Robert Burns
Associate Professor Robert Burns PhD became a professional musician in the early 1970s and performed as a touring and recording bass guitarist for American soul artists such as Sam and Dave, Isaac Hayes, The Stylistics and Edwin Starr. In the late 1970s he performed in the rock opera, Tommy, with its composer, Pete Townsend of the Who and recorded for Jon Lord and Ian Paice of Deep Purple. He became a session bass guitarist in the 1980s and played on several television and film soundtracks such as Not The Nine O’Clock News, Three Of A Kind, The Lenny Henry Show, Alas Smith and Jones, Red Dwarf, Blackadder, Mr. Bean, A Perfect Spy, and French and Saunders among many other BBC and ITV shows. He also performed on three world tours as musical director for Eric Burdon of The Animals between 1982 and 1986, as well as performing in theatre productions for Bjorn Ulvaeus and Benny Anderson of Abba and Sir Tim Rice. Robert performed with Dave Gilmour (Pink Floyd), James Burton (Elvis Presley) and Frank Gambale (Chick Corea) between 1989 and 1996. He also recorded for Jerry Donahue (Joan Armatrading, Fairport Convention) on his solo album, Neck Of The Wood and toured with Jerry between 1991 and 1997. Nowadays in New Zealand, he performs with jazz/fusion band Subject2change (Subject2change (2008), Soundtracks and Inventions (2010), and Artiste (2014) and with The Verlaines (Corporate Moronic (2010), Untimely Meditations (2013). Both bands have new albums and a film scheduled for 2015. Robert is proud to use Ashdown Engineering, Picato Musicians’ Strings, Electric Wood Basses and J Retro preamps. Robert has lectured in music at the University of Otago since 2001 specialising in rock music performance, arranging, composition, music industry studies, and cultural studies. Robert is now an Associate Professor in music at Otago and his book, published by Manchester University Press, was published in January 2012.
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