Vocal / Guitar / Banjo
Born in Crookston West Otago, Jeff showed an acute interest in music from an early age.
At the age of 6 he began learning guitar from his older sister, followed by 5 years of classical piano tuition.
After being influenced by early 70’s Rock, he settled into Country music where he found his niche, subsequently gaining international recognition and winning many awards as a singer / songwriter.
His first “big break” was winning the inaugural New Zealand Gold Guitar Songwriting Awards in 1980.
After this initial step into the realm of the professional entertainment industry, Jeff performed extensively throughout New Zealand and began to regularly appear on several TVNZ programmes including “Threshold Promotion Company”, Stars on Sunday”, “Sing Out” and “Dixie Chicken”.
Travelling to Australia he received rave reviews for his performances at the annual Tamworth Country Music Festival and established himself as one of New Zealand’s leading exponents of modern Country music.
In 1982 his debut album “First Steps” was released to widespread critical acclaim.
During this period, Jeff combined a busy live performance schedule with regular appearances on TVNZ’s “That’s Country”.
While appearing on the show, he met Nashville recording star Gary Morris who, impressed with Jeff’s performing and songwriting abilities, invited him to Tennessee.
And so began an exciting time in Jeff’s career.
He had the opportunity to experience the music industry in America from the ground up.
Beginning as a Tour Technician, Jeff quickly progressed through Morris’s organization becoming his Production Manager, responsible for sound, lighting and all aspects of the Concert performance.
Well aware of Jeff’s musical skills, Gary Morris invited him to join his touring band in the role of Band leader, acoustic guitarist and vocalist.
It wasn’t long before Jeff established a fan base of his own which quickly developed into a centre stage feature spot within every Gary Morris concert.
Now an integral part of The Morris Organization, Jeff’s next challenge was as Assistant Producer of the Hunting / Fishing weekly television show hosted by Gary Morris.
This in turn led to the role of Co-Producer for the Soundtrack to the environmental movie “A Place to Grow”.
About this time Jeff released his 2nd album of original songs “Full Circle”, recorded in Nashville and produced by Gary Morris, before family commitments saw him return to New Zealand and his property at Crookston, West Otago.
A boyhood friend of Oxo Cuban co-founder Doug Wright, it was only a matter of time before Jeff was invited to become a member of the ever expanding Oxo musical family, joining the band in 1999.
Since his return to New Zealand, he has established the New Zealand Songwriters Trust, developed and revitalized the Country music category of New Zealand’s National Annual Tui Awards and is the resident producer at Owaka’s award winning Sweetway Recording Studios.
In addition to his performances with the Oxo Cubans, he returns to America each year to join old friend Gary Morris for his Christmas concert tour.