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Phillip is one of the best-known names in the Brass Band world. He was born in Bo’ness, Scotland, where he began his playing career with the Kinneil Colliery Band. He held the position of leader with National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain for five years. His long tenure as Principal Cornet at Black Dyke was during the band’s world-beating period. His acclaimed series of CD Chandos recordings – The World’s Most Beautiful Melodies – is universally admired for the exquisite tone and musical expression in the playing; these recordings are featured regularly on BBC Radio and on Classic FM. Other broadcast credits recently have included an interview in Richard Baker’s informative Comparing Notes series.
Phillip’s unique style and tone quality has been combined with orchestra for film/TV soundtracks, such as Anna of the Five Towns, Woman of Substance, and the immensely popular BBC TV series Hetty Wainthropp Investigates – the latter received an Ivor Novello Award in the category of Best Music commissioned for a Broadcast Production.
He has toured extensively both as a recitalist and for master-classes throughout the world and is a Yamaha Artist, assisting the Corporation in the development of their range of brass instruments.
Phillip is firmly committed to the teaching of brass-band music at the University of Huddersfield and conducts the University’s acclaimed brass band, which is made up of current students.
Although Phillip’s main activities continue to be as a soloist and teacher, in recent years he has increased his commitments as a conductor, and as the founder of the Sellers International Band. At the All England Masters Championship, 2003 Phillip was the recipient of the Masters’ Dedicated Service Award. Additionally in 2003, in recognition of his prominent position as cornet soloist and band trainer and his resourcefulness in teaching so many brass players of the younger generation, Phillip was awarded The Mortimer Medal from The Company of Worshipful Musicians. His most recent accolade, The Iles Medal, was awarded by The Worshipful Company of Musicians in September 2013. Philip is, uniquely, the recipient of both highly prestigious awards.