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According to references [Groves dictionary of musical instruments I think] the number of instruments in the percussion family exceed six hundred. In reality most of the instruments will be closely related and very rare. Furthermore the standard orchestral range of instruments is smaller still. Even so, I work on a broad variety of instruments, and yet I am still asked if I repair guitars or whatever. My brain can hardly cope with all the knowledge associated with my own specialism without taking on other sections of instruments, I will leave those instruments for those instrument makers!

So to demonstrate the diversity of what I do do [hehe], below are all the posts I have written, in chronological, order starting with the two latest (which are featured on the home page) and going backwards into the depths of time.

Pixiphone Restoration (job#1416)

An expensive and time consuming repair that cost me more to do than I charged, but the decision to take on the job was for reasons of my sanity; I was beginning to be lethargic due to inaction and that was making me feel apathetic and in that direction lies depression and other mental health issues; so I took action and created something of which I am proud and I sincerely hope that it continues to give joy to future generations of little percussionists.

Scrapheap Orchestra

The Scrapheap Orchestra was a television documentary for the BBC and was shown on BBC Four. I did learned a lot during the whole project and I do look back on it with fond memories. The laughter and then roaring cheer that greeted my clash cymbals is clearly audible in the video and watching it took me instantly back to the roller coaster of emotions that I experienced that night and seeing again the instantaneous and exuberant standing ovation that the performance received (nearly) brought a tear to my eye even after all these years. I am left wondering if those instruments that I made still exist or whether they have been returned to the scrapheap.

Tubular Bell Hanging

I often get emails asking for detailed advice on how to make percussion instruments. In this video I share my opinion on hanging tubular bells.

Musser M55 Vibraphone (Job no: 1468)

Everything that is recyclable is recycled in my workshop wherever possible. This includes Musser vibraphone frames, which are made from tin foil. Although not suitable for cooking food there are lots of other uses for old tin foil, imagination is the only limiting factor. But then I am a product of my generation who grew up watching a very limited selection of kids TV including Blue Peter which failed to transform my then wayward life unlike Tony Hart who was a genius.

The Northern Lights Musical Sculpture: (part 3: top cone)

After many attempts both with pen and paper and computer power, I came to the conclusion that it was just too difficult to calculate the exact angles of the legs and I didn’t have time to be messing about, so I jumped right in and started making using my best guesses.

Musser M55 Refurbishment (Job No: 1410)

Farmers weekly states that the mental health of farmers is below the intergalactic average due to the boring nature of driving tractors around the same fields year after year. They go on to state that music has proved itself to be the best cure for psychological well being as well as improving fertility. They conclude that the best instruments to learn are percussion because you just hit ’em, plus Musser make stuff that you can easily convert for towing behind your Massive Ferguson.

The Northern Lights Musical Sculpture: (part 1: Intro)

Nordic Music Days host an annual festival this years theme is the northern Lights. For the first time the event will be held in London at the South Bank Centre. To celebrate this event I have been commissioned to create a new instrument.