JO FOOKS

JAZZ SAXOPHONIST

My Recent Illness...

Some of you may already know that I woke up on 15th May 2013 with a condition called Bells Palsy. It can happen to anyone at any age and without warning. There is still very little known about what causes this illness or how to treat it. Basically, the 7th cranial nerve somehow becomes damaged and you loose all control of your facial muscles on one side of your face. Most people recover from this condition within 2 to 3 months, however I wasnít quite as lucky and it took me 15 months before I could get a honk out of my saxophone. For some people it can take years to recover and some never recover at all. For more info on this condition please see www.bellspalsy.ws

As a self employed musician and teacher this, of course, had a dramatic impact on my income. Thankfully a fellow musician contacted The Royal Society of Musician of Great Britain on my behalf, who were enormously helpful. I am so grateful to them as their help was more than just financial. They took away a lot of the stress that I was under and enabled me to focus all my energy on getting better. 

With my first "come back" gig on the 5th October, Iím hoping to raise some money for this amazing society and also raise awareness of the fantastic support and help they offer vulnerable musicians. For more information about the work they do please see www.royalsocietyofmusicians.co.uk 

It is just amazing to be able to play the saxophone again. There were many times when I thought my musical career was over. I still canít believe that Iím actually able to play again. My face is still slightly lopsided but I am back and so looking forward to sharing the stage once again with my favorite musicians and friends. Please see my GIG page for details of my "come back" concert on Sunday 5th October...