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 at the age of eight. He held the position of leader with National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain for five years. His long tenure of the principal cornet chair at Black Dyke Mills Band was during the band’s world-beating period. As a conductor, Phillip is much in demand as a conductor and is Professional Conductor of Carlton Main Frickley Colliery Band and Cornwall’s Mount Charles Band; further afield, he directs Brass Band Berner Oberland in Switzerland.
His acclaimed series of CD recordings on the Chandos label – 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 with Richard Baker’s informative Comparing Notes series.
Phillip’s unique style and tone quality has been used by composers to combine with orchestra for film and TV soundtracks such as Anna of the Five Towns, Woman of Substance and the immensely popular BBC Television series Hetty Wainthropp Investigates – the latter receiving an Ivor Novello Award in the category of Best Music commissioned for a Broadcast Production.
He has toured extensively both as a recitalist and giving master-classes with bands throughout the world. He is a member of the internationally renowned instrumentalists assisting the Yamaha Corporation in their development of the range of wind and brass instruments.
Phillip is firmly committed to the teaching of brass band music and is Head of Brass and Woodwind at the University of Huddersfield where he conducts both the Symphonic Wind Orchestra and the University’s widely-known Brass Band comprising undergraduate students, whose standards are the result of universal and increasing acclaim locally, nationally and even internationally.
Although Phillip’s main activities continue to be a soloist and teacher, in recent years he has progressively increased his commitments as a conductor, being 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 also awarded the Mortimer Medal of the Worshipful Company of Musicians presented at the British Open Championships in Symphony Hall, Birmingham.