Welcome To idol Hands Music, Art & Design

Idol Hands started in 2009 by husband and wife Matt & Elle Hayes. For nine years they ran a music school in Oxted teaching guitar, bass, drums, piano and vocals. The school was popular locally for having such amazing teachers. In 2017 it was time to move to bigger premises.

Idol Hands Music, Art & Design now resides at 24 Station Road West, Oxted.  At the new address there is a shop selling guitars, drums & accessories. There is a gallery for local artists with occasional art evenings. Through the back we have the Idol Hands Music School and rehearsal and recording space.

Meet Our Team

Matt Hayes
Matt HayesDirector / Guitar & Bass Tutor
Matt has been surrounded by music since the day he was born, following his Dads music career throughout the 80’s and 90’s with various rock bands, and thus started to learn the guitar at 15.

During the next few years Randy & The Rockets was created, and Matt was asked to be their bass player. Having only learned the guitar so far, he spent the next six months practising and the rest, as they say, is history.

Randy & The Rockets have continued to gig ever since, with Matt as their bassist, rhythm guitarist, vocalist and keyboard player.

For the next 14 years Matt also focused on his career as a graphic designer, working for global companies such as Aston Martin, Harry Potter, Nestle, Porsche and the BBC.

It was during this time he met and bonded over music with Martin Mickels, and so began a long musical partnership, leading on to many different projects i.e. stadium rock covers bands Blacksnake, Saints n Sinners and original music for their bands Crysys and Empire Kill.

Realising that music was his true passion; he left the corporate world to join a local music shop Uptempo, as their Manager, and guitar/bass teacher. Whilst at UpTempo, Matt toured with international band Esoterica, and played with Reckless Ambition (now, recently signed, Saltlake) and DJ’d at some of the South East’s biggest rock venues.

In 2009 an opportunity arose to begin his own business, Idol Hands Music & Design Ltd, providing music lessons for guitar, bass, vocals, piano, drums and music production. Shortly after setting up the music lessons, Matt went on to include a professional recording, photography and design studio, with clients such as comedian and actor Neil Mullarkey, Rolling Thunder and celebrity chef Patrick Williams.

Over the years various other projects came along, including creating The Burning Heart Festival, recording and producing for The Bear And The Bird’s debut album, co-founding mutli-genre record label Mostar Records, and originals duo LickSpittle with Luke Manning.

Bands on the label have included The Riot Tapes, Matt and Luke’s very own alternative outfit LickSpittle (who reached #1 with their second single Lush Hound in Palembang, Indonesia in August 2011), US band Dangerous Idiots and former Queens of the Stone Age, Stewart Copeland, Martina Topley-Bird and Tricky collaborators The Future Shape of Sound.

Luke and Matt continue to write for LickSpittle with a debut album in the pipeline, coming soon.

As well as gigging and teaching, Matt and Martin have run regular, massively successful open mic nights in and around the local area, giving and encouraging local talents of all ages and abilities, an opportunity to perform live.

If you would like to book guitar or bass lessons with Matt, studio time or any graphic design work, please contact us on 01883 370 240, PM us directly or email lessons@idolhands.net

More recently Matt started the charity Clockwork, based in the same building as Idol Hands, which helps young adults with depression and anxiety.

Elle Hayes
Elle HayesManager / Vocal Tutor
Elle has been singing from a very early age performing for all of her toys and friends on a daily basis. Taking part in musicals and plays throughout her school years, enjoying the performing and singing, and assisting backstage with props/costumes etc, but soon realised that theatre was not where she belonged and that singing was her real desire.

She started jamming with friends from the age of 18, and was encouraged by her family to apply to a music course. In 2002 she registered at the Academy of Contemporary Music in Guildford, studying contemporary vocals, music theory and harmony, live performance, aural perception, technical studies and business. Elle qualified with a merited Higher Diploma and moved to South London.

Elle went on to provide session vocals for artists, recording lead and backing vocals, gigging with local groups and attending any and every open mic night she could get to. She joined the team at UpTempo music shop in 2008, working the shop floor and teaching. Shortly after this she and her family moved to Oxted.

