FIND OUT MORE ABOUT GUITARGUITAR

We have been working with guitarguitar on our free short course programme across the year, offering a £50 voucher to anyone who successfully completes the course.
We thought it was would be a great opportunity to share more information on the instrument retailer before the courses round up for the summer. Read on to find out more.

guitarguitar is an employee owned, award-winning musical instrument retailer for players, by players.

Founded by Kip McBay and Graham Bell in Edinburgh in 2004, guitarguitar takes pride in being the UK’s largest guitar retailer. Running for 18+ years and counting with over 160 expert employees, stocking everything a musician could possibly need. Whether you’re beginner, intermediate or rocking the main stage – guitarguitar have got the instrument for you and are here to help you find it.

They have incredible offers available including pre-owned guitars available at a variety of price points. Including benefits such as:

  • 12 month warranty with pre-owned instruments and 90 days for electronic
  • All pre-owned items are inspected, play-tested and set up before resale
  • Condition report and professional quality photography listed for each product
  • Second hand guitars are strung with quality D’Addario strings

For new equipment guitarguitar stock a wide range of acousticelectric and bass guitar brands. This includes leading manufacturers such as Fender, Gibson and Ibanez, as well as lesser-known boutique brands. You can find the full list of brands they stock here.

We recently visited the guitarguitar Edinburgh store and enjoyed a guided tour with their expert team, staff performances, demonstrations and we found out more about the team’s top production picks. Check out some photos from our visit below.

Our last free short courses start Monday 4th July, why not sign up for a course of your choice and be in with the chance of receiving one of our £50 rewards vouchers?

Check out the courses on offer & guitarguitar below.


"Women are at the forefront of UK Hip Hop": Arusa Qureshi Interview

We sat down with Arusa Qureshi, Edinburgh based author of ‘Flip the Script: How Women Came to Rule Hip Hop’, to discuss her life long connection with hip hop, the genres impact globally and closer to home as well as her career pathway, from her role as editor of The List to working with We are Here Scotland.

If you are considering taking part in one of our Rap & Hip Hop or Women in Music short courses coming up in June, make sure to check out Flip the Script as a great starting point to learn more.

Hey Arusa! Why don’t you tell us a little about yourself?

I’m Arusa Qureshi, I’m a writer and editor based in Edinburgh. I write mostly about music, but I also do a lot of work in diversity and accessibility in arts and culture. I used to be the editor of The List and now I’m a freelancer and I write for various places like NME, The Guardian and Gold Flake Paint. And most recently I’ve written a book called ‘Flip the Script: How Women Came to Rule Hip Hop’, which is a love letter to women in hip hop in the UK specifically. 

At the start of your book, there’s a section all about hip hop being your safe haven and drawing the reader in with sharing your own connection with music from a young age, why don’t you tell us about that.

So hip hop is something that I’m really passionate about. Growing up, just seeing those women on TV owning their confidence really did something for me. It’s not just a genre of music, it’s more than that. It’s a cultural movement and it’s something I do love to analyse and write about and delve into the political and cultural aspects of it. I’ve written quite a lot about American hip hop and the roots of the genre. But I wanted to shine a light on what women in the UK were doing because I really feel like women are at the forefront of innovations that are happening in hip hop. 

Yes, hip hop started in the Bronx, but it has travelled the world and it’s morphed and picked up things as it’s traveled. So, I’m really interested in where we are in the UK at the moment.  

You can sense that lifelong connection, what really kicked off writing the book for you back in 2020?

Both the Scottish Album of the Year Award and the Welsh Music Prize were both won by women rappers, that’s Nova (SAY Award) and Deyah (WMP). It felt like we were in a really exciting period, that there was something special going on and I wanted to capture it in some way, and that’s what the book was. 

You talk in the book about writing your dissertation on hip hop in 2015 and being strongly advised against it by your lecturers. What was that experience like?

My tutors didn’t see hip hop as a genuine art form. Which made me sad at the time and it still does thinking about it. But I went ahead and did it and I’m really glad I did because it really ignited this passion in terms of writing about hip hop and writing about the political aspects of music. 

Personally, I think, in the UK we’re still a little bit behind America in relation to hip hop in academia, things are definitely much further ahead. I think partly because when Kendrick Lamar won the Pulitzer Prize in 2018, that was just a huge deal because hip hop was finally entering this sphere of being like a real art form, of being really respected. 

I really do think even though it is born in New York, hip hop represents and tells you a story about very specific communities or groups of people, people with a very specific political history. And for that reason, it should be taken seriously. 

The Academy of Music and Sound is proud to be the developers of the first Rap & Hip Hop pathway and short course into full time higher education in Scotland. Find out more about the educational opportunities we have on offer here.

Absolutely, we’ve seen a large scale shift in the media and education even in the past few years. What has your career looked like since finishing up your degree?

I went on to do a Masters at Napier in magazine publishing. I don’t think that doing a masters is the most important thing in the world at all. But it was the right choice for me at the time. I was really lucky that I got a scholarship to do it. So, because I was so grateful to be there, I really put myself forward for absolutely everything. I took advantage of all the free tickets that we got to conferences and events. I really didn’t close myself off from any experience that came my way. And I was interested in writing and editing, but I was willing to try out different things in that industry. The List had an opening and I just wanted to learn everything I could. I gradually became a part of the content team, and then in 2017 the editor was leaving. I applied for her job and somehow, I got it. And I say that because it was unexpected at the time. Unfortunately, because of COVID, my role as editor was made redundant in August 2020.  

That must have been really tough.

