres to include country, soul, pop, folk, jazz, and traditional covers. I even have a few cool children's songs that I play including a unique rock version of "Wheels On The Bus", complete with an original chorus!
As a songwriter, I perform original tunes as well. My songs are based on my life experiences and fall into several genres. With well over four hours of songs, there is something for just about everyone.