Reaching out with music

  • Community
  • Wednesday, 17 Oct 2012

Expert advice: Hutchings giving tips on how to become a great musician to the kids.

Roland Asia Pacific is not only a household name for guitar effects but also an avid supporter of the local music scene and an organisation with a heart. At the back of sponsoring the instruments at StART Society’s recent concert, once again they sponsored an exclusive music workshop for some 100 underprivileged children.

This time, they had Alex Hutchings, guitar maestro, singer and song writer come to inspire and coach the guitar students at StART. Alex, who hails from Bristol, England, has been touring Asia to promote Roland’s wide range of guitar effects. He made it a point to stop by to inspire the next generation of guitarists.

“What’s exciting about this workshop is that it fits with our philosophy of NOT giving from the bottom of the barrel, and Alex was such a top class guitarist,” said Joshua Lee, Programme Director of StART Society.

In the 2-hour session with the children, he regaled them with his virtuosic performance by playing quite a few popular tunes including Misty, Spain and some classic rock numbers.

In the second hour, Hutchings went through the basics of setup and posture. He stressed that it was important to have the right ergonomics in order to enjoy long term playing and to avoid any arm or wrist injury. Alex then spent time talking about his childhood and how it all started with his father’s influence and love for the guitar. He took his sweet time to explain how passion, discipline and learning to enjoy the art form really made things work for him.

“Whatever it is that you pursue in life, never forget to sit back and truly enjoy what you’re doing because that will get you going a long way,” said Hutchings.

The art of listening in such a way that you’re lost and consumed by the music is another secret formula that Hutchings shared with the children. In a world where we’re constantly on the move and distracted by a myriad of electronic devices, he reckons we don’t listen as well as we used to.

“Roland came in full force with their top equipment as if they were going to present their stuff to a group of professional guitarists or to serious business dealers. That really impressed me,” said Vincent Ramesh, guitar teacher at StART.

Alex Hutchings is one of Britain’s top guitarists known for his fluid style of playing and his ability to play a wide range of styles and genre. He is described as an inspired guitarist, possessing an immaculate technique that places him in a different league to his contemporaries. His playing has an authenticity and passion that is often lacking in the modern approach.

Roland is a key player in electronic music instruments who believe their social responsibility as a company committed to a culture of creativity. They strive to do their BEST to be an organisation that inspires. Roland has been bringing in musicians of international repute into our shores to inspire our local musicians.

To volunteer or inquire how you can sponsor a programme or support the cause, write to the programme director at

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