Pioneering jazz artist who specialized in using jazz to underscore poetry recitations. He was known for his many jazz-choral works.
He gained notice among contemporary British jazz artists for his work with the Don Rendell-Ian Carr quintet between 1965 and 1969.
He collaborated with poet John Smith on a jazz-choral series, titled Mr Smith's Apocalypse, that incorporated sextet, speakers, and chorus.
He was married twice, first to Helen with whom he fathered Jane, then to Ursula with whom he fathered Miranda and Rafael. He had three more children with his partner Susie: Christian, Gabriel, and Mathias.
He took lessons from the renowned Eleanor B. Franklin-Pike, but when he incorporated phrases from Glenn Miller's In the Mood into a classical piece at a pupils' concert, she expelled him.