Chris began his musical career as a boy soldier in the Household Cavalry, studying trombone with Bill Teskey – then Principal Trombone with the BBC Symphony Orchestra – at the Army School of Music at Kneller Hall.
After a stint with NYJO in the mid-70s, Chris joined the Mounted Band of the Lifeguards, rising to the rank of Corporal of Horse, before leaving the Army in 1977 to pursue a career as a freelance musician.
His first job was as lead trombone in the orchestra at the London Palladium but, in February 1978, he was invited by Syd Lawrence to join his eponymous Orchestra. Chris stayed with the band as lead trombone until 1983, when the demands of his session career meant he was spending more and more time in recording studios.
As a session musician Chris has received acclaim from many of the music industry’s top performers. He has recorded with Frank Sinatra, Quincy Jones, Nelson Riddle, George Shearing, Bob Farnon, Angela Morley, Henry Mancini, Michel Legrand, Barbara Streisand, Natalie Cole, Liza Minelli, Mel Torme and Shirley Bassey.
His film work for composers such as Jerry Goldsmith and John Williams has included, amongst others, the soundtracks for Superman, Out of Africa, Basic Instinct, Never Say Never Again, The Living Daylights and Batman.
He has also played with Orchestras such as the LSO and RPO and performed on pop albums for the likes of Eric Clapton, Westlife, Wet Wet Wet and Queen as well as being featured in TV shows such as Stars in Their Eyes and several Royal Variety Shows.
From 1987 to 1992 Chris played lead trombone in the great Ted Heath Orchestra under the direction of Don Lusher. At the same time he was establishing a reputation as a bandleader in his own right, touring with his Great British Big Band. In 1991 he was approached by Geraldo’s widow, Manja Leigh, and asked to recreate Geraldo’s Orchestra for a series of recordings, broadcasts and tribute concerts.
In 1996, following Syd Lawrence’s retirement from touring, Chris took on leadership of the orchestra, which has thrived under his direction, keeping its invaluable legacy to British musical life alive for future generations of audiences and young musicians.