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Looking back on some of my experiences of the world of work I mentioned (Yep all of those were and are me! I’ve been around- huh?!) Transition from a teenager to young adult; I feel both a sense of past worry and anxiety, as well as a sense of pride.
If I had not worked those jobs, been in a mix of so many different situations, dealing with such a variety of people- I would not be who I am today. I would not do things the same way I do now, deal with situations the same way, respond to comments, suggestions and criticism the way I do.
From a young age through to present day, I have been privileged to be part of various theatre and vocal productions. From workshops to full shows, from Town hall to main Theatre and The Royal Albert Hall, I have been lucky to work with some truly amazing, talented individuals, and companies. Through this background and involvement over the years I developed my confidence to being able to write and direct my own shows (Some still waiting to be performed, some not written yet….)
It may come as no surprise that one of my passions is my love for Music Theatre. If I could, I would sit and watch shows all day! I could certainly watch some of my favourites over and over. I feel privileged to have seen Les Miserables in my adolescence, as a school trip. It has remained my firm favourite since- that is, until Wicked came along! I could watch either of them back to back continuously (and sing along!) You may hear some musicals influence in my pieces at some point- it’s inevitable really!
As a Christian, I believe I have been given a ‘second chance’, following a ‘near death’ experience in 2002. I see and treat everyday as if it were my last- that way, for me, I will always do my best to make the most of the amazing life I have been given.
Blessed with a musical upbringing from a young age and surrounded by my siblings, (growing up as ‘the middle child’) life was always hectic. All of us with musical or drama talents and a whole host more, our mum would always ferry us to and from wherever we needed to be, or asked to go (within reason) Music lessons, dance class, swimming, Judo, St Johns Ambulance (and a whole host more!) Thanks Ma- there will be a separate post about you one day- all good things ;)
As a family of 5 children, this ‘Von Trapp’ lifestyle helped to encourage and inspire my amazing musical journey. I am lucky enough to be surrounded with the rewards of my blessings everyday living a life where I get to do what I love, with a loving family!
My mum was always supportive of me pursuing my songwriting dream, assisting in helping me to record a demo cassette and CD to send out to record companies. I was lucky to record with the late great Harry Fulcher in the very picturesque Salcombe (who taught or assisted nearly all of us in the family at some point) To my surprise, age 15, I received responses from all the record companies I sent to; something at the time I was not aware that this was rare! Sadly, at that time, my songs were not right for the sound of the time. Who knew years later I would be recording my own songs in the comfort of my own home and releasing songs on my own website!
I am a firm believer that sometimes things happen for a reason. I learnt a whole host of valuable lessons during the harrowing experience of having peritonitis, in 2002. Years later, after facing the distressing times head on, I am able to ‘flip it’ and focus on positives that arose from the time. Little did I know that experiences and stories that happened would influence who I am today.
(There is a photo I could put here but it’s not for the faint hearted-check out our Facebook page for a related post!)
Not many people know this….. but before my time in hospital, I couldn’t click! People still can’t believe it when I tell them. I also had the privilege of meeting an ex-marine and hearing incredible stories of adventure. I was treated to being able to watch the very first pilot for the epic TV drama ’24’ (Kiefer Sutherland) Had I not been in the situation I was, I would probably had never watched ’24’, met a Marine or learnt to click. Some may say it was all by chance – I don’t! :)
For the last 14 years I have worked above and beyond to bring children’s dreams and wishes to fruition. After what proved to be a huge turning point in my life, whilst at University- I set on the path to becoming a Music teacher.
Following a long, convalescent period, and a miracle recovery of my diaphragm and lower abdomen, I successfully completed my degree at Middlesex University. Supported with numerous music grades for Trombone, Piano, Jazz Piano, Voice as well as Music Theory, I completed my deferred modules and was awarded a BA Hons in Performing Arts Music. (I also met my future wife- I just didn’t know it at the time!) I went on to embark on my turbulent journey to complete a PGCE in Secondary Music at Rolle College,- Exmouth, Devon. On the ‘up-side’, Tanya & I got engaged (outside the castle at Disneyland, Paris!) and she agreed to move to Devon to live with me…… at my Mum’s along with Stepdad and younger Sister all there too! None of this happened without additional stories and drama at the time, but those stories are for another time (some under lock and key!)
Initially training to be a Secondary Music Teacher (through a whole host of harrowing experiences!) I found myself securing my first teaching job at one of London’s most challenging schools- facing all kinds of situations, and being immersed within a hugely diverse community of pupils and staff.
After the first 6 months, I was faced with the daunting prospect of becoming Head of Music- as an Newly Qualified Teacher (NQT), and was then, essentially, thrust into the start of the next part of my teaching career.
I was made the happiest man in the world when the love of my life agreed to be my wife! Tales of our incredible Honeymoon in Kenya will be shared over time! As a happy married couple, we enjoyed our time living in London, amongst the hustle and bustle- and many memorable occasions with friends and family.
Following the sudden death of Tanya’s Grandad in 2009, (after a short stint in hospital, with the family believing that he would come back out again) We took on the responsibility for Tanya’s Grandparents house in Dorset. After a very enjoyable 4 and 1/2 years at the Secondary School in London, following an ‘Outstanding’ Ofsted inspection, the financial strain on tying to afford rent for our flat, as well as a mortgage and all the bills had taken its toll. It was time for a new challenge. When one door closes…..
My wife and I relocated to Dorset, living with Tanya’s Grandma, Mary. I secured a post teaching Music part time at a Junior School, which would leave me time to write songs-or so I thought! Shortly after we had moved, the reality hit- in order to afford living our lifestyle at the time, I had to get a second job. I set up my own vocal and piano tuition, which allowed me to explore being a peripatetic tutor, alongside whole classroom teaching. I was lucky to secure additional work as a Peri at the school I taught at as well, teaching voice, piano and drums.
