Mike has been playing the guitar since he was at school and throughout his adult life he has been playing a variety of instruments but mostly classical guitar. In the 90s he performed at the Blackpool Music Festival. He won the strings section and went on to win the Percy Dayman Cup for all instrumentalists by playing Tarrega’s Recuerdos De La Alhambra. As a teenager he dabbled with the ukulele but returned to it around eight years ago and this has now become his main instrument.
He plays tenor, concert, soprano and piccolo ukuleles as well as classical and folk guitar and mandolin. In 2014 he took up the guitalele, which is a cross between a ukulele and guitar. “The guitalele plays like a guitar but sounds like a ukulele. It is much more convenient to play and to transport but allows me to perform every piece that I play on the guitar.” He has also taken music examinations including the Performer’s Certificate in classical guitar awarded by Trinity College.
Mike leads the Garstang ukulele Group on Sunday afternoons and has led a group in Arnside. For many years he was a member of the Moremcambe group and he makes regular visits to ukulele clubs in Lancashire and Cumbria. He plays at festivals and other music events and is a ukulele festival addict. He also plays with groups called Ukulele Jukebox in which everyone plays ukuleles, and a group called The Charity Cases where he is doing some missiionary work to get everyone playing ukuleles :-)
He also plays in a trio called Ukulele Bassics - note the spelling as this music is far from basic. The lead ukulele player is one of the best players around (and it's not Mike).