Introducing "Capt Bruce"
Rob says we need to work on my happy face
When I asked Rob to guide me on some bass fishing ten years ago I got on well with him immediately as he has such a good attitude to his fishing. A combination of art, craft and single minded determination, always experimenting- he’s the maverick cop of the sea. If you’re on a charter at anchor fishing whole squid for rays, he’ll be bouncing a rubber eel downtide- he’ll probably pull out a ray too. He’s unemployable obviously, and If rock n roll is about living life on your own terms, then he epitomises that more than all my music industry mates put together.
I’ve made it my business to fish with some of the best anglers in the UK and always learned in the process, but Rob is a one off. It’s the spirit of adventure and fun that prevails, and I think that’s why he has guided people from all backgrounds and walks of life. Let’s face it, some boat angling trips or shore matches can have a macho ‘rugby club outing’ feel to them- not everyone’s cup of tea. Rob has played an important role in providing fishing that is completely inclusive.
On my way to winning the 6th All England squid championships in 2013
Rob, and to a lesser extent me, have caught some good bass, several doubles from the shore for Rob for example, but we both share a joy in a wide variety of fishing that goes beyond the sometimes dour and joyless pursuit of specimen fish. Our days are about being in the great outdoors, enjoying the scenery, bird life, and surprises that the sea throws our way. I’d rather catch a surprise topknot, lumpsucker, guilthead bream or red mullet on a lure than a big bass…but I’m thankful for whatever comes along.
I think that’s the way modern fishing is - now we’ve put down the big rods and put aside the bait, we realise what we’ve been missing. Some people have suggested that the inshore fishing is ‘hammered’ and our little boat will be further ruination of the bass fishing. But they miss the point. 99% of our bass go back, and there’s always those tiny corners, micro reefs, small wrecks and the nooks and crannies closer inshore that nobody fishes. Rob and I have the chance to explore and map those areas out for years to come… there’s quite a bit of sea to go at in our 3 mile limit and whole lot of different fish yet to be targeted on lures. I doubt we’ll be more than half a mile out for nearly all our fishing…
I've always admired bass...
Rob and I both enjoy writing and story telling- we have a shared view of fishing as an entertainment and distraction from the frantic pace of modern corporate life, that so many have to endure. I know how I used to check into his old online diary in stolen moments in the office dreaming of the weekend when I could get out and fish. I was one of those people and I loved the honesty - the blanks and frustrations described in as much detail as the moments of triumph, and this I think has given me the confidence to tell my own story as I learn and gain experience on the helm of BIF1 and you’ll hear all about it in my posts
One of my ambitions is to help anglers who suffer from sea sickness get afloat. I’ve suffered badly all my life and can say with some degree of certainty that I have it cracked now. So let me help with that, and if you still get ill, no bother, we’re so close to shore we can just nip back n..
Skippering Sea Angler journalist Dave Lewis on board my old boat "Pig Dog"
A bit about me...
I grew up in Scarborough on the north east coast, and I spent my childhood sitting on the pier hoiking out coalfish and dabs, and small brown trout in a little stream. I got into playing guitar at 14 and fairly soon was in band called Little Angels. Back in the late 80’s /early 90’s we had several top forty hits and a number 1 album in 1993, touring with Bon Jovi, ZZ top Van Halen, Aerosmith Guns n Roses etc Good times, and quite debauched too in an innocent kind of way.. But then along came Kurt Cobain with Nirvana to spoil the fun and made a record so great it made the hair metal scene look pretty silly. So we were out fashion and out of a record deal and I found myself living on the banks of the river Wey near Guildford, looking into the water wondering if there were any fish in it. Out of the cupboard came the dusty fishing rod, in went the guitar, and I caught a good pike within a few casts. I regressed to that childhood state of total excitement and focus on the moment and since that day, music has come and gone throughout my life, but fishing is a constant.
I moved to Brighton to set up a music college called Brighton Institute of Modern Music in 2001 and. Although I sold my shares in that college in 2012 my life continues to be a mixture of rock n roll, fishing and music education. I have a patient, kind, beautiful and funny wife and three kids: 8, 18 and 19.