October 1st, 2017 by Steve Morl

Artiste – Visiting us 23rd October 2017 Rod Pooley

 

Rod Pooley was born in Welling, Kent, in 1966.  He began playing electronic organ at the age of seven. At the time he received early tuition from John Norris (Then the Principal of the Southern Music Training Centre Bromley). Rod added the piano to his playing skills from the age of ten. His then tutor was London jazz pianist, James Fagg, maybe the reason why Rod is now a fluent jazz player.

Rod attended Chislehurst and Sidcup Grammar School. The school at that time had one of the largest school music departments in the UK. Whilst there Rod can claim that he performed a solo during a concert in front of former prime minister Sir Edward Heath the then Mp for Bexley.

At the Grammar School Rod formed its first jazz band. During and after leaving full time education, Rod won many titles in the organ world. These included:

1981 at 14 years of age Young Theatre Organist of the Year

1985 and 1986 at 18 and 19 years of age National Organist of the year

1988 at 21 years of age Yamaha Electone Festival Winner

Rod has Grade VIII on Piano and Organ and achieved a performance diploma in electronic organ playing at just 17.

Rod was the Church organist at St Michaels and All Angels Eastbourne for two years. His professional career was established by the time he left school, performing at many organ societies. He has performed in many forms of entertainment as both soloist and a member playing in big bands. Rod has worked with the Joe Loss Orchestra, the Ken Mackintosh Big Band, Mike Reid and Jimmy Tarbuck.

Rod organised and ran a successful organ and keyboard school; he now combines his busy performing and demonstrating career with a directorship of The Drawtones his Funky Organ Classics band.

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September 1st, 2017 by Steve Morl

Artiste – 25th September 2017 Alex Payler

Alex’s performance instrument is the state of the art YAMAHA Electone Stagea ELS-02C. As well as being the first pro-player to import this very special instrument into the UK, he is now one of the leading exponents of this particular model in the world. The state of the art Stagea ELS-02C is at the apex of technological innovation and along with its cutting-edge design, is by far the most musically expressive electronic instrument created in the world today.  Check out Alex’s YouTube Channel for special live performances…

https://www.youtube.com/alexpayler

Acknowledgement to http://www.organfax.co.uk/players/alexpayler/#close

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August 1st, 2017 by Steve Morl

Artiste – visiting us 21th August 2017 – David Harrild

 

First lessons
At the age of 9, his parents bought him his first organ which was a Bontempi from Woolworth’s, unfortunately his persistent practising on the Bontempi stretched his parents tolerance until they could stand no more, so he was given the option of attending lessons and a new organ.

Throw Away The Books
After 1 year’s tuition, he decided that he would throw away the teaching books and play by ear. At least that way, he could progress to more exciting material other than “Merrily We Roll Along”.

Through the years
Through the years David was inspired by  his idol, Harry Stoneham, this encouraged him to form his Trio that consisted of  Drums, Tenor Sax and Organ. The Trio become familiar  faces  with local  Working Men’s Clubs, Bowls Clubs and then on to Masonic Ladies Festivals, Social Evenings and Dinner Dances.

Ability to play by ear
Many of you who have heard David in concert will know that he never carries music with him. David’s concerts are performed by his ability to play by ear. This ability enables him to choose his material, listen to it once or twice and then play it. David is now known around the country for performing at Music Festivals, Dinner Dance, Masonic Functions, Organ and Keyboard Clubs.

Acknowledgement  http://www.organfax.co.uk/players/davidharrild/#close

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April 1st, 2017 by Steve Morl

Visiting us on 24th April 2017 is   Paul Roberts

Paul Roberts was born in Warrington, UK in 1960. In his formative years, he studied the piano, classical organ and clarinet. Whilst reading Economic History at Liverpool University he also successfully completed several music diplomas. His tutors have included Noel Rawsthorne (Cathedral and City Organist of Liverpool) and Arthur Hutchings (formerly Professor of Music at Durham University).

For well over thirty years Paul has been a consistently prominent name in the keyboard world. A regular broadcaster in the U.K. (including the BBC) and internationally, Paul has also appeared on TV in the U.K. and the USA and has been a prolific writer for music journals.

Extract from — www.robertsmusician.com

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