In 2009 she assisted Matt in creating and setting up Idol Hands Music & Design Ltd, and soon after began teaching performance and vocals. From here Elle has continued her work as a session singer, recording vocals for Moonshine & Molly’s debut album Timeline, delivering backing vocals for local bands Randy & the Rockets and Moonshine & Molly.

Now our full time Manager, she is travelling all over the country gigging with girl trio The Lovettes, gigging acoustic duo Manhattan & Mary Jane, and vintage covers duo The Whiskey Sours.

If you would like vocal lessons with Elle please PM us directly, email us on lessons@idolhands.net, or call us 01883 370 240.

Martin Mickels
Martin MickelsGuitar Tutor
Martin started his musical career with the piano but soon realised that only the guitar would cut it. He studied for the next ten years, jamming with family, playing in originals band Flipside and writing guitar instrumental tunes.

Martin then began teaching guitar aged 16 and in 2000, released his first album ‘Pulse’ which lead to the Guitarist of the Year finals and was tipped as ‘the next British Steve Vai’ by Guitarist magazine. In 2002 he attended The Academy of Contemporary Music where he was taught by Guthrie Govan, Dave Kilminster and Jamie Humphries amongst others.

He then joined Statetrooper, recording ‘The Calling’ album in Germany and touring UK and Europe. The next few years he went on to play for Never The Bride, Violent Storm and several arena gigs with The Sweet, travelling all over Europe. Further to that he Co-founded Empire Kill, who had the opportunity to play at Sonisphere with Metallica headlining.

Martin has been playing with covers band Randy and the Rockets since 2006, and continues to demo at various guitar shows throughout the nation for Guitar Magazine and Feline Guitars.

Also, he is currently in Moonshine & Molly, a duo playing covers and performing original material including their album Timeline, written in partnership with Maz Bascal.

Lastly, Martin is literally our very own Guitar Star! Competing on SkyArts Guitar Star of 2015, getting through numerous rounds and into the rock section final.

Bari Parrott
Bari ParrottGuitar Tutor
Bari Parrott is a composer/musician for Film, TV & Video whose work has received a number of accolades over the last 7 years.

His band career began writing and recording material for rock group ‘esOterica/ESO’ who have released several albums & received critical acclaim from the UK press. After featuring in countless magazine articles & with the ascendancy of their music videos & singles releases ‘esOterica/ESO’ have enjoyed a degree of success. Robert Plant (Led Zeppelin) is amongst a host of fans to personally compliment the band on their achievements. They have gone on to support Marilyn Manson on two of his European tours & their new album titled “We Are Watching You” has recently been released featuring composer Tyler Bates (300, Watchmen, Guardians of the Galaxy).

Now being recognized as an emerging talent in composing, Bari has quickly become the “go to” composer for several media companies & directors/producers, frequently working alongside clients such as #volvo, #rangerover, #guinness, #revlon, #rimmel & #BT to name a few.

Bari also composed for short film “3 Hours” by upcoming director Regan Hall. It went on to win “Best Short Film” at Foyle Film Festival and qualify for the Oscars.

After graduating from Guildfords ‘Academy of Contemporary Music’ Bari now writes and records from his studio in Surrey, teaches at several private schools and from the legendary #idolhands!

Henry Gottelier
Henry GottelierGuitar Tutor
Since picking up the guitar at the age of 7, Music was the driving force behind Henry’s education and career.

As well as having guitar lessons, Henrys passion pushed him to teach himself many techniques and skills at a young age. After playing and studying music all throughout school Henry enrolled at The British and Irish Modern Music Institute where he graduated in 2016 with a BA Hons Degree in Professional Musicianship.

Henry is a busy Freelance musician and has gained notable experience playing some of the UKs most prestigious music venues whilst on tour. Currently, Henry is the main songwriter and frontman in the upcoming originals Alternative Rock trio ‘Saltlake’, as well as fronting the Classic Rock tribute act ‘Groove Hoover’.

