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Simon Ward2024-01-31T01:17:07+00:00

About Me

MUSICIAN & WEB DEVELOPER

Simon Ward I am Simon Ward.

I am a father to 2 amazing sons. I’m also a guitarist, bassist, pianist, singer and web developer.

The reason for this website is both personal and business and I hope to help people with guides and blogs that I write and also share my photos, videos and life experiences with family, friends and anyone else who is interested in the things I do. I don’t do social media, I deleted my Facebook account many years ago and never got along with Twitters’ shadow bans and censorship.

I started playing guitar when I was 8 years old, learning on a child sized sunburst acoustic guitar. My dad dabbled with guitars and knew how to play bar chords, the same shaped chord along the entire fret board. He had a brown Hondo electric guitar with black stripes running down it. I managed to take ownership of the guitar and eventually part exchange it for a Marlin slammer followed by an Aria Pro II Semi Acoustic and eventually a 1992 Fender Stratocaster Mexico, which I have in storage.

I started gigging when I was around 14 with another guitarist and pianist, recording in a collage studio and doing some gigs in pubs. At 16 I did some solo gigs, cassette tapes for the backing and a basic PA system for the guitar and mic. I formed a band around that time called Quench and we did a lot of gigs with a lot of different line-ups. In 1998 we recorded the track “One More Drop” for the mixed Wirral Bands album “Tramspotting”. We did a couple of radio interviews and got into the local newspapers, it didn’t go any further. 1998 was also the year I decided to quit the UK and move to Fuerteventura.

I took my guitars to Fuerteventura and ended up hosting karaoke and doing some solo gigs. Through hosting karaoke I managed to save some money and buy a couple of PA systems. I formed a small agency, getting gigs in bars and sending out karaoke hosts and singers, taking a small cut of the entertainers wage. I met some amazing people during the first couple of years in Fuerteventura, one of those became my best mate, Scottish Bob. We formed a duo, he was a fantastic singer and rhythm guitarist and knew how to make the audience laugh. We did a lot of gigs together and enjoyed every single one of them. He would also sing a couple of songs in a band I was playing in. They were great times. Unfortunately, Bob died of a brain aneurysm around 14 years after we met. I haven’t really done much music since but continue to dabble with Garage Band, my guitars and piano.

The web development started for me back in 2004 before the internet was in every home and on every phone. It was the time when AOL was the main homepage and everyone was using Ask Jeeves as the main search engine. Google was very basic and Facebook hadn’t been heard of.

I had a PC and an internet connection and started to build very basic websites. In the first year, I had built an analytics website to monitor website visitor traffic and a basic chat site with text chat rooms, running on the Tufat Flash Chat script. I wanted to build a homepage that people would use to send messages to their family and friends, check the weather and news and browse the internet. I had the idea for what Google is today before Google implemented any of these features but I didn’t have the brains to put it together.

At the end of 2004, I was sat at my PC and my housemate, Kev, was sat at his PC. He shouted over to me “Simon, you do know there’s like 20 people chatting in your chat room?”. I honestly didn’t know, the chat site was something I hadn’t touched for months. I went into it and surely enough there was 25 to 30 people chatting. I asked who was who and asked if anyone would like to be a moderator. The woman with the chat handle “Izzy” volunteered, so I gave her access to the admin panel of the chat.

I began to work on the chat site and in 2005 added video chat rooms followed by a full blown social network. MySpace was the only real competitor at the time but didn’t have video chat rooms. Facebook wasn’t heard of, although formed in 2004, I had no idea of its existence. There were some other chat sites, I remember one being 2020chat, they would copy a lot of what I did and cause “chat wars”. Eventually, having the social network and video chat rooms, it became a completely different niche. In 2007 I added Adsense and in 2010 my earnings peaked at around €6,000 a month for the one site alone. I also owned a lot of other websites and was able to live the life many dream of.

I visited my sister in Australia for a couple of months and spent 6 weeks on the Gold Coast. I also went to a couple of other places, including Salou and Prague. I met my wife on the social network and flew over to USA to meet her. We took a road trip from Illinois to California, didn’t like California so all the way to Florida, which we both liked a lot. I was supposed to meet her mother back in Illinois for Christmas and New Year, but instead I bought flights to Jamaica, so we went there instead for weeks followed by Florida and back to Fuerteventura.

In 2012, Facebook was taking over the social networking niche and Google decided to bring out their own social network, Google Hangouts. It was around that time that Google removed thousands of similar sites from their search, including mine. That was the end of my social network and the lifestyle I had. It was back to music and building websites. I am now a full time web developer with a portfolio of over 20 websites, hosting clients websites, building websites for clients and doing various freelance jobs in the development area.

Some Of My Songs

SIMON WARD & QUENCH

These tracks are from many years ago, the last one being 1998. The quality isn’t very good as they were taken from cassette recordings. I am singing and playing rhythm guitar on all of them. The other musicians are various lineups of the band Quench, Rob, Nathan, Steff, Nikki and Steve.

One More Drop (1998)

One More Drop (1994)

Never Did You Ever (1994)

Never Did You Ever (2023)

Maryjane (1994)

Recent Websites I’ve Built

• WEBSITES •

FREE TOOLS

SOME FREE TOOLS I FIND USEFUL FOR WEB DESIGN

FREE GUIDES

SOME FREE GUIDES I HAVE WRITTEN THAT MAY BE OF HELP

My Services

I have worked online since 2002. I am a freelance web developer with a lot of experience, contacts and the tools to develop high quality professional websites. Check out some of my services below.

Services