derek2Derek Russell (Trombone)

"As a boy my introduction to music was through being a chorister in my local church. I have sung in several church choirs including the Rochester Cathedral Auxiliary Choir. At present I sing with Rochester Choral Society and I am the choir master of St. Margaret’s church in High Halstow.

I am a founder member of the Southfields Stompers which is a six piece traditional jazz band. The band was formed in 1986 from players from Northfleet Brass who were interested in playing jazz. I became the banjo player as there were two trombones & I was the only one who could play the banjo. We are still playing although we have had several changes of personnel over the years.

When at secondary school I heard a trombone trio play and was immediately drawn to the instrument. I taught myself to play and starting playing regularly with Cranbrook Town Band then when I moved house I played with Northfleet Brass for thirteen years. I had to give up after my two daughters were born. It was a question of band or divorce!

After a gap of twenty years I am now playing with Gravesend Borough Band and was very pleased to be invited to play with the Peninsula Big Band which I find most enjoyable."