As meteoric rises go - Gareth Ashton's takes some beating. Born and bred in Derbyshire, he had always been a keen drummer, like his father and in 1977 discovered the joys of punk via The Jam's performance on Top Of The Pops. Within weeks he was forming his own band The Ruin and within months he was playing on the same bill as punk trendsetters The Damned on a nationwide tour and living the dream with the short-lived The Irritators. After gigs in Sheffield, Edinburgh, Dundee and Manchester Gareth went on to pursue other musical goals but never quite hit those heights again. Nonetheless he drummed successfully all over the UK for over two decades playing everything from jazz-funk to country & western. Now retired, Gareth reflects on the lot of a semi-professional musician, a world away from the gilded lives of rock stars and their entourages.