About My Music (click)


I am a dyslexic musician. Like a person who can read only one letter at a time and struggles to see whole words, I can only read music one note at a time. All my life I envied pianists who could instantly read a complex page of notation in two clefs while I fiddled away on my violin one note at a time.

I also had a real problem with breaking the rules. The few music teachers I had were always chiding me for lack of discipline. Because I was so slow reading the notes I would make things up and improvise. I was also not gifted with that special agiliity of finger movement that every good performer possesses. It took me years to realise that I was not a performer or an arranger, but a composer. In fact I had been a composer since a small child, but I was incredibly shy about it and would endlessly hum and harmonise and whistle little tunes to myself whenever I was alone. At six years of age I got my hands on a ukelele and was transported to heaven. I quickly worked out the chords and would spend hours playing and making up little songs - like the one below, Whistling down the Lane. I never really learned music. How do you learn what you already know? I always felt it. But because I was all at sea with musical score and was baffled by the rigid rules of composition all my ideas and melodies were locked inside my head until the computer age and the invention of midi and sampled software. I was like a bird released from a cage. A torrent of ideas and sound tumbled out and continues to do so.

I am aware of my limitations and hesitate to share my music in the public domain, but some of my muso friends have encouraged my to 'come out' and let others enjoy my work. I hope you enjoy the end result . . and if you do, keep coming back as I add more pieces to the collection. I present you with my first album, Songs for Sally.

Piece for Mandolin and Organ: There is not much music written for the mandolin these days, yet it is an attractive and delicate instrument. This composition matches it with flute and organ as backing music for a short video I shot in Bulgaria in 2017
March of the Elephants: In 2018 I was fortunate to visit Sri Lanka where I had the opportunity to view elephants, firstly in an orphanage, and then in the wild. I ended up with some excellent video and composed this music to accompany the short video.
My Home: I am greatly blessed to live in one of the most beautiful places in the world. This simple piece for violin, cello and piano reminds me of my college days when I played my violin with old friends (Viv Hill) and Lyell Heise (Piano). I composed it for this short video.
Pastorale: Sadly, in the busyness of city living we rarely find time to enjoy the soothing balm of the country.  Likewise we live in a world where pastoral care is hard to find. For me, this short piece captures some of the essence of inner peace in the Pastorale.
New Beginning: A light hearted piece for flute and chamber strings - one of my favourite combinations. I would probably describe this as 'chirpy'. I wrote it for a short video I created on the beautiful Lake District of Cumbria
A Bit o' Bounce: I love the shape of music. This little piece is full of bounce and zig-zags, rising and falling intersecting patterns. A fun musical ditty.
Song for Sally: The inspiration for this song came from the countless times Sally and I have walked hand in hand on the shores of Sydney's beautiful Pittwater. A simple love duet of the peace and harmony of enduring love. My favourite - both the song and Sally.
Isolation: This idea for this song came as a result of standing on an isolated beach. The sounds of the waves and gulls blend with the harmonica and flute to create a haunting melody. Leaving the beach I walked into the isolation of the bush with the different background sounds of bellbirds.
Old Nerac: The old medieval town of Nerac of Lot and Garonne in the South of France is one of the most beautiful towns in the country. This music was written for a short movie I added to my memories. It has a real baroque feel using the harpsicord and recorder.
Tauranga Waltz: The most prominent feature of the town of Tauranga in New Zealand's South Island is an impressive mountain. After reading the Maori legend of how it was dragged from the mountains to the coast I was inspired to write for a movie in this rather haunting piece in a waltz tempo
Maui: The Island of Mau, Hawaii is a ruggedly beautiful place of amazing contrast and beauty combining rugged beauty and an ever-chaning coastline. I wrote this song for a short movie - it mixed and matched very well.
A Piece for Bassoon and Oboe. This is one of my early attempts at something more classical. I love the threesome of the bassoon, oboe and English horn, so I enjoyed the opportunity to create my own piece for them.
Two's Better: When I first met my son's true love, who is now his wife, I immediately knew that she was the one for him and that two is definitely better than one. I just had to write something to celebrate. I later found out that she was a fine musician who played the bassoon. I was already one step ahead, complete with a cheeky little rendition of "I'm a little teapot" secreted in the first movement. My first composition after twelve years of having no time to compose. It provided the perfect backing for a movie of the vineyards of Lavaux in Switzerland.

Whistling Down the Lane: It doesn't get much simpler than this. Audio recording of my ukelele and my favourite and most portable instrument, whistling. As for the bass - just hum it and drop it down an octave.

Ocean Wave: We are blessed to live near the ocean. There is something very inspiring about waves. They have a music all of thier own. Great place for contemplation and meditation.
Deep South: There is something very beautiful and peaceful about the South Coast of New South Wales. Every time I drive through this region I find myself inspired to write music. This is a short ballad for flute and harmonica.
Geneva Rose: With a few hours to kill in Geneva, Switzerland we strolled around the beautiful lake and relaxed. A short movie and this piece of music is the memory of that beautiful day.
Long Chai Nai: I have no idea what "long chai nai" means. It was a little Chinese ditty I used to hear when I was a small child growing up in Asia. I figured it was time to bring it back to life and use it to back up an Asian flavoured (literally) movie.
Lion Song: I wrote this while visiting Singapore, the Lion City. It is a complex city with a mixture of East and West, never stopping and eternally on the move. The result is lots of modern synthesised sound with a baroque feel of the recorder. Busy and different.
My Old Car: What can you say. Nearly twenty years of 'on the road again' and far in excess of 300,00km. It deserves its own song. Like me, mature but never misses a beat.
Heritage: Sailing through the fiords of New Zealand made me aware of my heritage for this was the land where my father was born. We have no say in our heritage but it is in the very fibre of who we are.
Dawning: Being a night owl I tend to really appreciate the dawn when I manage to experience it. This little piece captures the beginning of the day with a flute and saxaphone duet. It is dedicated to a dear friend and my flute teacher, Christine Moro.

Biscuits: One of my first pieces, this simple rag with a jazzy rock feel is one of my favourites. My brother really liked it when he heard it and promptly christened it with its crunchy name.
Rockitty: A fun song with a real handclap beat as the guitar switches between the muted sound and something a bit more twangy.
Requiem: When my father's brother passed away the family asked me if I would compose a piece for his funeral. For much of his life he grieved the loss of his only son who died at six years of age. Later in his senior years he lost the love of his life when his wife died. He was incredibly musical and we had a special bond. The song reflects the agony and discord of those two periods where the harmonies struggle to meet. Eventually he is at peace as the soothing melody of his his favourite hymn (Dear Lord and Father of Mankind) is played as he is laid to rest. Composing and sharing this was a powerful and moving experience for me. It all happened in 24 hours without sleep.