Rowland who!?

I define my career not so much in the traditional sense of an ‘occupation/profession with opportunities for progress’ but more in line with the alternative definition of ‘falling headlong out of control.’ After graduation, I became the best qualified toilet cleaner in Manchester Polytechnic, before taking up a post lecturing in Communications in the same institution, a move that threw the Personnel Department into utter confusion, much to my delight. After a few years of teaching ‘the Butchers’ ‘The Panel Beaters’ and other groups of disenchanted students, I blagged a job in the new industry of video production in which I worked for the next 25 years as a director, writer, producer, presenter — or as I prefer to describe it as an ‘all-round media prostitute’. My musical ventures were similarly – er, unpredictable – from touring with US pop bands Limmie and the Family Cookin’ and The Exciters, to getting involved with Prince – (the talking dog of ‘Sausages’ fame – not his Royal Purpleness!) and producing ‘Edward Fox’ by Smack which reached the Top 50 Alternative Charts.

In 2007, I moved to Italy with my new wife, Lesley, and spent seven years gigging and performing my 'contaminated blues', at bars, gigs and many major festivals including Etna Blues, Torrita Blues, Blues Made in Italy, Trasimeno Blues, and I was the only non-Italian to be invited to perform at South Italy Blues Connection – for three consecutive years. I also hosted my own show called ‘The Blues and Beyond’ on Radio Imago based in Rome, and  began doing some illustration work, contributing regularly to Zuiderlucht, an arts-journal based in Maastricht, providing a column RAM, based on my blog I also illustrated a book of Dutch poetry and was commissioned to design an edition for Matchboox, a publisher of hand-made miniature books based in Amsterdam. In 2014, I returned to the North West, where I continue to sing, play, write and generally enjoy myself.

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