Like many organ enthusiasts, as a young man, Charles became captivated by the broadcasts of the legendary Blackpool Tower Organist Reginald Dixon. Although music hasn't been his full time profession, Charles's musical career has nevertheless been an extensive one. From his time playing the Compton Organ of the Davenport Theatre in Stockport, to his long residency in command of the Stockport Town Hall Wurlitzer Organ, Charles's musical experience is both varied and interesting.
In the 1980's Stockport was unique in having two Compton Theatre Organs in their original homes and playable. Charles would feature the Compton Organ of the former Plaza Cinema, then a bingo hall on a Saturday evening, and then travel up the road to the Davenport Theatre and play for the film shows. Playing the organ at the Davenport gave Charles rare experience of playing an
original cinema organ in a venue that was little changed from when it was
opened in the 1930's.
In the late 1980's Charles joined the small team who were installing a Compton Theatre Organ in Chorley Town Hall. This organ remained at Chorley until a few years ago, and Charles is now the owner of the organ and is looking for a suitable home for it!
As well as playing theatre organs, Charles has often been 'out and about' the North West of England for many years, taking his own organ or keyboard playing for dancing in various venues.
In the late 1990's Charles was introduced to Eric Barlow, then resident organist of Stockport Town Hall. Charles is appreciative of the guidance he has received from Eric, in regard to the special technique required for strict tempo playing. As Eric had indicated his desire to retire from the Town Hall,
Charles began to share the alternate Monday night dances with Eric, eventually taking over as resident organist upon Eric's retirement in 2000. With 15+ years of playing the Stockport Town Hall Wurlitzer Organ
twice a month, Charles has notched up well in excess of 300 appearances at
Charles continues to feature the Stockport Wurlitzer for dancing, playing most alternate Mondays.
Charles on 'home ground' at the ex Paramount/Odeon/Free
Trade Hall Manchester Wurlitzer, now installed at Stockport Town Hall
At the Conn Theatre Organ of St Peter's Church, Stockport
At the mighty Wurlitzer of the Alabama Theater, Birmingham, USA
At another mighty American Wurlitzer, this time the Fox Theater, St Louis