Yeah, I was at the company for almost five years in total. So, it was horrible. But I became a full time freelancer shortly after. And I’ve been doing that since, and I’m really grateful to say that it has worked out. I’ve been able to do all kinds of different things. So, like, writing for publications like NME and The Guardian and and Time Out. And I’ve done some radio work, and I worked on a BBC podcast for a little bit. And then I wrote a book. And none of that would have happened if I hadn’t lost my job.  

You’ll have built up a number of transferable skills in your time in the industry. That’s kind of what our short courses are about, giving people the chance to discover something new or up-skill. Which has been vital for so many creatives.  

I think first of all, what you’re saying about the short courses, that kind of thing is so perfect for if you are wanting to just build on what you already have or you know what you don’t have in terms of skill sets. Over the past two years it’s things like that I really looked out for I guess to try just push myself in different ways in the industry. It’s sometimes the case that you think you’re good at one thing and you can’t really do anything else but there’s so many things you could do with the skills that you have and that’s really what I’ve learned over the past two years. 

Do you think your transferable skills made the transition to freelancing easier?

I took the time to try all opportunities that came my way. It’s about really looking at the skills that you have and seeing what else you could use them for. And I think in terms of the skills I had from my earlier job, being organised, attention to detail and good with deadlines honestly helps me in everything I do. I think you have to really think outside the box a little bit when you’re looking at what you could use your skills for. You might think, “well, I’m a writer, so I can only write.” 

But you can work in TV, you can work in radio, you can work in film. You can work in all kinds of things. It’s just about being open to trying things. 

Would you say there are any resources you’ve used specifically to find hip hop opportunities throughout your career?

When it came to just looking for opportunities and applying for jobs, I subscribed to a lot of different newsletters that were free to subscribe to. They would send out regular specifically writing opportunities, but also ones that would say whether there was a role in the music industry for example, and it was just a good thing to keep getting that in my inbox. Just to remind me that there are things out there in terms of resources for hip hop. I really wish there was more written about just hip hop generally, but also specifically about women and hip hop. And there is a lot of written about it in in the US, but not as much in the UK. 

You can look at my bibliography in the book, which has everything that I read and that will give you a really good idea of resources in the genre. 

Are there any organisations to look into too?

I think it’s also worth drawing attention to another organization I work for called ‘We Are Here Scotland’, which is basically all about amplifying voices of creatives of color in Scotland and we do various things. We’ve been working on a creator fund, so artists of color in Scotland can apply for £500 bursaries for things like equipment or studio time or something like that. And I think it’s been a really good resource so far because as well as the fund we offer mentorship. I think mentorship is one of the most important things for people starting out. 

“Hip Hop is not just a genre of music, it’s more than that. It’s a cultural movement.”

That sounds incredible, having even 1 person in your corner can make such a difference.

Absolutely! And not just for people who are just starting out, but even people who are further on in their careers. Just being able to speak to people who’ve made that step or done what you’re looking to do. It is just so important that you’re getting the advice from somebody that has already been there and done. It can be totally valuable. 

Tell us a little more about We Are Here Scotland.

We Are Here was founded by Ica Headlam, and the project was initially funded through crowdfunding and now has received Creative Scotland funding to support the next round of people and it’s just been so great so far. The first round of people who got the funding, that was a little while ago, they’re all in their process of using that money and doing the mentorship and stuff and it’s really cool to see. £500 isn’t a huge amount of money to some people, but for somebody just starting out when you’re looking for materials or you’re looking to even just pay yourself to be able to do a project, it can be so important.  

We’re just trying to demystifying things a bit and help people that maybe think that they don’t belong in not just the music industry, but the wider creative industries. We want to really show that there is a place for them. And there’s people here to help. 

That’s really incredible. How do you feel about Hip Hop in the UK right now?

I’m honestly so proud of where we are at the moment when it comes to hip hop in Scotland. Hip Hop in the UK is always traditionally revolved around London and that’s makes sense because it’s kind of where it started in the UK. But there’s so much going on beyond London and the levels of talent that we have in all regions is just insane. I feel like hip hop & offshoots like grime and drill etc. are thriving. We can’t just look to London automatically as the place to find the best of the next big talent. Nova winning the SAY Award, I think that meant a huge amount to the Scottish music industry and just to the industry taking hip hop seriously and even beyond Scotland this. 

You know it is a hugely respected and really popular genre. There is a statistic in my book, I think it was from 2020 or 2021 that states, hip hop accounts for over a fifth of all UK singles consumption, which is like a sixfold increase on 1999 and that’s huge. 

Before you go Arusa, why don’t you share what’s in your playlists at the moment? Who are some of your favourite artists right now?

In Scotland I love BEMZ, Washington, Clarissa Woods and The Honey Farm. Elsewhere, I love Lil Simz and ENNY as well. If anyone is interested in just hearing more hip hop generally in the UK and I made a playlist that goes along with the book, at the moment it’s over 8 hours long, but I keep adding to it as things come out!  

Check out the Flip the Script Playlist here.


If you would like to find out more about the culture of hip hop and rap performance AMS are running a series of short courses across Edinburgh & Glasgow in June. Classes take place across a variety of weekdays and run from 10am-4pm.  We are also running a weekend online Women in Music short course across 3 Saturdays and Sundays from 11th June until 26th June with classes running from 10am-4pm. You can find more information about all our courses below.


Wallpapers for Forms

Meet Scotlands Audio Designers Ahead of The Music & Sound for Games Short Course

Our Music & Sound for Games free short course sets out to allow sound designers to gain experience and learn the essential transferable skills needed when working within this globally recognised sector.

