"I began tapping out three chord songs on the piano when I was five or six - half a dozen decades on, I am still tapping them out, but use more chords."
These songs were written and recorded in 1984 and 1985 and recorded by Woolley on a Tascam four track in an 18th Century attic flat. His neighbour on the ground floor of Hawthorn House, Chapel Allerton, Leeds, was former Red Ladder Theatre colleague (and established singer and actress) Elizabeth Mansfield.
Music was Richard Woolley's first love – whether pop, rock, classical or jazz. At school, he played oboe in the orchestra, electric guitar in a rock band and saxophone in a jazz combo. But apart from in the seventies, when composing and performing with Red Ladder Theatre, music has not been a professional activity.
It might have been: his school band, the Voodoo Strutters (see photo), was offered a contract by the managers of the Honeycombs and a tour as backing band for Chuck Berry; and, as late as 1989, after his last rock performance at a film festival in Finland, an Estonian impresario offered to make him a star!
But if not a profession, it was and always will be a preferred form of emotional expression, a way of logging feelings more instantly than prose or film.