Late in 2001, I was pulled aside by a good friend and fellow busker at Salamanca Market in Hobart to be told I might expect a phone call from a bass player called Conrad asking about depping some gigs for a band called Shooglenifty. I had heard of neither the bass player nor the band but later that day met Conrad and got told that the Shoogles would be touring Australia in a months time - if I was up for it there might be some work for me.

I was, and the work was there, and after doing the tour I accepted the invite to go play full time with the band in Scotland. This was, and still is, a great opportunity for me, not only to play great music with a great bunch of people, but also to enter the festival musician circuit and meet fellow travellers.

If nothing else, the last ten years has taught and shown me the immediacy with which music can communicate across language, politics and culture and that despite anything else it can bring joy.

For me, being able to be taught and shown that, is the greatest opportunity that this ride with Shooglenifty has offered and continues to reinforce.