About meHi Everyone, Well, its now a couple of years since I joined the band so here's an update of certain personal stuff......
As previously mentioned I started playing drums at about 15 years of age, probably after seeing Cozy Powell on Top of the Pops playing "Dance with the Devil", it sort of sticks out in my mind, but actually drifted away from the instrument for a while to take up guitar! An accident at work which damaged my fingertips put a stop to that one so it was back to 'tub thumping'.......and of course the late great Mr Powell actually joined my fav band at the time Rainbow so that probably reignited my interest in the instrument aswell !
I've actually played around the 'circuit' since my early 20's (HOW LONG?!!) with various bands, not all rock orientated though. A good band is a good band regardless of musical genre.
I have a very eclectic taste when it comes to music but my playing preferences will always be rock based. I think this derives from my love of bands with more stand out contributions from their respective drummers/percussionists like Rush and Dream Theater.
Having said that there's also nothing more enjoyable than just laying down a solid 'groove' as part of a rhythm section that a band can play off and I like to think that, along with a quality bass player like Mick, we do that more often than not, Although I do enjoy listening to people like Mike Portnoy, its not all about congesting a song with a monster fill at every opportunity and that probably sums up my playing style quite well actually.
As well as The Force, I'm also involved with a Scorpions tribute band Lovedrive along with Phil. We hope to put a few dates in the diary for 2014..... when The Force aren't busy of course.
InfluencesOn the drumming front,as mentioned, the first drummer that really caught my attention was Cozy Powell, but there really are only two guys who have made me sit up and say "that's seriously what i want to do"...... the legends that are Neil Peart and more latterly Mike Portnoy. There are other drummers who really impress like Mike Mangini, Deen Castronovo, Carter Beauford and technically superb players like Thomas Lang, but hey, i'm a huge Rush and Dream Theater fan, what more can i say?
More latterly I've been really impressed by Gavin Harrison , great feel in his playing and he makes weird time signatures still sound tasty.
Gear.Still playing my DW Collectors series, red silk onyx finish, with black hardware and still loving my kit immensely. It currently consists of:
Ludwig black beauty 14" x 5" snare
Istanbul Mehmet Radiant 12" hi hats
Sabian HH 21"rock ride
Istanbul traditional 18"china
Istanbul Alchemy pro 8" splash
Istanbul Mehmet Radiant 12"splash
Istanbul Mehmet Radiant 17" crash
Istanbul Mehmet Radiant 18" crash
Istanbul Alchemy 14" china
DW 9002 double kick pedal
DW and Yamaha hardware
Evans G2 clear heads
Evans reverse dot power centre snare head
EMAD kick head
Pro mark sticks
Gibraltar rack LP Granite temple blocks and various percussion as required including cow bell, tambourine, meinl chimes and even "egg shakers" !
About the band...Well. we've now been with the band two years as I write this and I can honestly say I've enjoyed every minute and long may it continue. But the band is really not just the four musicians. The team of people who dedicate their time to putting a gig together has always made me feel privileged since i joined . From Norm who sorts out the bookings to Kenno who gets the gear to gigs and lovingly looks after it like it was his own!!! To Clem and Trucka Phil who, along with Kenno sort out setting up and stripping down lights and gear, all top geezers worthy of way more than just a mention on my page!
As for the rest of the band they remain three of the finest musicians on the circuit, certainly that i've played alongside and not just up here regionally, but probably anywhere and I know that's not just my opinion! The rep of the band has been forged by other line ups long before my inclusion with outstanding players over the years from the drumming angle alone and hopefully we are still doing the biz live which is, after all where it really matters!