Chris Tummings - Musician
Music has always been an important part of my life; as a child l remember playing and singing along to various records from my parents old Studio One collection, but it wasn’t ‘till l was about 15 that l really wanted to actually learn to play an instrument. My parents, although quite broke at the time, bought me a second hand alto sax for my 15th birthday, so excited was l that l that l taught myself to play Dave Brubecks ‘Take Five.’ l practiced and practiced till perfect and for many years it was the only tune that l could play.
My first guitar, as l recall, was a plastic toy with pictures of the Beatles on it. I was five, l couldn’t play and got so frustrated with the discord that I decided that the guitar wasn’t for me after all, maybe this was the reason for my utter dislike of Paul McCartney. Forward 36 years and while on tour playing the saxophone and acting in the musical ‘Buddy’ where everyone seemed to play the guitar, I decided to buy one, and this time found it a lot easier. Easy when you're surrounded by talented guitarists and touring the country. I practice as much as can and hope one day to be as good as the great guitar legend Jimmy Hendricks or the soulful George Benson, failing that, Alan Weeks will do.
I was the only child in my class that actually enjoyed singing in assembly; everyone told me to shut up. I guess I found my confidence again in the eighties after a stint singing with the band ‘Broken Sound’ in and around Miami. I have recorded two singles ‘Oh Girl Rescue Me’ and ‘Tougher than Tough.’ I have also appeared on the single ‘No Problem,’ the theme song to the hit TV show. I am currently in the recording studio session singing for the Nigerian rapper, Gift. I have every confidence he’ll top the charts in Lagos, once people work out what the hell he’s on about!
Having worked on the Theatre Royal Stratford’s Production of ‘Zumbi’ with the acclaimed Brazilian company ‘Bando Theatro de Olodum’ a number of years ago, I fell in love with samba beats and vibrant Brazilian rhythms. On holiday in Brazil recently, I was once again entranced by the seductive and percussive beats. Whilst in the Pelourinho, the historic town square in Salvador where slaves were publicly flogged, I again had the opportunity to play alongside some wonderful Brazilian percussionists, this time out in the open and in the land of the samba. I was rubbish before, but I can assure you, I have gotten a lot worse.”