Henry has also had the privilege of recording with some of the UKs most recognised producers and at some of the top recording studios in the country.

Henry is a passionate, enthusiastic educator, with a wealth of knowledge he loves sharing with anyone willing to learn.

Mat Hammond
Mat HammondGuitar Tutor
Mat Hammond is an accomplished musician, singer, songwriter and producer with a long and varied career behind him. After years of begging and pleading with his parents, Mat finally got his first guitar at the age of 8 and began teaching himself to play by noodling around trying to match the notes with the songs he played on his record player. In his teens he formed his first band and switched to playing bass as his full time instrument.

By his 20s, feeling that he’d gone as far as he could being self-taught, Mat left the U.K. and moved to Hollywood, CA, to attend the esteemed Musicians Institute where he studied Bass, Vocals, Guitar, Songwriting and Music Business.

After graduating he went on to spend the next several years in the U.S.A. working both as a professional musician and also simultaneously on the flipside of the music industry as a Sales and Marketing Executive with one of the world’s largest musical instruments manufacturers.

During his tenure as a U.S. resident, he recorded, toured and was involved with a number of musical projects ranging from hard progressive rock to rap to pop and big band/jazz not just as a bassist, but also as a guitarist and vocalist and this diversity allowed Mat to truly stretch his creative and technical muscles in all sorts of directions.

Mat has been the subject of several television and radio features and numerous press articles with many of his own musical projects including the band “Living Daylytes” which completed a headlining tour of the USA in 2003 after signing with an independent record label. Both Living Daylytes, and his follow up outfit, “Eurovox” have albums that are available for download through Amazon, i-Tunes and CDBaby, as well as hard copy CDs through the UK-based distributor, Detour Records.

Now, relocated back to his home in the South-East Counties of the U.K., he is once again forging a musical path, both as a solo artist/performer, and is one half of several duos such as Double6, Manhattan & Molly (Maz Bascal), and Manhattan & Mary Jane (Elle Hayes).

Anthony Bilotti
Anthony BilottiGuitar Tutor
Jacob Purcell
Jacob PurcellBass Tutor
Dave Harding
Dave HardingPiano Tutor
Dave started learning the violin at the age of 6, and then the piano a couple of years later. He was classically trained in these to a very high level and gained many years of experience with a wide variety of orchestras, chamber groups and as a soloist. These included performances in the Fairfield and Festival Halls amongst many others, and appearances on television.

Dave joined his first band as a keyboard player at the age of 13. It was an exciting era when synths were moving to the forefront of popular music. Embracing this, Dave got involved with different pop and rock projects, alongside classical ones, and performed in festivals and venues across the country.

Even when his career went all ‘corporate’, Dave still continued to teach, write and record, also becoming an accomplished multi-instrumentalist.

Leaving the corporate world, Dave moved to Oxted and became a Coach and Hypnotherapist. He also returned to his music roots, joining the teaching team at Idol Hands in 2012. He has taught piano to a lot of students of all ages over many years, helping them achieve fantastic scores across the grades. He also loves teaching students who want to learn in a more contemporary style and just have fun. Being a tutor on the excellent Idol Hands Holiday Bootcamps has been a great opportunity to teach students about playing, writing and recording.

Dave continues to work on different projects as musician and songwriter. He has written and recorded with various local artists and groups, including a performance of his song ‘Silent Starry Night’ by Kent Junior Choir and, most recently with Crashing White Horses for their Christmas song ‘Next Year’. He has written classical piano compositions, and his songs were awarded finalist positions in 3 categories in the 2015 UK Songwriting Contest.

Hayley Coventry
Hayley CoventryPiano Tutor
Hayley has been playing piano for over 20 years and has over 5 years teaching experience both in music schools as well as privately. Her students age range has been from four years to adult and complete beginner to advanced.
She is friendly, confident and versatile as a teacher and holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Kingston University and has most recently completed her teacher training qualification (PGCE) in Secondary Music.

Hayley has performed both as a soloist and within ensembles, including a trip to Germany with a Big Band and pit band work for local musicals.

