Biography

I always wanted to play guitar.

When I was 6 years old, I started to play the flute, as I was told that you have to wait until your fingers are long enough if you want to play guitar (which is bullshit). At age 13, I got my first guitar. I was very surprised to learn how to hold a guitar, because I instinctively wanted to hold the guitar the lefthanded way. I tried to play righthanded, but after a few months my teacher suggested to restring the guitar the lefty way.
As I can write with both hands, I am pretty sure today, that I would also have learned to play righthanded but…oh well…I am a lefty and hey, it is a definite cool factor, just look at Hendrix…At age 17, I was already quite a good blues and rock player. I transcribed a lot of Gary Moore, who is still a major influence on my playing today. But I wanted to learn more, as I also got interested in players like Larry Carlton, George Benson, Mike Stern and others. They played licks that sounded jazzy, and I just could not figure out how to do that. Back then, I had an American girlfriend. I flew to the States, went to GIT in Hollywood, the big guitar school, but got very disappointed, because I did not like their attitude. I thought that they just wanted my money and tried to make you believe that only a fast guitar player would be a good one.
Accidently, back in Germany I met a great French jazz guitar teacher, who invited me to the jazz class at the Conservatory of Music in Strasbourg, France.There was a big audition for the three guitar players they admitted every year, and I passed. This was really good for me, because I had about 10 to 15 hours of classes every week and paid only 200 Francs a year. And I probably learned as much as I could have taken out of GIT. My guitar teacher, Jean-Pierre Herzog, told me a very unique and understandable approach to Jazz and I really appreciate him. Besides guitar I had ear-training, arranging, piano classes and band playing workshops. By that time I played in a German Top 40 band (Sound Factory), but also in 2 big bands (Top Time and Brass’n’Groove). I also became more and more part of the Strasbourg musician scene and played with more people and was also hired as a studio musician quite a bit.

 

In 1991, I left the conservatory but I moved to Strasbourg and started studying languages. As my French and my English were quite good already, I was lucky to have a lot of time for music. Studying was not very hard, so I actually played a lot. I remember playing in 6 bands at the same time for a while. In 1993 I created an unplugged trio named “No PLUGS” and really played a lot of acoustic gigs.I also ended up playing with the big Strasbourg musicians. Let me just mention 2 peaple here, because I am still playing with them today and to me they are not just great players but also friends: Pilou Wurtz on bass and Didier Hofmann on drums. Pilou has played among others with Frank Gambale and Didier has toured with Birelli Lagrene and even played with Jaco Patorius.In 1994 I joined French Pop Band “Tiramisu “. We won the “revelation of the year” contest in Alsace, played quite a few tv shows, shot a little video, but after 1 year that was it.
In 1995, I graduated from university with a masters degree in “Applied Foreign Languages”.
After a few big disappointments in 1996 I joined Power Pop band “Stonewash” at the end of 1996 and created my own label “JC music”.I also decided not to accept any gig anymore, I got tired of playing covers and decided to focus more on my own projects and music that I really like.After working as a freelance translator for a while, I decided to focus more on information technology, became Microsoft certified Systems Engineer in 1999 and worked in IT besides playing music.
Probably the biggest gig I had was in 2000, where I played with legendary French drummer Pierre Moerlen from 70’s progressive band GONG.
In 
It was a good experience for me, I learned a lot about odd rhythms and was featured on guitar and guitar synthesizer. Some of the songs we played were originally with Alan Holdsworth and Mike Oldfield on guitar, so it was a real honour for me to play with the Moerlen brothers.In 2002 and 2003 I played a lot of Reggea with french bands “Free-K” and “Mystic Man”.
In 2008 I released my first Solo album.
Guitarists that have influenced my playing very much:
Gary Moore, Mike Stern, Robben Ford
Guitarists I really like also include:
Frank Gambale, Jamie Glaser, Paul Gilbert, Alan Holdsworth, Keith Urban, Pat Metheny, George Benson, Michael Schenker, Michael Lee Firkins, Jake E Lee,
Michel Cusson, Birelli Lagrene, Sylvain Luc, Michael Sagmeister…to name but a few