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Home Forums Midi Songs Dr. James Pitt-Payne - bio
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 Subject :Dr. James Pitt-Payne - bio..
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drjames
R_COOL
Joined: 2009-02-26 23:45:46
Posts: 524
Location: London UK
 
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Dr. James Pitt-Payne
b. Saturday 16 August 1947, Beckenham, Kent, UK

There comes a time when folks ask who is he and where did he come from...

James Pitt-Payne was born at the Woodcote Nursing Home on 16 August 1947, the younger son of
Dr. Frank Pitt-Payne (1913-1986) and Barbara Pitt-Payne (1913-1997), née Guise.

His father and his grandfather (Dr. William Pitt-Payne) before him were doctors. His mother was a nurse.

Education started at The Knoll Pre-Preparatory School in 1951, then to Bickley Hall School
in 1955, and onwards to Epsom College in 1960. A Scholarship to Guy's Hospital, London, and
then to medical qualifications in 1970 and 1971. Then followed Private General Medical Practice
until retirement due to ill-health on 1st January 2004.

These are the bare bones so far. And he packed a lot in between.

In 1950 he stayed a week with Mrs. Olive Brockwell, the real-life nanny to the Milne Family and
their famous son, Christopher Robin. Judged too grubby to handle the priceless first editions of
A. A. Milne, he was allowed to watch as Mrs. Brockwell turned the pages and informed him that
whereas Christopher Robin was a very good boy, James, on the other hand, was not a good boy.
Baffling enough for a 3 year old to be told such things, the aversion to Christopher Robin persists
to this day. There was, without doubt, a heffalump in her hundred acre wood....

The peculiar emphasis placed on cleaning one's teeth regularly was another mystery to be
understood, if not over come. Dismissed from the dental surgery at age 7 as being a boy who did
not clean his teeth - and thus in disgrace - he now sports a splendid set of dentures thus depriving
dentists of his company for ever more....

Yet, on that never-to-be-forgotten day when he pointed at the proprietor of a hotel in Devon and
told him that he had dirty teeth, this was considered way beyond the pail, and so he was hushed up
for much of the time.

Mothers were considered detrimental to a boy's well being; best to send them away to school as soon
as possible where they would be safe from the cloying influence of a mother's love - and so: off to
boarding school age 10.

Mentioning the Facts of Life would have been helpful, yet they passed James by as each parent assumed
the other had done it - thus he arrived at his senior school to a world of rampant homosexual activity
which can only be wondered at.

In such a turmoil are the seeds of anarchy sewn. Schoolmasters seemed like men amongst children yet
children amongst men - and there were the rules. A seasoned onlooker with half an ounce of common
sense would have spotted that James was very introverted and highly intuitive and the educational
process designed, as it was, to 'lead out' effectively shut him out. And school was a time of the
deepest unhappiness.

There was constant talk of 'House Spirit' and working as a team; something that defied understanding
for him. And the beatings - which were still legal then did little good except to further entrench
his general disbelief that any sense would ever prevail.

Children, they say, adapt to their circumstances. James chose music. He found a trumpet, had lessons
and became Principal trumpet within a year and played under Paul Beard FRAM for four years whilst
still at school. Visiting lecturers included James Blades FRAM, percussionist, Jack Brymer FRAM,
clarinettist and Leon Goosens FRAM, Oboist. He became Head Chorister in the College Choir and got
that blue riband of the Royal School of Church Music for singing tenor and bass.

He came first in the Army Proficiency Examination for the Combined Cadet Force yet never rose above
the rank of Lance Corporal. Firing a blank .303 round at the Maths Master at Army Camp may have
blighted a fledgling Army Career but the man was a little twat anyway. Last Posts and Reveilles
presented no problem in those days and at least one played them alone.

The Medical Career was rather expected of one. Yet at 19 he was taking singing lessons with
Gwen Massey, sometime accompanist to Heddle Nash, the golden voice of song in the nineteen-thirties.
Public performances and a medal for coming first in 1969 at the Bromley Music Festival - big deal.
...in 1971 an encore every night for singing a song out loud to a delighted audience at the Resident's
Play, a feature of hospital life in the good old days of the NHS.

A Student Politician he became, President of the Student Medical Education Committee with 550
students, whose views he took to the Dean once a month. It was 1968 and the Todd Report was just
out. Much to discuss and the Royal College of General Practitioners co-opted him onto the south-east
England Faculty of the RCGP where he was able to see the future of the medical profession stretching
out before him. It was not a very good view to get for a 20 year old med. student but there would be
just enough time to enjoy the golden days of Medical Practice before the shutters started to come
down in the late-nineties.

