This is a true story.

Daniel Ogden-Travis was born in the summer of 1987 at a small hospital in Christchurch, New Zealand. However, his birth certificate wasn’t signed immediately, nor even soon. And two months later his father, on a whim, named him Chester Sebation Ogden-Travis, not only misspelling his middle name, but changing his first altogether. His mother would find out later that evening.

In years to come, Chester would learn to write. Penning his way into several gold stars at primary school, his sally into secondary school writing would see him winning prizes of a more coveted nature. Here he would stage his own plays, and use winning words to talk him out of many fights with the school bully, Russian exchange student, Yakov.

At fourteen, he was whisked away across the seas for upwards of a year. He travelled with his family through most of Europe and a division of Africa. Missing the family piano, and marooned on a barge in very rural France, Chester would ride his hired bike into the sprawling vineyards, sitting there for hour upon hour. It was here he learned to play guitar. Later he would release several EPs and play shows up and down the country, being compared by treasured local paper The Press to “Chris Martin, on a sad day.” Taking these encouraging words, he would go on to score multiple short films and a full length documentary.

Studying Fine Arts at the University of Canterbury, and majoring in Film, Chester further developed his interest in storytelling. Over the years he produced a series of films and animations, while actively taking part in the campus theatre society. Subsequently, in 2008, Chester received funding to write and produce a full length play. An Evening With Paul and Chester sold out three consecutive nights at Christchurch’s Great Hall and spawned a variety of tee shirts and bumper stickers. Following this, he packed up his belongings and set off into the world. This time alone.

With London came an impressive reach of travelling opportunities, a reach not squandered in his four years there. Each travelled country bred new stories, articles and writing projects and in Peru he wrote his first children’s story, The Moustachio’d Boy.

In recent months, Chester has been completing a television pilot, How To Be Gay, written and filmed last year. He is also preparing his first fringe show, Reporter, to be staged at the 2013 Edinburgh festival.


June 18th, 2009 + 5:06 AM  ·  EducatedGuess

Hi everyone,

I cannot believe how long it's been since I posted anything on here. So i thought I'd give you a quick update on what I'm doing etc, as if anyone really cares, but still - venting process and all that.

I've been living in London for almost a year and a half now. I managed, almost immediately, to land a pretty amazing job in a guitar store over here called Hanks. For those of you unfamiliar with Hanks, it's probably in the top 5 acoustic guitar shops in the world. I'd heard of it even back in NZ. Only about 5 people work here and almost every day I serve, deweyeyed, some kind of musical hero or film star extraordinaire. The shop is on Denmark street in London. Nearly every shop on this street is a music shop. Before they were music shops they were publishing houses. Before that they were music studios. Studios where the Rolling Stones recorded their first album, Hendrix, the Beatles, you name it. the Sex Pistols squatted at number 14 or something. It's packed to the rafters with intense history. Pretty preeeetty cool.

Other than that I have been doing NOTHING. Probably played 20 gigs since I arrived. Done very little traveling too. In saying that, I'm off to climb Machu Picchu in Peru in 8 days. Pretty exciting, but it also means I've spent the most amount of money possible on tramping gear i will probably never use again. So someone invite me on another whirlwind trek somewhere else in  the world. I arrive in Santiago first and had planned in my head to meet up with Izsil, but of course he's in Australia and we will JUST miss each other.

In my last blog many years ago I noticed I mentioned $20,000 to make an album. In the end, as it was from a modest couple, I decided not to take it. I only used a wee bit to make that EP, that's all paid back now anyway. So I'm saving on my own now to record my first full length album. Saved about £3000 so far. My ideal would be to somehow convince (in this order) either Jon Brion, Ethan Johns, Nigel Godrich or Tchad Blake to produce my album. It'll never happen, but surely a man can dream.

Actually - I'm aware it sounds exceptionally self involved, but would be a massive help - if you have any thoughts on what would be good album tracks, if you could tell me, then I could compile a median of the songs that will most likely work in an album context. I'm so concerned with it having a flow and a sound of its own. Restricted amounts of instruments used, sparse production values etc.

On another note, here's a video of Where The Problematic Play from this concert I did at the end of 2007:

I wish Bandamp chat would start swinging again! I keep entering a void of emptiness.

