Jive Aces Peter Howell, Swinging to the Beat of a Different Drum

The heart and soul of the rhythm of the Jive Aces, Peter Howell can’t imagine having a better life than he has today. His video is one of 200 “Meet a Scientologist” videos available on the Scientology website at

The mere thought of talking to someone new used to send a chill down Peter Howell’s spine. Now the drummer of the Jive Aces, the UK’s No. 1 swing and jive band, books 300 gigs a year for the group without batting an eye. To find out what changed, read on.

It all began when Howell, now 46, was still in his teens. He fell hopelessly in love—with New Orleans Dixieland jazz, swing and blues. Naturally he did what any young man would do under these circumstances.

“I threw together a homemade kit from a broken chair, a washtub and a biscuit tin,” say Howell. “After a year of messing around learning drums in my bedroom, I joined a swing band with my friend Ian Clarkson who sang, played guitar and was learning to play trumpet. My love of music was a lot stronger than my drumming back then.”

He and Clarkson and two other mates from school, Ken Smith and John Fordham, honed their music and developed their zany style through the mid-1980s. After several permutations and name changes, in January 1989 they performed for the first time as the Jive Aces.

“Ian was always looking for spiritual answers,” says Howell, “while I was a bit cynical. When he started talking about Dianetics, I thought ‘let’s see.’ But I've always liked books, so I began reading Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health and I couldn't put it down. I thought ‘if this works like it says in the book, this is it.’”

Howell went straight to the Church of Scientology of London for a Dianetics counseling session in which he discovered a heavy loss he had suffered but had totally forgotten, although it had continued to affect him terribly ever since. After that session, it never affected him again.

Howell carried on with his study and practice of Dianetics and Scientology and overcame the problem that was cutting across every aspect of his life including his success as a musician, his social life and his self-esteem.

“I was painfully shy,” he says. “Dianetics and Scientology counseling and training helped me overcome this completely. I have a successful career, I’ve been happily married for 15 years and I have a great relationship with my family.

“I really love being onstage and playing the drums,” says Howell. “I get to travel the world playing music and making friends. I could say it doesn’t get much better than this, except from my experience with the Jive Aces, it always does.”

The popular “Meet a Scientologist” profiles on the Church of Scientology International Video Channel at now total 200 broadcast-quality documentary videos featuring Scientologists from diverse locations and walks of life. The personal stories are told by Scientologists who are educators, teenagers, skydivers, a golf instructor, a hip-hop dancer, IT manager, stunt pilot, mothers, fathers, dentists, photographers, actors, musicians, fashion designers, engineers, students, business owners and more.

A digital pioneer and leader in the online religious community, in April 2008 the Church of Scientology became the first major religion to launch its own official YouTube Video Channel, which has now been viewed by millions of visitors.