Bukem’s first introduction to music, like so many others, was through piano lessons as a child. Unlike many however, the young pianist turned out to possess a natural talent and he quickly moved through the piano grades. Classical music represented the soundtrack to his home life. Both parents having a passion for Rachmaninov and Tchaikovsky that rubbed off on their son. However it was when the family moved to Watford and Bukem changed music teachers that he developed his first true musical love. Thanks to a progressively minded teacher – Nigel Crouch – he was then introduced to the world of jazz fusion, a style which has informed his work ever since.