At the close of 2021, we said a sad goodbye to our dear friend and teacher, Ian. We raise a glass, a drum stick and a shaky thing supported by his musical ‘threads to the top of our heads’ and say thank you, we love you. The North’s percussion and music scene would not be where it is today without him and indeed Global Grooves would not have been founded without his gift of music to Manchester. The bright eyed, amazed and inspired young people he nurtured unconditionally that now lead Global Grooves, would not have grown to become the musicians and people they are today. And our carnival sector will be forever owing to his generosity and guidance.
Rest well our friend.
Since 1985 Ian traded as a freelance musician, visual artist, community artist, workshop leader, musical director, composer, producer, writer, maker, project manager and teacher.
Samba drumming in the UK has evolved far beyond the quaint simplifications of Brazilian rhythms that were once the norm. The educational aspect of the work Ian delivered with percussion began with simple and highly accessible technique, but progressed quickly toward a much more complex engagement with music and performance, leading, for instance, to improvisation and composition.
Ian combined the excitement and addictiveness of community drumming with the samba’s potential to integrate a wide range of abilities and levels of experience into a new music influenced by hip-hop, bhangra and other contemporary dance genres.