From ‘Grand Theft Auto’ to BAFTA winning ‘Crackdown’, the Scottish game sector has made indispensable contributions to the global games market. The sector is made up of a strongly connected network of freelancers and companies set out to create immersive gaming experiences for each player.

The Academy of Music and Sound looks forward to opening opportunities for people in Scotland aiming to access the sector, and support students as they take their first steps towards a potential career in music & sound for games. 

The online Music & Sound for Games course is free to all Scottish residents over the age of 14. You can find out more information about the course and apply below.

Purple visuals that read ‘free short course, Music & Sound for Games'

We wanted to give a direct insight into working in the games sector ahead of the course. We managed to sit down with two of Scotland’s’ own sound designers, Luci Holland and Kenny Young to discuss working in the games sector. Kenny and Luci have both spent a great deal of time building up their skills and network within the games sector and have worked on some outstanding projects.  

Luci Holland smiling while holding an instrument. Featured interviewee ahead of the music & sound for games short course

Meet the audio designers

Luci not only composed the dynamic score for Blazing Griffin‘s multiplayer-stealth game Murderous Pursuits, but she has worked as a freelance composer and sound artist across games, film and interactive sound installations for over 10 years. She also runs her own UK game show, ‘The Console’ on Scala Radio along her freelance Programme Manager position within Glasgow’s own, Tinderbox Collective. While Luci enjoys working on all types of music for media, it was playing games like LoZ: Ocarina of Time, Broken Sword, and The Secret of Monkey Island as a child that first hooked Luci into music, and music & sound for games especially. 

Kenny Young, music & sound for games specialist

 

 

For Kenny, his combined interest in how sound and the moving image worked together, and games and technology made audio for games feel like the best fit for him. Considering a career in both film and gaming, the latter won due to the nature of the film industry being less appealing than that of sound design for games. Kenny has worked on an impressive variety of projects. From running the audio department of Media Molecule for many years and developing sound experiences such as ‘LittleBigPlanet’ and ‘Tearaway’, to working with Sony Japan on Astro’s Playroom, Kenny may be part of the Scottish industry, but his work truly reaches the international market.  

When asked if there was anything in particular that interested them in audio for gaming, they had the following to share:  
Luci

“There are a lot of things that I find fascinating about games audio, but I find just the puzzle of making interactive experiences quite inspiring – for example the process of figuring out what role the player has when interacting with the game, and how the sound is shaped to respond to this in interesting and immersive ways.”

Kenny

“It’s challenging to create an interactive audio experience, so if you enjoy working with and wrangling technology then that’s part of the draw. You definitely need to have good problem-solving skills, and a love of technology absolutely helps.

There are other tangential benefits that come with the complexity of making games such as the need for teamwork, and the industry is therefore intrinsically rather collaborative, relatively flexible and often quite meritocratic in nature. The audio community has a reputation for being welcoming to newcomers, perhaps because it has always had such a high percentage of freelancers and so the support and social networks tend to be strong.” 

They also shared their pathways into the games industry. 
Photo Credit: Scala Radio
Luci

“I’ve probably been more largely involved in the games industry for about 5 years now, working as a freelance composer for studios and independent developers. Outside of games though I’ve been working as a freelance composer and musician for around 10 years.  

My path has been a big mix of work but with a focus on composition both in and out of games – I’ve worked on creative commissions and collaborations, recordings, performances, with local arts organisations, some teaching, and various other mixed artform projects.  

Within the games world as I have built a portfolio of work and gained more experience, I’ve connected and built more relationships with more game developers and other creative studios, both locally and further afield.” 

Kenny

“I’m originally from Edinburgh and had a musical background, playing violin and guitar as a kid and student. I decided not to pursue performance and went on to study Music Technology at Edinburgh Uni, before going on to study a master’s degree in Sound Design at Bournemouth.  

Outside of my studies, I spent the year of my MA really focusing on researching the industry and trying to get a job in games, and I was fortunate enough to go straight into a junior sound design position with Sony London Studio in 2004. I left Sony in 2007 to start up the audio department at Media Molecule, which is when I began writing and contributing more music in addition to my sound design and audio direction duties. 

I decided to go freelance in 2015 and moved back to Scotland at the end of 2020. So, geographically speaking, I’m absolutely part of the Scottish industry now, but my work is international, and I haven’t worked with any Scottish developers yet. I’m sure I will one day!”


the best work comes not from talented individuals but from talented individuals collaborating. Collaboration has shaped and informed my career. - Kenny Young

As we are launching a new educational pathway of audio for games, we were curious to hear Kenny and Luci’s opinions on education in their specialist field.  
Luci

“It’s great to see more local institutions exploring and teaching more in this field – I would love to see game music composition and audio become a thriving creative hub here in Scotland, showcasing the importance of these roles and helping to continually advance both games audio and games themselves.”

Kenny

 “Outside of learning bread and butter topics, I think the most important thing I got from my studies was inspiration. Not just in terms of studying the best of what had come before, but also the context in which it had come to fruition – the understanding that the best work comes not from talented individuals but from talented individuals collaborating has shaped and informed my career. 

I think it’s important for students trying to get into the creative industries to know that nobody is going to hire them based on a qualification they have. The point of studying is to learn new skills so you can level up and apply yourself in a relatively efficient manner. The trick is being able to show the fruits of that to prospective employers or clients. So, your portfolio is crucial, and you need to take every opportunity you can to add to it and make a real effort to work on projects with other people rather than just personal projects because this will help you to grow the collaboration and communication skills that are necessary to succeed.”

