Tomorrow night: playing the music of Steps Ahead, Mike Mainieri, Don Grolnick, Chick Corea, and Keith Jarrett. I made a playlist.

Gig with a view today, at JazzDock. First time in Prague.

Stage lights and drums in Montbrison, France.

🎵 Put this record on for the first time in a while this morning. Hugely influential on me, and still makes me feel the same as when I first heard it – can’t keep still!

Charity shop finds.

One of the many reasons I love film photography: an envelope containing scans and developed negatives is just about the only post I receive that puts a smile on my face.

Credit to Ebbsfleet for taking this one all the way. I couldn’t see anyone taking the trip to Prenton Park and beating Tranmere. Hope they go up (not least because I don’t want Aldershot to be facing them again in next year’s playoffs…)

Cathedral vibes. Time for a bit of JTQ.

Love having my desk under a skylight. Looked up from emails just now to see more than 10 red kites circling 😍

Big game tonight.

A building near Kings Cross. Arista Edu film, and a yellow filter to darken the sky.

I’m always on the lookout for new quotes about my playing, and once again YouTube has delivered:

“xylophone player has got somewhere he needs to be. Playing double speed here. Slow down my man!”


I don’t know if it’s cool, but can’t stop coming back to this brilliant Dylan cover. So much joy in this music. I felt the same about Brad Mehldau’s duo with Joshua Redman.

Love the atmosphere we get at Yazz Ahmed’s Trio gigs. I think the intimacy and quietness of it draws people in in a very different way from her larger band stuff…

Here’s a video from a couple of months back

I couldn’t possibly speculate on who just bought the domain name

Is there a better view, on the whole of the tube network, than the one between Chalfont & Latimer and Chesham?

Some Photos From Istanbul

Some of my photos from Istanbul back in December

Standing on Holy ground.

Tonight’s fare: Trad. (with my Dad).

I think I’ve scared Facebook by not logging on for a few days. They’ve started sending me emails about random events in an attempt to lure me back. SAD.

Just received another email from another company asking me to confirm that I still want to be on their mailing list. These new data protection laws are proving to be very useful in purging my email subscriptions.

The last few days have been the first time (as far as I can remember) that I’ve had my vibraphone with me on holiday. Been such a pleasure to do some practice without any distractions/guilt/obligations etc. If only I could re-create this feeling at home.

Banana Weiss beer at Weinhaus Zum Domstein. Weird, but nice.

Tonight, ‘Jazz Trumpet Sensation’ @YazzAhmed1 and her Hafla Band hit the Jazz Cafe. I’d never played here until December last year, but this is now my 4th time back. Weird how things come in waves.

Today’s rehearsal panorama: Yazz Ahmed’s band at LSO St. Luke’s. 🎵

Last day in the studio with Miguel. Coffee and merriment flowing in equal measure. 🎵

And some prints for good measure.

There’s no day quite like a scans day. Especially when I started some of these rolls 3 months ago.

This weekend I could have been gigging in Tunisia, but they couldn’t find a vibraphone. Or Dubai, but I couldn’t get a visa in time. Ah well, rainy England it is.

Hallelujah. The much coveted socket by the bed. #accommodationwin

Have you read my newsletter? Usually it’s only viewable by subscribers, but in case you want to see what you’re missing out on…

New mallets arrived today, courtesy of the fastest percussion shop in the West (or South), @SPercussion. @mikebalter #teambalter

With all the Facebook stuff going on, it seems like the right time to start posting things on a platform over which I have some control. So here it is, a blog my website ( which is then syndicated by (