You can't beat a day with a top drummer!

PUBLISHED: 11:12 23 March 2006 | UPDATED: 13:20 04 May 2010

Jeff Rich plays while King’s students (from left to right) Sophie Blythe, Tom Vacher, Harry Love, Sophie Emms and Lydia Crussell get some pointers.

Jeff Rich plays while King's students (from left to right) Sophie Blythe, Tom Vacher, Harry Love, Sophie Emms and Lydia Crussell get some pointers.

FORMER Status Quo drummer Jeff Rich had King s School pupils and staff rocking all over the hall when he paid them a visit. The visit coincided with the school s non-uniform day for charity, so 12-year-old Jack Tooth borrowed the Status Quo 1984 tour jac

FORMER Status Quo drummer Jeff Rich had King's School pupils and staff rocking all over the hall when he paid them a visit.

The visit coincided with the school's non-uniform day for charity, so 12-year-old Jack Tooth borrowed the Status Quo 1984 tour jacket his father Tony wore when the band appeared at Milton Keynes in 1984.

Since Jeff left the band - which has had more hit singles than any other band in UK chart history - he has taken his own one-man show to schools all over the UK.

School halls may not be quite as glitzy as the concert halls and arenas he was used to playing at, and he counts his audiences in hundreds rather than thousands.

"But the feedback I get is just brilliant, I love it," he said. "Music and rhythm is essential to life and it should be fun which is what I want to get over to the children."

And he certainly gave the 350 King's Junior School children a morning to remember. He explained the history of percussion and improvised on his drum kit.

But the highlight came when he handed out maracas, wood blocks, sleigh bells and tambourines so that all the children - and many of the teachers - joined him to keep a beat that got faster and faster in a roof-raising finale to the morning.

Camilla Tricker, 11, is learning to play electric guitar and Jeff's visit made a big impression. "He told us he practised two hours after school every day. I thought he was brilliant," she said.

The visit was arranged by the head of King's Junior School, Tony Duncan, who until 2000 was head of Bancroft's Prep School in Essex where Jeff Rich's son and daughter were both pupils.

"Music plays such an important part in the life of King's and we like to give the children the chance to learn about music of all kinds. For them to be able to hear someone of Jeff's stature was very special," said Mr Duncan.

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