Following two years of our new life together, along with Grandma- We were greeted with amazing news; followed by devastation and tragedy less than 3 months later. Tanya told me the incredible news that we were going to be parents!!! Our own little family, finally happening! We were overcome with joy and the exciting prospects of what would lie ahead. Tanya’s dad talked about Grandma moving in with him & Tanya’s mum. We would then have our own space for our family to grow- without stepping on each others toes! Sadly- it was not to be…. A short time after telling Mary she would be a Great Grandma for our new arrival, something devastating happened…….
Grandma was admitted to hospital following difficulty breathing. The following weeks ahead were crucial. I had so many good things going on- songwriting, teaching at school, private tuition, news that I was going to be a Daddy. I had also taken on the arduous task of putting on a performance of Bugsy Malone at the school (with me doing most of the jobs to start with, before a wonderful team came to my support).
I visited Grandma in hospital, often straight after a rehearsal for the show. I remember highlighting parts and stage directions in the scripts as if it were yesterday! A short time later, whilst I sat in the auditorium ranting through the dress rehearsal for the show (as you do with the Director hat on!) tragedy struck. Sadly, following weeks of Grandma fighting infection and becoming increasingly more unwell, I received the terrible news that she had passed away
The kids songs started as a ‘play around idea’ when at my ‘in-laws’ one weekend, with my niece, Sasha. We were playing on the keyboard I had at the time and trying out different instrument sounds, backing beats and chord combos. Once we found a groove she liked, I found a chord set that worked, a catchy lick; and that spurred a songwriting marathon churning out 4 songs. (Can I see your tickets Please? The Sea Song, The Round up Song, My Teddybear)
Boom! I had found my new passion- working to write songs for my niece. She would not only be open and honest, telling me if what I had written was any good or not, but she would help unlock a new pathway in my life that has led to where I currently am. For that, I am eternally grateful- Thanks Sasha! x
As an outstanding, experienced educator of all ages both in and outside the classroom-for private music tuition, I continually review my teaching style and creative approach when getting a message or lesson across to others.
Others have commented on my unique, infectious (in a good way) ability to tap into how others see and understand things.
I was recently stunned receiving amazing comments from a team of Inspectors from ‘Ofsted’. Amongst other comments they said ‘The teaching of music is exemplary’, ‘a strength’, ‘progress is strong’.
When I have asked people about my 3 best, strongest qualities I am humbled to say that they said the following: Caring, fun, loyal, determined, dedicated, committed, inspiring.
When I ‘flew the nest’ to go to Uni, I did something I never thought I’d do. At the time, I was learning to play a number of instruments, including the drums. A full kit was never ‘on the cards’ at home, with a ‘full house’ but my mum did get me a Snare Drum, sticks and stand so I could practice something.
A good friend of mine, at the time had always wanted to play the drums, but like me, didn’t have a kit. So I faced the challenging decision of trying to store my drum somewhere, knowing full well that there wasn’t room- or give it to someone who I could inspire to become what they always dreamed of.
Fast forward 9 years and that young man became drummer for a rock band and was hugely successful! Who would’ve thought that one act of kindness would lead to a world of success and prosperity!
On the songwriting front, I have had praising feedback from Industry professionals including the song assessment service from The Guild of International Songwriters and Composers, of which I have been a member of for the last 13 years.
Following an initial assessment in 2010:-
All categories of assessment were rated Excellent and commented that the songs were worth working with.
Additional comments were:
The song and performance has an excellent commercial value.
It has a cross-over appeal to attract artistes working in this style.
Consider selling an album of Children’s songs
The following year I received ‘Highly commended’ certificates in the UK Songwriting Contest 2011 Children’s genre category (Snap! Went alligator and Can I see your tickets please?)
Thousands of people from all ages have commented about how I am able to ‘connect’ with others in a way that leaves them feeling inspired and feeling great about themselves, what they are able to achieve and believe in themselves.
It is so humbling to receive so many lovely comments and feedback from people all over the world and am I so so thankful for the gift I have been given, and the opportunities that have been provided for me- both amazing and challenging!
To sum up from a range of people’s feedback about my songs and personality-
Scott has a distinctive sound throughout many genres of music and to have that is something quite special in this day and age. Although he has definitely found a niche in writing amazing kids songs, he has so much more to offer in other styles- Let us look forward to hearing the next best thing!
His positive nature and ‘down-to-earth’ character ensure that he genuinely cares and believes in what he does and says- a rare trait in someone nowadays.
The rest, as you might say, is history but the roller coaster of the last 18 years really has shaped the man I have become today. I have taken the approach to Invest more time in myself and my family. To quote one of my favourite musicals- Avenue Q ‘When you help others, you can’t help helping yourself’. I often reflect on things with my wife, on how challenging situations don’t last forever, with another quote from Avenue Q ‘It’s only for now!’
I have noticed that I have mentioned several times about harrowing experiences, distress and drama-It is through my experiences and the challenges I have faced, that I am so pleased to be able to share my stories with others, helping to inspire and create the dream lifestyle that we all so eagerly crave!
The lessons and reflection I teach and learn everyday are what has inspired me to share all the ‘good and positive’ outcomes with others. Yes, primarily this has been through Children’s songs, but on reflection and deciding the next turning point in my life, I decided that the creation of Welcomme Wonderland is a whole lot more than kids songs- I look forward to you joining me on the adventure of a lifetime!
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