|First job||Saturday job in a cafe aged 9|
|Music||Rock, blues, funk, pop, jazz, metal, reggae….. Anything with a real band!|
|Last holiday||Track day at Le Mans|
|Enjoys||Guitars, motorbikes and my two awesome dogs|
|Marital Status||Not married|
‘Chordz’ is a contemporary music school that offers tuition in electric/acoustic guitar, drums, vocals, keyboard, piano and bass. We teach many different styles of music ranging from pop/ rock right through to jazz or classical.
What inspired you to get it off the ground?
I was very fortunate to be able to study where I did as it meant I was able to learn from some great players. My teachers had a huge influence on me and my playing. I can remember sitting in class thinking how lucky I was to be learning from musicians as talented as them and I hoped that one day it could be the other way around…. I’m still hoping!
So what makes Chordz different to other local music schools?
Our team! Each teacher has been carefully selected and for a good reason. I didn’t want to take the easy route of getting together any old group of musicians and then just turn them into teachers overnight. Instead I put a lot of time into sourcing experienced players and teachers that really know what they’re talking about. We hold a collection of degrees from some of the world’s top music colleges ranging from The Paul McCartney School in Liverpool right the way through to Musicians’ Institute in Hollywood, California. We are fortunate enough to have teachers like Jonny Aves (drums) who has toured with the lead singer of ‘Groove Armada’ – Mehdi Padidar (guitar) who currently plays and records with the Lloyd Yates band and Jesse Day, a graduate of both the ACM in Guildford and Brighton Institute of Modern Music to name just a few! This is the level of experience you would expect from teachers at an established music school in the UK or US, so why should islanders have to settle for anything less over here?
What did you do prior to this?
I left Los Angeles in 2007 after completing my degree in guitar and returned to Jersey with the idea of setting up a teaching business. I began by driving out to people’s houses and teaching one to one lessons but as I got busier it became less practical being mobile. So, I decided to open a studio at the Parade in town and it was around this time that my guitar teaching really took off. The studio soon became two studios and they soon became three. This was what led me to start Chordz.
Did that teach you any lessons you needed to succeed?
Yes, building it up bit by bit allowed me to learn how to cope with the risks and responsibilities involved with running a business in bite-size chunks.
What is the hardest thing you have learnt since starting the business?
That not everything goes to plan, in fact, a lot of it doesn’t. Always have a back up!
Any funny stories about the business starting out?
Hmm, probably none that I should mention in a magazine but if you want to see a video of the business starting up check out our Chordz Facebook page and view ‘the Making of Chordz’.
What are your plans for the future?
I always have a plan up my sleeve but if there’s one thing I have learnt lately, it is to never give them away! What I will mention though, is that we have a very special guest arriving this summer to do a one off guitar master class and evening show. Blues/ rock virtuoso Pete Friesen from Alice Cooper is coming to Chordz to teach us all a lesson in how to rock and talk about his experiences playing with Alice Cooper and Bruce Dickinson. It is not to be missed! Contact us for details.
What advice would you give to would be entrepreneurs?
I am no master of the business world in fact, I’m just a novice but my advice to anyone thinking of starting a business (especially in this current climate) is to plan it so carefully and choose your team wisely, after all you are only as strong as your weakest link.