We all have a connection with games in one way or another, whether it’s a memory from a long time ago or a current favourite hobby. We were keen to know the first use of audio in a game that really caught Luci and Kenny’s attention and what their favourite soundtrack / score or use of audio effect is now.
Luci

“One memory that comes to mind is a simple one, but it was probably the first time I really took notice of reactive music – it was while playing Pikmin and noticing the interactive musical layers shifting as you explored the level! Different instrumental layers play based on whether you are near treasure, or enemies – very satisfying.  

In terms of favourites, that’s such a tricky one to answer as I have so many and it’s also constantly changing! I’m a huge fan of these scores:  

  • Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture (Jessica Curry),  
  • LA Noire (Andrew Hale & Simon Hale),  
  • EverQuest II (Laura Karpman),  
  • The Vanishing of Ethan Carter (Mikolai Stroinski),  
  • Kingdom Hearts (Yoko Shimomura),  
  • The Last Guardian (Takeshi Furukawa) and 
  •  Hollow Knight (Christopher Larkin) 

Those are some regular favourites I constantly return to.” 

Kenny

“I have fond memories of PC games in the 90s – Doom, Sim City 2000, X-Wing, Wing Comander III amongst many others. Messing about in Doom level editors was my first introduction to game engines and design tools. But Deus Ex stands out as a particularly formative experience – it really sucked me in with its branching story line, use of gameplay as narrative and Alexander Brandon’s wonderful, evocative music. 

Ah, there’s so much good stuff! Off the top of my head, I’d say my favourite soundtracks were Monkey Island 2, the Portal games, Martin Stig Andersen’s amazing work at Playdead on Limbo and Inside, Austin Wintory’s music in Journey. All great scores but, more importantly, all great games with the audio experience contributing significantly to the end result. 

 And that’s a key point – the job of the composer is not to “write music” it’s to contribute towards the music experience as part of the wider player experience. It’s all too easy at the beginning of your career to focus on the technical side of writing music but writing music that fits an experience is a whole other skill and you need to develop that muscle and understanding too.”

__________________________________________________________

Make sure you check out what Luci and Kenny are working on at the moment over on their socials.  

Luci Holland

 Twitter | Facebook | Website

Kenny Young

Twitter | Facebook | Website

 

Apply now for the Music & Sound for Games free short course.


aaron wilson summer rock guitar school

Aaron Wilson presents Guitar Summer School of Rock at AMS Edinburgh

AMS Edinburgh HND student Aaron Wilson will be running a rock guitar summer school series this year at the Edinburgh campus in Leith taking place over various dates.

The summer school will be 3 days a week, bi-weekly over 4 weeks in total, and the days will consist of 3 different groups: 2 hours Beginner group, then 2 hours Intermediate, then 2 hours Advanced.  Group sizes will be limited to 5 people and all sessions will adhere to strict social distancing guidelines. There will be beginner, intermediate and advanced sessions to suit every level of experience, and anyone is welcome to come along!

Each lesson is designed to boost all areas of attendees’ guitar playing and knowledge covering everything from scales, modes, fretboard and general music theory, and chord knowledge, to covering genre and guitarist appreciation and learning how to jam with your favourite songs and in a band setting; Aaron will cover it all!  

Dates:
Week 1: 6th, 7th, 8th of July
Week 2: 20th, 21st, 22nd of July
Week 3: 3rd, 4th, 5th of August
Week 4: 10th, 11th, 12th of August.  

Prices:
£65 a week per person OR £240 for 4 weeks

To book your place, contact Aaron Wilson on any of the following:
07932071121 | aaronwilsonguitarlessons@gmail.comwww.aarronwilsonguitarlessons.com

aaron wilson summer rock guitar school

About Aaron Wilson

Aaron is a lead guitarist, guitar tutor and session musician based in Edinburgh, about to complete his HND qualification at AMS Edinburgh. Aaron has been a lover of music for as long as he can remember, starting his musical journey at just 7 years old with his very first guitar. He has been passionately dedicated to playing and progressing with guitar in all ways ever since!  Aaron has studied guitar at multiple different music institutions, such as the Academy of Music and Sound Edinburgh, and Morningside School of Music, and also currently teaches guitar for the Leith School of Music.

With a range of experience in several forms of music, including Blues, Rock, Metal, Jazz, Fusion, and Finger-Style Acoustic, Aaron has become a proficient, young teaching professional, confident tutoring many styles. He also has experience in the live music scene too, having performed within various bands and as a session musician. 

Instagram page@aaron_wilzo
Facebook PageAaron Wilson Music
Websitewww.aaronwguitarlessons.com


ams edinburgh free online workshops songwriting guitar

Free Songwriting & Guitar Workshop Open Day with AMS Edinburgh

We’re doing something a little different for our next open day…

Join our Edinburgh team on 5th June for an open day with something a little extra – a free guitar and songwriting workshop, for those budding strummers and songwriters out there! Enjoy two workshops with AMS tutors Michael Mackay and Marina Rolink, followed by a presentation about studying at AMS Edinburgh, and a Q&A session for you to ask anything and everything about our courses.

Schedule: 

  • 12:00: Introduction and presentation
  • 12:30 – 13:30 – “Making Friends with Inspiration” Songwriting Workshop with Marina Rolink
  • 13:30 – 14:30 – “Tools for the Modern Guitarist” Guitar Workshop with Michael Mackay
  • 14:30 – Q&A Session: Courses and Studying at AMS Edinburgh

Guitar Workshop

The presentation will cover:

  • How to apply
  • Fees and funding
  • The audition process
  • Life at AMS Edinburgh!

