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Like many ACM Alumni, Simon Loveridge grew up surrounded by music and with the ambition to become a musician. Long car trips listening to Elton John, Billy Joel and Sting and the soundtracks to old Nintendo video games were the norm and Simon’s first inspirations.
Initially as a self taught musician, Simon joined ACM’s Bass Diploma course before progressing and completing the Cert HE course. ACM caught up with Simon to talk about what he’s been up to since graduating in 2007.
What motivated you to come and study at ACM?
Before a close friend of mine applied to ACM in 2005 I hadn’t heard of a music college that allowed students to spend all day with like-minded musicians, play and learn about contemporary music for hours a day, and have the opportunity to meet and play music with people from all over the country. It was the first time that I had the impression that I could go into education and feel completely comfortable with everything that was being taught.
What was the best part about studying at ACM?
Two things really stick out as being the best parts of studying at ACM; the first has to be the friends I met and musical relationships I forged. I still speak to people from ACM seven years on and still call upon (and get called upon) for musical endeavours. I’m currently filling in as bassist for the band Alphabet Backwards for an upcoming festival – the drummer of which was a degree student when I was studying at ACM. This is a gig I wouldn’t have got had I not made friends with him at college.
The second was that I got an idea of how the music industry really works. The ACM tutors went above and beyond what was in the text books and gave us a real life account of their experiences in the industry. Some of it was great and reassured me, some of it made me re-evaluate exactly how I wanted my musical career to take shape.
Tell us about what you’ve been up to since leaving ACM?
I took a year off and moved back home before beginning a degree in Sound Technology and Digital Music. After one semester of programming, electronics and maths, I realised I should stick to what I know and switched to Music. While at university I spent a huge amount of my time composing music and made the decision that I wanted a career as a composer for video games/TV/film.
Once I graduated I took an admin assistant job which meant I was able to buy the necessary music equipment that I needed and still pay rent during the six months I was working there. In the meantime a good friend of mine told me about a job going at Freestyle Games in Leamington Spa as a gameplay designer for an upcoming music game. He put in a good word for me and after a test and an interview, I was lucky enough to get the job and I’ve now moved to Leamington Spa. I’m now designing the gameplay for a music video game and I couldn’t be happier!
Who have you been working with?
I was lucky enough to get the opportunity to write the soundtrack to a video game developed by Ben ‘Yahtzee’ Croshaw (Zero Punctuation). I’m a huge fan of Yahtzee’s and it was a great honour writing the music for his game Poacher which was released in April of last year. I also contacted several music production companies and publishers at the beginning of the year whom I sent copies of music I had composed. This however was put on hold when I started working for Freestyle Games. Hopefully these relationships will remain in the future and I won’t have heard the last from them!
What’s been your proudest moment/career highlights so far?
My proudest moment has been successfully getting the job with Freestyle Games. They are owned by Activision/Blizzard and to be a part of one of the largest and most successful independent video game developers in the world is an absolute dream come true. I also came close to winning a cover competition set up by Lindsey Stirling, and was featured and mentioned in one of her videos!
So what’s on the horizon for 2013?
I will continue working at Freestyle Games for the foreseeable future whilst writing and recording music in my spare time including arranging and recording heavy metal video game covers for my small but growing YouTube audience.
Do you have any advice or tips for our current ACM students?
If you’re not where you want to be, know what you want to do or not doing a job in music don’t panic. Love what you do and never give up. You’ll get the job you want eventually if you persevere, and you will only truly be able to persevere if you love what you do.
ACM would like to thank Alumni Simon Loveridge for getting back in touch to update us on his recent work and wish him the very best for the future.
Follow Simon Loveridge on YouTube.