A classically trained pianist, Hayley has taken ABRSM piano examinations to grade 8. She has a comprehensive knowledge of a variety of music styles and in addition to teaching predominantly classical piano is able to teach the basics of jazz and contemporary styles.

Rachael Jarrett
Rachael JarrettDrum Tutor
Rachel has enjoyed listening to music for as long as she can remember. The first two instruments that she tried were acoustic guitar and keyboard, strangely both fizzled out of her life but not music, she continued to listen……and sing along!

During her early teens Rachel hit a snare drum during a music lesson at school and that was it, her journey had begun. All she wanted to do was to play drums and to be around anything drum related!

Rachel gained much experience by travelling with her mentor to various drumming events and clubs, from performance to setting up and stripping down kits and it was around then that she began to teach.

It was at this point Rachel joined her first band and frequently started gigging at various youth events, along with continuing to teach in Peterborough.

When Rachel was in her final year of secondary school, she, under her own initiative started to visit schools in the area that weren’t offering drum tuition. She created a format for an assembly to introduce drumming to the students and offered tuition for the following term, it was a success.

From here she went on to teach at 11 schools, and has seen many of her students go on to have successful careers in the music industry, tours, and recording with popular bands such as Mallory Knox.

Staying with the music theme, she worked for Fiddlestix and Ely Music shops for stints between 1998 and 2001

Rachel continued teaching in schools, and from students’ homes, but later got her own studio which to work and teach from, plus her seasonal gig work at holiday parks, cruise ships and playing at several corporate events.

Ash Powell
Ash PowellDrum Tutor
After picking up his first pair of sticks at the age of eleven, the drums have been at the forefront of Ash’s educational, professional and social life for the past twelve years. From the age eleven until eighteen he was completely self-taught on the drums, learning through listening and playing along to his favourite bands. Playing the drums became more than just a hobby, it was a potential career, so to fulfil this he attended, and graduated from the British and Irish Modern Music Institute (BIMM) in 2016 with a degree in Professional Musicianship, and in 2017 he completed a one-year Post-Graduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning.

As a busy freelance professional drummer, Ash has gained a wealth of experience playing with numerous artists and bands across the country, embarking on professional tours up and down the United Kingdom and playing some of the countries most prestigious music venues. He has also had the honour of recording with some of the music industries most recognised producers and at some of the top recording studios in the United Kingdom.

Ash is a passionate educator, who ensures that all lessons are beneficial, challenging and most of all enjoyable for students.

Max Mickels
Max MickelsVocal Tutor
Maz, aka ‘Molly’ first entered the world of music when she was given a violin for her fifth birthday. As a regular on the Medway folk scene, she started playing with local musicians and performing at folk events such as the Rochester Sweeps Festival, and later with Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.

When it came to music she always leaned towards the rockier end of the scale, so she commissioned a custom electro-acoustic violin, and started playing for local rock bands. It was here that she discovered her voice doing backing vocals in an all-female rock band, as well as playing the violin.

Maz’s passion turned to singing, and her love of ‘story telling’ and acting led her to enrol at the prestigious London School of Musical Theatre. She performed at the Edinburgh Festival in 2006 and in Michael Bruce’s original musical Hey Diddle Diddle.

After this Maz became a regular on the cabaret circuit where she was given the opportunity to sing at the infamous Madam JoJo’s and perform an original cabaret as part of Decadence Production Co.

Later, she met fellow musician Martin Mickels and in 2010, they started gigging together around the Surrey music scene, and happily for us, came to join our team here at Idol Hands, where she continues to teach vocals and performance.

In March 2014, she and Martin created duo Moonshine & Molly, allowing them to combine their shared love of blues, rock and folk music, with Molly’s passion for cabaret and the theatrical, to create a unique entertainment experience.

They regularly gig throughout the county and recently released their debut album Timeline, which is available to buy via their website.

Maz is also currently gigging with all-girl group The Lovettes, which takes her all over the UK, plus duo’s Manhattan & Molly, and The Whiskey Sours.

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