Our story

Our founder Richard Pendlebury first started taking his guitar into Bristol prison in 1987 and was amazed at the difference learning and playing music together made to people’s life chances.

In 1997 our project was formalised and funds were raised to buy equipment and instruments for the work in Bristol prison. Groups started meeting regularly, led by Richard Pendlebury and Adam Kishtainy. The project slowly grew to include new prisons, starting with Shepton Mallet, and we were granted charitable status in the year 2000 to carry on our work. By the year 2005 we were in six prisons, and by 2013 we were in 13 prisons.

In 2017 - 30 years after our first sessions in Bristol prison - Changing Tunes has skilled Musicians-in-Residence based in a growing network of prisons and community hubs across the UK. This growth has included the formal establishment of the Midlands region of Changing Tunes, appointing a board of trustees and new musicians in residence, with a view to expanding our work in the Midlands region.

In 2018 we are now working in 4 prisons in the West Midlands, providing sessional music and mentoring services.


Phil Jackman: Chair Graham Stewart: Treasurer James Thorne: Trustee


Staff: Musicians-In-Residence


David Cefai

Musician-In-Residence, HMP Brinsford and HMP Featherstone

David’s work in music has taken him across the world, to the USA, Aus, NZ, Europe and UK; performing and recording as solo artist, reggae band guitarist and afrobeat band leader. Music education has always run in parallel with his professional music career, taking many forms from peripatetic teaching to leading whole band/orchestra workshops on performance, composition and improvisation. Inspired by those he has played with and taught, David’s passion in music is for it to be available to people of all backgrounds and abilities, to allow music to be a source of positive motivation and self-expression.

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Matt Newell

Musician-In-Residence, HMP Hewell and HMP Stafford ( In training)

An aspiring musician, music teacher and music producer, Matt is driven by an absolute passion for music and the very real impact music can have in the world. As a writer Matt’s focus is on trying to make a positive difference, a voice for those often unheard. In his teaching the same rings true. In addition to peripatetic music classes in singing, drumming, song writing and music theory, Matt has been heavily involved with community music projects. He has found that music can have an amazing impact on people’s lives and has seen some dramatic transformations thanks to these projects. Changing Tunes Midlands is another huge opportunity for music to change people’s lives and one that he is extremely excited to get stuck into.

Staff: Business Development and Operations

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Dave Perryman

Business Development and Operations Manager

Dave has a background originally in Construction as an electrical contractor, having moved into IT management around 15 years ago he’s been working in Operational IT Management and Business Management covering many aspects, including IT operations and delivery of services to business development, CRM and Marketing functions. He specialises in Business Process change and Service Delivery and has a broad knowledge of business management from Quality control processes, staff management and outcomes management, including ITIL, ISO9001 and Prince2 project management.

He also has an alternate career as a semi professional musician having been playing in bands, church and duos since he was a teenager. Having a keen interest in music and its effects on people’s mental attitudes led him to Changing Tunes Midlands around 3 years ago. He helped launch the Board of Trustees becoming Treasurer and acting as initial contact with Changing Tunes in Bristol to setup the Changing Tunes Model in the Midlands Region. Having supported this process there was opportunity to break new ground in expanding the service and he has now resigned from the Board and taken up a post as Business Development and Operations Manager for CTM.

His role includes liaison and expansion of the CTM services to HMP sites across the Midlands regions, as well as fund raising and delivery of the operational support to our Musicians-In-Residence. His faith in God is an inspiration to him providing a vision and calling to deliver new services with a passion into the lives of people in prison.