We will be hosting the event via Microsoft Teams. Digital invites to join the event will be sent via email once you have signed up. Sign up via the button below to secure your free slot. The workshop is open to anyone who wants to learn a bit more about us, but would be particularly relevant for those looking into potential further study at HNC/HND level.

For more information feel free to get in touch by calling 0131-656-0600 or email edinburgh@academyofmusic.ac.uk if you have any questions about the event or signing up.

We look forward to meeting you all!


hip hop hnc study and skills workshop free online with steg g scottsih rapper ams scotland hnd course music

Announcing our new Hip-Hop Free Mini Workshop with Steg G!

Love hip-hop or rap? Want to expand your skills? Considering further study? Come along to our free mini-hip-hop workshop with popular Scottish rapper and AMS tutor Steg G.

Gain an introduction into hip-hop and rap, and studying at AMS Edinburgh or Glasgow at this upcoming one-off mini-workshop. The 2 hour session acts as an introduction to our Hip-Hop and Rap course pathway, part of our accredited HNC/HNC qualification. Attendees will learn some basic hip-hop, rap and beat-making skills, plus get a run down on what our HNC/HND course entails, including the hip-hop specific pathway.

You will also have the chance to ask general questions about studying at AMS (Scotland – Edinburgh or Glasgow) and learn about the courses we offer, in particular the HNC/HND where students get the chance to focus particularly on hip-hop and rap. Sign up to get the Zoom link sent straight to your inbox.

 

Event Programme

  • What is Rap? A brief history and how to start rapping
  • Rap techniques for beginners: different kinds of rap and poetry
  • Lean about techniques such as end rhymes and internal rhymes
  • How to structure and arrange a rap song
  • Finding your rap voice
  • Freestyle lessons: how to freestyle and expand your rhyme
  • Vocabulary: Advanced rap techniques such as assonance, alliteration and multi syllabic rhymes
  • Beat making: Introduction to beat making software and hardware
  • Introduction to sampling
  • Introduction to midi beat-making
  • Performance techniques and tips
  • Introduction and Q&A to the AMS HNC/HND Course

hip hop hnc study and skills workshop free online with steg g scottsih rapper ams scotland hnd course music

Steg G

Steg is a Hip Hop Artist from Glasgow. In 2019 he released the album THE AIR IN BETWEEN and in October 2019 won Best Hip Hop artist at the SAMA awards. For the last few years he has been producing for lots of artists such as Loki, Freestyle Master, Empress, CCTV, Stanley Odd, Mad hat, and many more, helping them shine and showcasing their talents. In 2020 he fully produced the – Empress – Love wins album which was released in June 2020 year to critical acclaim. This year  (2021) Steg G  released his latest album – Live Today . The album is a concept / story that was wrote and produced around the themes of toxic masculinity and addictions.

 

Hip-Hop at AMS Scotland

Our new Hip-Hop and Rap HNC/HND pathway launched in 2020 – the first music college to run this option – and it has become incredibly popular. It offers weekly classes covering songwriting techniques, style analysis and live performance to improve technical aptitude and theoretical understanding.

Our team have been working diligently with industry professionals to finally provide this course in an area typically overlooked in music education. Alongside this we also run regular free hip-hop short courses each term. Find out more.


ams gateshead ba hons foundation degree music diploma open day online zoom newcastle study music

AMS Edinburgh is hiring-Admissions and Recruitment Administrator

We’re hiring!

Our Edinburgh centre is looking for a new member of the team! Applications are open for a new and highly-motivated Admissions and Recruitment Administrator with an immediate start date.

The successful candidate will have a good understanding of marketing with the aim to attract potential students to our full-time and short music courses.  Strong interpersonal skills, an innovative approach to development and excellent organisational and administrative skills are key aspects of this role.

The role will entail fulfilling a marketing strategy, organisation of marketing materials and budget, personal interaction with potential students through face to face/virtual contact, phone and email and facilitating events such as open evenings and public performances. There will also initial contact front of desk duties taking enquiries through ‘phone calls and emails and some office administration.

A large aspect of the role is also to make and maintain good relations with schools throughout Scotland and to attend their careers events and progression fairs.

The ideal candidate will be a graduate from a marketing, music events management or music related background, or from a customer services background.

6 month fix term, subject to review in September 2021

15 hour a week

£18,200 Pro rata

Deadline for applying is March 5th 2021

To apply, please send your CV to alyssa.renwick@academyofmusic.ac.uk.

More details here.

 

Essential Desirable
A high level of literacy

Driver’s licence

Proficiency in using Microsoft Office Word and Excel

Proficiency in performing administrative tasks

Ability for flexible working to accommodate occasional evenings and Saturdays

Ability to be confident at public events and to represent the company in a positive way.

Working knowledge of marketing practices and social media platforms

Bachelor’s degree in Marketing, Events Management, Music or a related field.

Understanding of music and the music industry

Knowledge of Further and Higher Education structures

 

 

 


hnc edinburgh open day event scotland ba hons music course academy of music

Missed out on our HNC open event? Don't fret, another one is coming!

Missed out on our last open day? Not to worry – There’s another chance to join our Edinburgh team for an insight into the HNC in Music on Wednesday 3rd March!

Last week saw over 30 attend our most recent HNC online open event.  There was great performances from current AMS Edinburgh students, a digital presentation about the HNC course, what you can expect from a course at AMS, and all the details on how to apply and when. But if you missed out, don’t worry. There’s another chance to attend an open day in a few weeks.

Wednesday 3rd March 20201: Via Zoom, our friendly team will guide attendees through all aspects of the HNC course (starting in September 2021) covering all you need to know about the course content and requirements. We will host this event on Zoom with invites to join this event via email once you have signed up.