"He was too clever by three-quarters" said one orthopaedic surgeon - in retrospect; James would have
been happy with a "half." Yet they made him Treasurer of the Guy's Hospital Residents in 1970 and
under his guidance the books went £1,700 into the red, the Residents Bar had to be shut and James
went off to New Cross Hospital for 3 months of Breast and Plastic Surgery. His first house job was
with the legendary Sir Hedley Atkins, the second with Dr. William Mann, Physician to Her Majesty.
Willie Mann offered James the Resident Medical Officer's job at King Edward VIII Hospital for

officers, which would have been a step up the ladder. The thought of titular personages rather
horrified James and he had already been head-hunted for a gynaecology and obstetric job at what is
now the Princess Royal University Hospital, Farnborough. In 1970, he was a member of the pioneering
kidney transplant team. "I was in charge of the crushed ice machine," he says.

"I called 'em the jaws of hell," he declared when asked about the job.
"Taking a cervical smear is no way to treat a lady," he'd say - and marriage to Jacqui Cray would not
take place until he had finished that job. Over 100 forceps deliveries, 11 sets of twins and the
oversight of some 1,200 babies being born a few of which he caught as the student nurse could not
get her gloves on in time.

"I never forget taking Jacqui to meet my people for the first time...." Yes - a shock for his mother,
a tall statuesque blonde who drank gin and smoked cigarettes. "I wouldn't say she was beautiful,"
announced his mother, "striking yes...."

Two sons, Charles in 1973 and William in 1974.

"You'll never be a concert pianist...." she'd muse, "but you can entertain...." Talk about damning
a fellah with faint praise. Ah well, it certainly shaped him and the music lay dormant for years
until both parents had gone.

"The first 20 years as a GP were very difficult..." Well, yes - to be a GP or any kind of doctor
takes a certain something instilled in the background. When it isn't there then it's like trying
to steer a boat without a rudder. By the time he was 30 he could not really tread water any more.
And then started the next bit, the analysis.

"Eight years of that....." Maybe he got in touch with himself a bit more; hard to tell. But then
he started writing. Two textbooks of psychology, two trilogies and seven novels - all unpublished.
Lecturer to the Teilhard Centre for the Future of man in 1985 and to The Guild of Pastoral Psychology
in 1990. An attempt to enter the priesthood - Ha! His vocation was found to be wanting. Better to
serve the community as he had done to date.

But he began to see the pattern, the cobbler with holes in his shoes, the accountant whose personal
affairs were in tatters, the Hi-fi man with only the cheapest tranny in the bathroom - and the
priest - ye gods - mostly spiritually screwed up - and he had discovered how to help them on their
way.

In the nineties life seemed ever more challenging because of what he was having to see and do with
his clients. He took on cases that had been shunned everywhere else. And he dived deep, stayed down
longer, and came up dirtier than most.

In music he found order which was a perfect foil for what he was doing, and, as his health nose
dived, it was to music that he turned for solace and inspiration. With the advent of the PC he saw
a way of performing without having to appear in public. Doug Grierson, it was, who said that he'd
get on well with MIDI. Never did he speak a truer word.

What appears on these pages is a testament to that opinion which he has probably forgotten but it
is the reason that Doug Grierson is credited with every file James has ever done.

"No one wants a sick doctor...." James sensed this. The diabetes started in 1993, then the blood
pressure, then the stroke in 2001, with numerous operations, sub-acute combined degeneration of the
cord, a post-op collapse and near-death experience, gout, arthritis - and inevitably the
General Medical Council, a consummate crowd of arseholes, who signed him off in 2004 four months
after he had retired already, my life.......

From 1997-2004 James kept some strange company. Trance Mediums, psychics, spiritualists and the
like. Like every experience he has ever had, this one was just as formative.
"I could tell you things," he begins, "but I won't.........." he lapses into silence - and
chuckles.

Postscript....
I asked Benny G to set up this page last year because I wasn't at all sure how long I'd got. I
wanted to leave something behind. Each day there is a little more - long may it continue...... Ed.

I wrote all that 4 years ago back in 2005 and this website has become larger and larger. My main helpers now are Veda Meyer-Castens and Bob Heuman aka RsH - and they do what they can to keep me in order, keep me reasonably well informed and point me towards things I haven't done yet...

I am much in the debt of Ben Grierson for setting this latest edition of the site up and to his Dad, Douglas Grierson and Simon Grierson too with whom I joust on Facebook which I commend to you all most highly.

Contrary to what they may say on the media, I find nothing detrimental to my mental well-being going on there and it is a great place to post things and generally join in with the community.

Happy listening to those who like to listen. I will always welcome any constructive ideas and I do do requests but only if you send me the music as jpegs and formatted at 160d.p.i Cool

Warm Regards and Love to you all

James Cool

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