Ben Daglish ben-daglish.net

Biographies

Here are my 'official' biographies of varying lengths suitable for cutting-and-pasting when necessary, and some further detail for anyone that's interested. Shortest first.

The 'one liner'

Ben Daglish is a multi-instrumentalist composer, teacher, performer and programmer. He plays with a number of different groups, and lives with his partner and three children in the Peak District.

The 'paragraph'

Ben Daglish was born in 1966 in London. He moved to Sheffield as a small child, and grew up benefiting from both its peripatetic instrumental service and its cheap bus fares. He was the principal percussionist for the City Of Sheffield Youth Orchestra, and performed extensively as both percussionist and conductor before starting to compose music for computer games in the early 1980's. He moved on to compose and perform for a number of theatre companies as MD/actor/musician in places as diverse as Belfast, Tuscany and Jerusalem. Ben currently plays various instruments with a number of different ensembles (most notably Loscoe State Opera), and lives with his partner and three children in the Peak District. When he's not playing music, he works as a programmer, writing network device backup software for Restorepoint.

The 'Full Monty'

Like many others, some days I'm a musician, and some days a programmer. Music is my mistress, but unfortunately it doesn't pay anywhere near as much as the programming... In my deeper philosophical moments, I like to think of both of them as being related - part-and-parcel of my life's work, which seems to be something to do with the art/science of spotting and manipulating 'patterns'. The rest of the time though, I think that it's just to do with playing games with whatever's to hand, be it an instrument, a computer keyboard or a bit of string.

Musically, I started on the whistle and harmonica (still my first instrument...) around 5 or 6, thanks to my Mum, who with my father used to run the Three Feathers folk club in London. I had a stint at cornet in the local Brass Band (until stopped 2 years later by my oboe teacher - "It'll ruin your embouchure"....balls!), and settled on orchestral percussion as my main study from about 12. I was principal percussionist for the City Of Sheffield Youth Orchestra for many years, (gigs included the Albert Hall and Czechoslovakia) and carried on working with orchestras for many years, eventually conducting both the Sheffield Youth Orchestra and the Wolverhampton Symphony Orchestra.

My flute was an 18th birthday present, (still the one I play today) and I spent a year learning every Jethro Tull solo I could find, before putting it down a year later - "done the flute now" I thought. Oh the arrogance of youth. I discovered jazz later...

After an abortive stint at Essex University studying maths (but a hell of a social life), I started composing music for computer games. More than you could ever want to know (a few thousand pages at last google) about this period is available for your viewing pleasure on the Net, so I won't bother. Suffice to say, I'm semi-famous in Scandinavia...

5 years later, I stopped in order to do 'real-world music' and spent the next 5 years composing and acting as musical director for a number of theatre shows, and occasionally as performing as an actor/musician, before financial and domestic responsibilities tempted me back into working with computers, this time simply as a programmer-analyst.

Since moving to Derbyshire, I started playing with a number of bands, and often act as a 'frontman', drawing on my theatrical experience to 'work the crowd'. I still occasionally come out of "retirement" where theatre is concerned, and get involved with as many interesting musical projects that come my way.

I currently own upwards of a hundred different instruments, and play about half of them whenever our paths cross, but concentrate mainly on whistle, flute, guitar and percussion.

When not playing music, I work as a programmer writing network device backup software for Restorepoint.