Find out about:

  • How to apply
  • Fees and funding
  • The audition process
  • Life at AMS Edinburgh!

You will have the opportunity to ask questions and find out what it’s like to be part of our team. You will also be treated to wonderful performances from some of our talented students and staff!

Schedule: 

  • 17:00 – 17:30 – Introduction and Q&A Session
  • 17:30 – 18:00 – Performances
  • 18:00 – Fin

If you require further information please feel free to get in touch by calling 0131-656-0600 or alternatively email edinburgh@academyofmusic.ac.uk 

We look forward to meeting you all!


edinburgh hnc music fast track free scotland short courses online dates announced summer exeter study music degrees ams

Need experience fast? Our fast-track HNC gets you a qualification in just 7 months!

Want to stand out from the crowd? It’s not too late – find your edge and get a cut above the rest with our fast-track degree scheme in Edinburgh, and get a HNC in music in just 7 months! 

So many of us have lost out on gigs and opportunities this year, and while things are difficult, a music qualification might just be the edge you need to stand out when we come out the other side!

Musicians after something a little different from a music qualification look no further than our fast-track HNC scheme.  The partially SAAS funded HNC in Music (with AMS Edinburgh) is specifically designed to help musicians get ahead and give them an edge in a competitive industry, and could be the perfect opportunity for those musicians feeling a little lost this year. 

Through our fast-track scheme you can get a qualification in just 7 months, fast-tracking your way to the start of a HND starting in Autumn 2021 – your ticket to getting a full degree in just one third of the time.

With the sector facing some of its biggest ever challenges, this might just be the ideal time to expand your skill set, and develop your expertise. Because if not now… When?

edinburgh hnc music fast track free scotland short courses online dates announced summer exeter study music degrees ams

Our entry-reqs are different too!

We understand everyone has different life experiences. At the Academy of Music and Sound, we look to recognizse potential and welcome everyone from different backgrounds. As such, if you do not have a Higher English or Music we will still accept your application and process.

If your application is accepted you will be asked to perform and speak to one of our members of staff during an interview and audition. Providing you are well-rehearsed and are passionately invested in your own learning and improvement you could very well be part of our musical community.

Our approach is different to many other educators – we will continue to have an open approach and increased inclusivity to our courses. If you’re talented and passionate about what you do, then you deserve to be recognised.

 

 

About the HNC in Music


The fast-track HNC is a 7 month course starting on 4 January 2021 right through to 6 August 2021.  

The HNC in music is designed by musicians, for musicians, and features modules such as Music Business, Recording Techniques, Music Theory, History and Stagecraft. 

 

HNC Course Details:
 

Duration:

Start date: 4 January 2021
End Date: 6 August 2021

Units of study: 

Music First Study: Instrument
Music Theory
Music Business
Music History
Music: Live Performance
Music: Stagecraft for Musicians
Music: Organising a Community-based Musical Activity
Music: Songwriting
Music: Recording Techniques
Graded Unit 1 

 

About the Academy of Music & Sound Edinburgh

As an independent and dynamic academy, we cover everything from contemporary rock and pop instruments, to composition, songwriting and back again. Oh… And did we mention we started the first Scottish hip-hop and rap pathway?

Over the years AMS has welcomed over 5000 students onto courses in popular music, production and music business courses over the years. In July 2019 we celebrated 25 years in music education – always changing and adapting to keep in-step with changes in the modern music industry, we’ve proudly established ourselves as leaders in independent music education. 

AMS alumni not only go on to become highly successful musicians but also educators, promoters, and even music therapists. We can help you explore the careers that best interests you.

 


Safety first…


It’s not been an easy year, thankfully we’ve adapted swiftly. This term, we’re minimising class sizes & contact time and we’ve gained more space for teaching at our centres.  Adapting courses thoroughly for online delivery, and because we’re an intimate & independent college, able to offer dedicated online one-on-one and live group sessions to all students.

 

Get yourself to an online open day….

Saturday November 7th & Saturday December 5th. 

Book now!


academyofmusic sound production free online short course

Our Free Short Courses in Scotland are back!

Academy of Music and Sound’s free online short-courses have returned for 2020-21 offering ‘Sound Production’ and ‘Hip-Hop and Rap Beat-making feat. Steg Gilfoyle (A.K.A rap legend Steg G). The courses will be available to everyone living in Scotland.

academyofmusic sound production free online short course

We’re really excited to be able to bring back our short course programme in the new academic year, now fully adapted and optimised for online execution. This time around we’re brining back some of our favourites. The term kicks off with Sound Production, a week long free short course designed to explore the fundamentals of recording theory and best practice through streamed group classes and individual 1-1 lessons with the guidance of experienced industry professionals. Plus our songwriting course will be back as well as our Women In Music masterclass, previously led by Karyln King and Melisa Kelly.

There’s also the new addition of a hip-hop and rap short course led by Glasgow’s own hip-hop legend Steg G. It comes ahead of our newly announced hip-hop HND Pathway, which will be available for anyone studying the HND with us at either of our Scotland centres.

Each short course includes one to one and group sessions with our faculty and upon completion be posted a certification. All dates and more details for the rest of this year can be found via our dedicated short course page or scroll down for dates already announced.

Applications are open for all dates and you can apply here. If you’d like to speak to our Scotland teams about learning more, you can also get in touch with us at edinburgh@academyofmusic.ac.uk for our Edinburgh centre or glasgow@academyofmusic.ac.uk for our Glasgow team.

We look forward to hearing from you all!

