You started on piano and migrated to drum kit, but at what stage did percussion first grab you?
"I used to play along all the time to The Specials and The Jam’s albums on drum kit, and then as I got older I got into Led Zeppelin, AC/DC and all the heavy metal bands. I started to have lessons at school with my drum teacher Brian Booth and he got me into the orchestral playing, timpani, jazz, and I also used to play with his big band.
"I did the Diploma Classical course at the Guildhall at the same time as the jazz course, playing with the big band there as well as jazz vibes, congas and lots of world percussion. I didn’t exactly turn my back on the orchestral stuff but I wasn’t as interested in it at that point!
"In 1993 I auditioned and got a tour with Des’ree playing hand percussion and had to leave the Guildhall at the beginning of the fourth year for that. It was kind of easy back then because everyone was using percussion with big bands, but around 2000 everyone started cutting down and putting stuff on Pro-Tools. They’d use four-piece bands and like 20 dancers instead of the other musicians!"