These words from the 1976 John Miles song sum it up for me. I can't imagine a world without music or what my life would have been like without it. Strong stuff from someone with no musical ability of his own. My musical taste is very broad, although I'm not fond of country music. My late father was a classical music enthusiast who played 78rpm records of Tchaikovsky symphonies and piano concertos to me from the time I was in my cradle, so I suppose that's where it started. Over sixty years later, I still turn first to classical music.
In my early teens, I listened to the emerging sounds of rock 'n' roll and that British phenomenon, skiffle. I must have driven my parents mad with my two Lonnie Donegan records. From that I developed a strong interest in pop music, especially the four-piece guitar groups typified by The Shadows. I rated the Beatles as entertainers rather than as musicians but admired their song-writing abilities.
As the 1960s drew to a close, chart music no longer satisfied me and I moved on to the virtuoso super-groups such as Cream, Led Zeppelin and Yes. An interest in folk-rock groups such as Fairport Convention and Steeleye Span followed, also The Pentangle, a band that defied categorisation. Punk appalled me but I was rescued by Dire Straits and Shakatak. Since then, pop music has done nothing for me at all.
Later I renewed my interest in jazz, though not the faux-traditional variety that enjoyed chart success in the early '60s in a rather commercialised form. The High Barn, Great Bardfield hosts monthly Jazznights with residents the Roger Odell Trio and vocalist Larraine Odell, complemented by a wide range of guest artists. Many of my photographs of them can be seen on the Jazznights Gallery.
These are some of the music makers I admire the most:
Bands and Instrumentalists
All lists inevitably have some omissions so please regard this as an incomplete document!