Sound Production

Glasgow Dates (2020)

  • Starting Monday 21st September and concluding Friday 2nd October.
  • Starting Monday 12th October and concluding Friday 16th October.
  • Starting Monday 9th November and concluding Friday 20th November.
  • Starting Monday 7th December and concluding Friday 18th December.

Edinburgh dates (2020)

  • 6 weekend course starting Saturday 5th September and concluding Sunday 11th October.
  • 6 weekend course starting Saturday 17th October and concluding Sunday 22nd  November.

 

Hip Hop and Rap

Glasgow Dates (2020)

  • Starting Monday 28th September and concluding Friday 2nd October.
  • Starting Monday 12th October and concluding Friday 16th October.

 

Women In Music: Empowerment and Employability

 

Edinburgh dates (2020)

  • This is online course will take place over two Weekends, starting on October 3rd and ending on October 11th.

 

Apply now


Edinburgh Virtual Open Day why study at edinburgh scotland music school college university catton hill hnc ba hons hnd

Why Study in Edinburgh?

September is on the horizon, and we’re still very much open for applications for the new academic year. Edinburgh is one of our 2 AMS centres in Scotland, and could prove to be an excellent choice if you’re looking for an exciting, buzzing city to take your musical study to the next level. From free short courses which we change and mix up each semester, to our hugely popular HNC/HND in Music and our BA Hons in Music and Sound, AMS Edinburgh have a great range of courses for you to sink your musical teeth into.

 

So, whats the city’s appeal?

 

The Scottish capital has a long-established reputation in the international festival circuit, offering a fantastic fusion of culture, art and performance. Most notably, Edinburgh annually hosts the incredible Edinburgh Fringe Festival and their famous 3-day New Year party. With festivals and cultural events scheduled all year around, Edinburgh has countless entertainment and opportunities for musicians, as well as infinite eating out options, theatres and comedy nights. The Edinburgh Centre is certainly the the best place to be to gain your start in the Music Industry!

The city is home to some fantastic venues like, Sneaky Pete’s, The Queens Hall, Leith Folk Club, Bannermans,  The Caves, and Stramash. And of course cultural structures and iconic places to visit like the famous Edinburgh Castle, Catton Hill and Authur’s Seat.

And it’s not far from some stunning beauty spots either – you can truly get the best of both worlds here.

Edinburgh Virtual Open Day why study at edinburgh scotland music school college university catton hill hnc ba hons hnd

What courses are available at AMS Edinburgh?

 

Free Short Courses | Each semester we update an exciting programme of free short courses. Most recently we’ve had some really fascinating courses on Women in Music, Sound Production, Hip-hop and Rap, and Working in the Music Industry. Most recently we adapted all our short courses – which are usually held in our studio and performance facilities in-centre – for online purposes due to the pandemic, and had some great responses from attendees! Keep your eyes peeled for next semester’s programme.

 

HNC/HND in Music | This specialist course for modern musicians is available at both our city centre facilities in Edinburgh and Glasgow.  Our unique selling point has always been supporting students with their chosen pathway – this year we are thrilled to announce that we are now offering Hip-Hop & Rap as a pathway on our HND Music course. Accredited by the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA), our HND is written in partnership with education professionals and industry experts, reflecting the current music industry and allows for further progression onto higher levels of study, expanding career opportunities and personal development. If you’re serious about your music, and want to take your creativity to the next level whilst studying an accredited undergraduate pathway then the HNC in Music could be for you.

 

BA Hons in Music and Sound – Equivalent to the 3rd year of a degree, this flexible top-up year is designed to follow on from our Foundation Degree in Music & Sound, but would also suit any applicants studying a music related HND, Foundation Degree or indeed those with recognised industry experience backed up with qualifications. Validated by the University of West London, the course has been developed to mirror the modern music industry, allowing students to learn the skills to become independent, multi-skilled music practitioners, fluent with various forms of multi-media. We provide the time, space and the opportunity to develop your own sound and work on your material alongside gaining valuable vocational skills.

 

Facilities
Our Edinburgh centre boasts teaching rooms, rehearsal rooms, mac suites, recording studios and a team of professional music tutors.

Learn from the pros
All our tutors and staff are working in music, and our courses are both delivered by and written by musicians. With that comes a great community, common goals and an immediate industry focus that you won’t get at your run of the mill college.

Alumni
Many of our past students are now working in music, check out our alumni page to find out more.

Who will I be learning from?

Our dedicated and passionate teaching team are all professional musicians with several years experience both in teaching and the music industry. You’ll be learning and working with a range of musical professionals, mostly have well established links with the Edinburgh and Glasgow music scenes and all have a wealth of knowledge.

On our singer-songwriter team, we’ve got Zac Scott a performer and artists with experience facilitating creative songwriting sessions across Scotland. He trained at Lincoln Center Education, New York and graduated with BA (Hons) in Contemporary Performance Practice at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. There’s also Georgia Smith our songwriting tutor – Georgia has a whole host of accolades from the likes of Scottish Jazz Awards, BBC Scotland and Society Magazine. In our vocals department is the wonderful Susanna Klayman, specialising in soul music she has over 12 years experience. Michael Mackay is one of our guitar tutors, an artist part of several local bands with a loyal following, and Ewan Gibson is our bass tutor, also part of many local projects.

If sound production is your thing, you’ll be learning first hand from Archie Biard. While Karyln King is our BA Course Coordinator, Music Business and Women in Music Tutor. Born in Glasgow, Karlyn is a prolific Popular Music academic, lecturer and researcher who regularly presents at industry conferences all over the UK, specialising in Rock n Roll history, Artist Development and Research. She is completing a PhD at University of Birmingham on vinyl record culture, and freelances in Artist Management.

