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  • Ambassador
  • (7 reviews)
Q
Quinn-Alexander
« Perfect! Excellent first lesson with Simon! We started with an exercise on... More »
Q
Quinn-Alexander
« Perfect! Excellent first lesson with Simon! We started with an exercise on Critical Listening, dissecting the music accompanying the action, where Simon pointed out how the orchestration enhanced the beats of the scene. I communicated with him about the primary area I wanted to explore ahead of time - structure - and we had a comprehensive discussion on the topic, where he shared his wealth of knowledge on the different forms & notable use of each in song & film. I also provided him with a demo ahead of the lesson and during our session he gave me great insight into: what worked, how the piece might develop and what areas of improvement there were - excited to be studying with Simon over the coming weeks! »
£40/h
1st lesson free!
Profile and degree verified
Response Time 1h
Lessons offered by Simon
  • Individual
The lessons will be held
Taught subjects
  • Music Theory
  • Composition
  • Songwriting
  • Jazz Improvisation
  • Orchestration
  • Arranging
Levels
  • All Levels

Composition and production lessons tailored to you by composer/jazz musician in Glasgow ONLINE!

Methodology

My goal is to give the composers I tutor a toolkit of skills to use when composing their music. In lessons we explore the music that inspires them in order to learn how to incorporate techniques in to their own practice. The most important thing for me throughout my music teaching practice is to encourage my students to grow an enthusiasm and enjoyment of music.
For adults, each lesson provides an opportunity to talk about the intent behind your compositions and how well this has been communicated, the process the composition went through and ways to transform your approach and to reflect on your composition practice, aesthetic and how you want to develop your music.
For younger students and beginners, each lesson is an opportunity to make music together, to show and tell, make stories, play instruments, play music games, improvise, learn about music from around the world and to use our imagination to create your own compositions and musical projects.

I tailor lessons to the student with a a balance between enabling the student to commit to their practice by laying out clear goals and expectations, and presenting enjoyable lessons with a laid-back attitude that give full consideration to enabling the student’s enthusiasm for music and sound to grow.

I enjoy working with students who are enthusiastic, whether with the simple goal of enjoying their music or greater aspirations for a career in music (not that the two are mutually exclusive!). I like teaching because it is challenging and requires the teacher to adapt to the student and to kindle their enthusiasm.

Ambassador

One of our best tutors! High-quality profile, qualifications verified and response guaranteed. Simon will plan your first lesson with care.

Experience

I am a composer and musician with over 10 years experience with a BA (hons) in Popular Music. I have composed music for film, theatre, art installations and radio/podcasts and have toured Europe as a jazz bassist. I developed to become the musician I am today by expanding my musicality through teachers, some more typical than others. I am an enthusiastic music educator, applying over 10 years of experience. I have worked with composers at all levels and ages: from 6 year olds writing music for 'Sinbad the Snail', a film starring their pet snail, to an IDM music producer writing their debut album.

simontonermusic.com

Rates

Rate for online lessons : £40/h

Details

Terms and Conditions:
I am currently teaching entirely online and following Musicians Union (MU) guidance how to safely carry out in-person teaching again. If you would be interested in in-person teaching, get in touch and we can discuss whether it would be possible to do so in a socially distanced, safe and practical way and I can carry out a Risk Assessment to MU standards ((concealed information)

If a student can not give a weeks prior notice that they can’t to make it to their lesson then they will be required to pay for the lesson.

Blocks of 5 lessons should be paid in full before the first lesson of that block.

Fully DBS and PVG qualified. With SEND experience.

Lessons offered by Simon
Individual
The lessons will be held
Taught subjects
  • Music Theory
  • Composition
  • Songwriting
  • Jazz Improvisation
  • Orchestration
  • Arranging
Levels
  • All Levels

Simon's CV

Simon Toner - Music Tutor Curriculum Vitae
Bass guitar, Double Bass, Composition/Songwriting, Music Production, Guitar, Beginners Piano/Keyboards & Ukulele.

showreel: simontonermusic.com
____________________________________________________________________________
Qualifications:
BA (Hons) Popular Music Degree. Principal Studies of Composition and Bass
ABRSM Teaching Diploma in Instrumental and Vocal Teaching
National Film & Television School Short Course in Film Composing

(First hand experience of sitting grades)
Grade VIII Bass Guitar (Rock School)
Grade V Music Theory (ABRSM)
Advanced Higher A Music (SQA)

Fully PVG and DBS Qualified
SEND Experience

My teaching specialisms:
Beginners to Advanced:
Bass Guitar
Double Bass
Jazz
Composition/Songwriting
Music Production
Ukulele
Beginners to Intermediate:
Guitar, Piano, Synthesizer, Recorder, Early Years Introduction to Music & Keyboard.