- Chester


February 10th, 2007 + 8:02 PM  ·  EducatedGuess

Hey everyone! Sorry I've been so absent lately.

The reason? Well recently I received $20,000 funding to press a proper EP and then make an album. $2000 has been dedicated to the EP and the rest to the album.

So I've been hectically busy, I've had quite a lot of other stuff on too. But basically I'm recording this EP in a week. It's called '7'. Because it will have 7 tracks on it, there will be the song 'seven' on the proceeding album and because I was born in the 7th month of 1987. I'm recording 11 tracks because I can't for the life of me decide on which 7 tracks to record and have mastered. So I'm going to record 11 and then choose from there. All 11 tracks are totally new, seven piano ones and four guitar. They are all VERY different from one another. The recordings will features vocals, piano, guitar, electric guitar, electric bass, violin, cello and trombone.

It will be finished in a month and the first pressing will be of 500 cds. The packaging is going to be really cool if it works. Basically there's this process called "flocking". What it is is millions of fibers attached to something to it gives a velvety effect. Like the inside of jewelry boxes. It's going to be a jet black cardboard case (think the jack johnson albums) the a flocked black 7 on the front. So you won't really be able to see it till you hold it up to light or feel it.

I'm going to sell it for $20NZD which works out including postage at about $15USD or £8UK. And I'm going to sell it at gigs, CD stores in NZ and online.

So wish me luck guys! Thanks for everything!!! And I'll put up the songs that don't make it onto the EP on bandamp

- Chester

Physics - (And free CDs)

August 13th, 2011 + 11:08 AM  ·  EducatedGuess


Just a quick update. I'm in London again after leaving 7 months ago to head back to my hometown of Christchurch, New Zealand. Sadly we had the worst earthquake in the history of the country, hundreds of people died and the city has been destroyed.

Over the past couple of years, my flatmate and friend of most-of-my-life, Paul van Uden and I wrote the scripts for three half hour  TV episodes of a mockumentary called How To Be Gay (more about it here:  I was approached by a documentary film crew from Berlin last year asking me to make the soundtrack for their doco Americans about a reserve in Montana. I struck up a deal with them where I'd do their music and they'd film our show. It's pretty win/win for me, as it means I have a bunch of recordings to do with whatever I please.

So here is what I want to do. I want to press a small EP, maybe 5 tracks, do a run of 1000 and give them to people. Anyone who wants one, could they leave a comment in here, and I'll send you a couple in 2 or 3 months when its done. One for you, and one to give to a friend not affiliated with bandamp. It's a bit of an experiment to see how far it comes back.

Thanks for all the support over the years. I've been so dormant with music lately, it's good to get back into the swing of things.

Love Chester.

Jam Session 21st Jan

February 5th, 2011 + 7:02 PM  ·  EducatedGuess

A bunch of us have been getting together in weird places, baches on the coast, old shipping containers, boats, caves etc and setting up recording gear and jamming over the space of a few days each time. This is one of the jams!


February 2nd, 2011 + 11:02 PM  ·  EducatedGuess

Hey guys,

I tried to load this up a couple of months ago, but didn't realise Bandamp doesn't take MP4s.

So here's a rough mix unmastered track I did for a documentary based on a reserve in Montana. You can see the trailer here:;americans.html.

- Chester

First Song

August 4th, 2010 + 1:08 PM  ·  EducatedGuess

Hey guys,

Here's one of the tracks I'm working on for this American documentary. It's nowhere near finished. But I thought I'd show you what I'm up to.

- Chester


March 9th, 2008 + 6:03 PM  ·  EducatedGuess

Hey hey!!!

How's it goin' ya'll? I'm just about to embark on a bit of a world trip, do some work, meet people, go to lots of gigs etc. I'm leaving for london in 3 weeks and I'm there for about 5 months, then I'm onto New York for a month or so, and then Canada for a wee while.

Do any of you bandampfamily members live in these places? Because it'd be awesome to catch up. Being stranded out in NZ has made it virtually impossible to meet any of you guys and come to the gatherings before now.

So yeah, drop me a line if you are?

- Chester
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