Oz McGowan is an in demand piano player on the function and event circuit, where he has performed over 3000 gigs at weddings, venues, events and functions over a 30 year ongoing career. A gifted musician and improvisor, music is his passion and he provides feel good "cool piano" along the lines and style of Jools Holland, which he delivers with energy, soul, and creativity.
He has held musical residencies at The Belfry Golf Club, Birmingham Duelling Pianos Bar, The Living Room chain of restaurants and bars, and The Jamhouse in Birmingham, where he still continues to play once a month.
"Over the years I've performed as a solo artist and also played in many different line ups, from jazz duo's & rock n' roll combos to indie bands & huge soul bands, sometimes numbering 10 people or more. This experience has given me the grounding to be able to play many different musical styles and genres. I've been fortunate enough to have played with some fabulous musicians over the years, met and supported some famous bands, visited some wonderful places and played in some amazing venues."
The Living Room, UK Nationwide
Coombe Abbey, Warwickshire
Duelling Pianos Bar, Birmingham
HMS Warrior, Portsmouth Harbour
The Belfry, Warwickshire
Ronnie Scotts, Birmingham
The Jamhouse, Birmingham
Alton Towers, Staffordshire
Hyatt Regency Hotel, Beaver Creek, Colorado, USA
Weston Park, Shropshire
People are surprised to know that I taught myself
Thats right! Apart from some jazz lessons for a couple years I'm entirely self taught. I was encouraged by a piano playing friend at school, who showed me my first few chords, and it really started from there. My grandmother on my mothers side could play the piano by ear, which is where I guess I get my musical side from, and I grew up listening to my fathers jazz & blues records, which inspired my playing.
My heroes include Ray Charles, Bruce Hornsby, Billy Joel, Johnnie Johnson and the late great and incredible Oscar Peterson.
So what am I up to at the moment?
At present I perform as a solo artist, and am always busy with my duo The Jeeps, which is now in its 20th year. Recently I have been concentrating on my new project, "The EightyNines," a trio involving my partner from The Jeeps and a sax player, playing 80's and 90's classics. I also perform with my great friend, jazz & soul vocalist Cath Nightingale, and sit in on keys duties occasionally for rock n' roll function band "Johnny & The Zephyrs"
Outside of my music I enjoy mountain biking, and a spot of fly fishing with my Dad when I get the chance. I like to make our garden at home look great, and I love cooking, food, and eating out. I have also been known to enjoy a pint of craft beer or two, whilst cracking the odd joke and laughing a lot!
I live in Sutton Coldfield, W Midlands with my wife Jen and our two gorgeous cats Mimi & Mojo.