Relevant Experience:
Music Tutor: self employed (Sep 2016 - present)
and contract work which includes:
Blackheath Conservatoire: early years ukulele group (May 2019 - present)
Lamphouse Music School: guitar and ukulele, 1-1 & groups (2017)
Carrickvale Community Centre, Edinburgh Council: afterschool keys/composition/production class in deprived area (2017)
Dollar Academy: bass guitar concert/workshop (October 2017)
Edinburgh Napier University Jazz Summer School: jazz ensemble tutor (July 2016)

Film/Media Composer: Internationally screened, award winning films, commercial work including for Creative Scotland, BBC & top streaming podcasts: “Fat Lot of Good” (2013 - present).

Freelance Bassist: European touring, Tenement Jazz Band shortlisted for Scottish Jazz Award 2019 (2007 - present)

Marketing and Distribution Manager for Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival, Jazz Scotland Ltd. (2015 - 18)
Organiser for Continental Drift Academic Conference, Edinburgh (July 2016 - 17)
Box Office Assistant Edinburgh International Film Festival (2015)

REFERENCES ARE AVAILABLE ON REQUEST -
Kelly Reynolds - Programme & Tuition Manager, Blackheath Conservatoire.

Dr. Haftor Medboe - Associate Professor, Acting Head of Humanities & Culture, Jazz Musician in Residence at Edinburgh Napier University.

Thank you for your time.

7 reviews on Simon
  • 5/5

All our ratings are collected by us and are given in confidence, they correspond to a real experience.
Q
Quinn-Alexander

Perfect! Excellent first lesson with Simon! We started with an exercise on Critical Listening, dissecting the music accompanying the action, where Simon pointed out how the orchestration enhanced the beats of the scene. I communicated with him about the primary area I wanted to explore ahead of time - structure - and we had a comprehensive discussion on the topic, where he shared his wealth of knowledge on the different forms & notable use of each in song & film. I also provided him with a demo ahead of the lesson and during our session he gave me great insight into: what worked, how the piece might develop and what areas of improvement there were - excited to be studying with Simon over the coming weeks!

Simon's response

Quinn-Alexander had really insightful questions to ask and we were able to outline that he can learn from listening to film scores in context with the scene from the film and start thinking about how the music supports the film and also that he can begin trying to score to picture himself. We also identified that there is lots to learn in terms of Production and how he can utilise production concepts like EQ, Compression, Reverb to create different mix aesthetics for his music. Production is a powerful tool for creating the textures and musical concept you want to create. But we also identified how this must also be paired with a solid understanding of the instruments you are writing for and we looked to Samuel Adler's 'Orchestration' to learn more about the specific coloristic effects a composer can ask from a musician in their scores. A great starting lesson as it is obvious Quinn-Alexander is a very enthusiastic student and I look forward to our next lesson.

6 recommendations

J
John

Very approachable as a teacher, good communication skills and is at ease with pupils of all abilities; very knowledgeable about different styles and techniques with good experience to help bring students on in their studies.

H
Hila

Simon is a very patient and talented teacher. I was a complete beginner and I now feel confident playing keyboard! Would highly recommend.

H
Hila

Simon is a very patient and talented teacher. I was a complete beginner and I now feel confident playing keyboard! Would highly recommend.

C
Chris

It is my belief that Simon is a first-class professional, having first worked with him appropriately 10 years ago.

By then it was already clear that he had a keen motivation, positive attitude and strong desire to improve the experience for all parties.

Yet having now started a recent project with him, I can confirm that he has furthered those attributes whilst consistently delivers quality output; particularly with close attention to briefing.

I would recommend Simon as a teacher, a collaborator or a performer with confidence that he will deliver.

S
Shammy

Simon has been my double bass teacher. Besides purely technical intricacies of the instrument, he has also been an excellent guide into the world of jazz and helped me understand the how and why of music in general. He is very knowledgeable and open to so many genres and influences - I could not recommend him enough.

A
Anna

Simon is a fantastic piano tutor. He’s professional, but with a fun teaching style. He tailored his teaching to my personal musical tastes which helped to keep me engaged and motivated.

Interview with Simon

QUESTION 01 | 08
When did you first develop a passion for music and your favourite instrument?
Simon — I grew up around music and it was my parents and sister who passed on their enthusiasm for music. I started out on the keyboards going to lessons from a particularly eccentric teacher called Mr. Paton. I then found the bass guitar and began playing in rock bands through high school and through my music teacher Miss Sommerville's advice to "Expand your musicality." I found jazz and played with a local youth big band and toured with a smaller ensemble as a teenager. By then I knew that the bass was for me and from that perspective I would discover new music from all over the world.
QUESTION 02 | 08
Is there a particular type of music or artist that you listen to on a loop without it driving you crazy?
Simon — I can listen to just about anything and find it interesting but I love listening to jazz (at this moment Charles Mingus), the music coming out of Mali in recent years and I'm always happy to have a new recommendation from my students!
QUESTION 03 | 08
Explain to us the most difficult or riveting course you could personally give to a student of music.
Simon — The most difficult course I could give to a student would be Jazz for the Bass Guitar and Double Bass as I have studied this (and composition) to degree level and am still studying it and learning more and more. Although this would be riveting, the greatest inspiration I find comes from teaching a student Composition. It is such a personal journey and so multifaceted there is always more to learn and it is riveting to share in the students journey in composition.
QUESTION 04 | 08
What do you think is the most complicated instrument to master and why?
Simon — All instruments are complicated to completely master as this is the goal not the destination. The most complicated instrument for me would be drums as I don't have the coordination (!) however I think the steepest learning curve would be the violin as it sounds like cats for a long time before it gives you the satisfaction of sounding musical! This is why bass is so great as anyone can pick it up and get a musical sound from it and be encouraged to keep at it and play music.
QUESTION 05 | 08
What do you think is the most complicated instrument to master and why?
Simon — All instruments are complicated to completely master as this is the goal not the destination. The most complicated instrument for me would be drums as I don't have the coordination (!) however I think the steepest learning curve would be the violin as it sounds like cats for a long time before it gives you the satisfaction of sounding musical! This is why bass is so great as anyone can pick it up and get a musical sound from it and be encouraged to keep at it and play music.
QUESTION 06 | 08
Name three musicians you dream of meeting in your favourite bar in the early hours of the morning. Explain why.
Simon — Musician's alive now:
Flea (Michael Balzary) - I had the bass book for the Red Hot Chili Peppers Greatest Hits and I fell in love with the bass as a result.
Dave Grohl - My favourite band as a teenager was Foo Fighters and they inspired me to start a band with my friends.
Bjork Guðmundsdóttir - My favourite living composer and a fascinating person.

Not alive now:
Charles Mingus - The greatest bassist composer and a wild character.
Robert Burns - Scotland's bard, song collector and writer.
Jaco Pastorius - The greatest bass guitar player of all time.
QUESTION 07 | 08
Provide a valuable anecdote related to music or your days at music school.
Simon — "The rhythm matters more than the notes" (Mario Caribe). The rhythm is the power of the music. The wrong rhythm is much more noticeable to the audience than a wrong note.

"Move to the music" (Renee Stephanie). When we move to music we internalise the rhythm, we relax any tension in our technique and we communicate with the rest of the musicians.

"Interplay" (Haftor Medbøe). All elements are equally important in the band. The music is the result of the interplay of the musicians.
QUESTION 08 | 08
What are the little touches that make you a Superprof in music?
Simon — Over the past 10+ years of my career I have learned my greatest responsibility is to enable my students to grow a greater enthusiasm and love for music and sound. I have also learned every student is unique and so I work with each student to tailor each lesson to them.

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