Academy Meeting

What’s the deal with Coronavirus?

 

Of course, coronavirus has sadly impacted many of our local venues and arts centres, but with several of them having recently received Creative Scotland funding, and Edinburgh will surely be quick to get back on its feet.

Online learning: Since March we’ve swapped the studio for home and come September we’re confident we’ll be in a great position to offer flexible, online learning to students should we need to. We’re also spreading out, finding new spaces for learning so classrooms can be bigger and class sizes smaller. We were quick to adapt to the changes back in the Spring, and received some hugely positive feedback from our students.

Come September we’re readily adapting, in a great position to provide optional online learning and small class sizes should we need to. There’s still space on many of our courses for 2020/21 and we really look forward to hearing from you!

Group tutor sessions and live online performances have kept me feeling involved and uplifted during these crazy times
– Ella Crossland, Exeter student, April 2020.

new year new lockdown academy of music songwriting

How do I apply?

It’s simple. Just fill out a short online form, and we will get back to you in the following few days.

Take me to the application form.

 

And if you have any more questions or queries, feel free to to in touch with our friendly team!  We’ll get back to you as soon as possible, and we really look forward to hearing from you, about your musical experience and your musical interests.

 

Contact us 


hnc music hip hop rap pathway scotland ams hnd course steg g

Introducing a new Hip Hop and Rap pathway for our HND in Music

We’re adding a hip-hop and rap specific pathway to our popular HND course in Scotland, with acclaimed rapper Steg G joining the team to  lead on the module.

We’re so excited to announce a brand-new instrument specific specialism to our widely-popular HND Music course. Hip-hop and Rap will launch for the upcoming academic year for 2020/21, and will be led by industry professionals.  

The course will involve the same care and attention we apply to our contemporary instrument specific classes in songwriting, drums, guitar and more. Uniquely, it will also offer students weekly classes covering songwriting techniques, style analysis and live performance workshops to improve technical aptitude and theoretical understanding. 

Our Scotland team have been working diligently with leading industry professionals over the past year to finally provide this course in an area typically overlooked in music education and we hope that we can continue to not only help prospective students reach their own goals but also provide expert industry experience and advice to prepare them for work as a full-time musician and artist. 

Joining the AMS team in the near year to help deliver the module is Steven Gilfoyle (otherwise known as Steg G). Steg needs little introduction; he has performed with such acts such as 50 Cent and Kayne West over the years and is widely known in Scotland, having won the SAMA award for best hip-hop artist in 2019. 

Steven also works alongside Sunny Govan, a community based radio station based in Glasgow, and has a strong background in community development and education. AMS are so excited for him to be part of the team and look forward to developing and expanding the course alongside him in the years to come.

hip hop rap pathway scotland ams hnd course steg g

The Hip-hop and Rap pathway promises:

  • Develop and refine your lyric and writing skills
  • Improve your live performance and production skills
  • Gain experience as a hip-hop artist

Find out more about the HND in Music on the AMS course page.

 

Why hip hop and rap?

Hip-hop is an under taught and under-acknowledged topic in music education, and indeed other kinds of education. No other mainstream music college or further education centre has a course or pathway dedicated to it specifically, and it’s a gap we really want to fill.

Hip-hop originated in the Bronx in New York City in the 70’s and 80’s in marginalised communities of African Americans and Latinto’s predominantly. The culture has since grown into a global phenomenon and arguably the most commercially successful music genre currently. It has influences in street culture, various other music genres, clothes and fashion, dance, and even hairstyles – this all stems from its cultural origins. Critically, while hip hop must be understood first and foremost as an Afircan American/black genre and culture, the music has taken various forms across the world. 

It began as a way for the marginalised to express their condition and experience, it later became more of a commodified global entity. However the power of the forms of hip hop, and rap specifically, as a means of expression is huge – rap involves powerful lyrical play, fascinating linguistic technique; parody, self-reflection, 

Emerging recently have been academic fields focusing on hip hop itself, and specifically the role of a “hip hop pedagogy” (teaching). Hip hop pedagogy argues for the use of hip-hop and rap texts (songs, music video, lyrics) in the teaching of other traditional subjects such as literature or history. While this isn’t quite how we will teach it – focusing on more practical aspects of making your own hip-hop music – we hope this critical understanding of the subject will underpin the work we do. 

We think it’s an under-valued topic all-round, and we hope we can shine some much needed attention on the benefits and cultural impact of this music form, and help students with other aspects of their music practice.

As we lead up to the start of the HND in September, we plan to bring you much more content surrounding the huge impact of hip hop and rap in the world. Stay tuned!

HipHop HND Pathway

About the HND in Music 

Our unique selling point has always been supporting students with their chosen pathway – the HND, available at AMS centres in Glasgow or Edinburgh, is a perfect example of this.

Accredited by the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA), the HND is written in partnership with education professionals and industry experts, reflecting the current music industry and allows for further progression onto higher levels of study, expanding career opportunities and personal development.

All our tutors and staff are working in music, and our courses are both delivered by and written by musicians. With that comes a great community, common goals and an immediate industry focus that you won’t get at your run of the mill college.

  • Pathway-specific tuition with professional musicians, now including Hip-Hop & Rap
  • Gain a working, comprehensive knowledge of the music industry
  • Perform and organise your own gig in collaboration with other musicians
  • Compose, arrange and record your own music using industry standard software
  • Exclusive access to our Higher Education enrichment programme
  • HNC and HND Units

Find out more on the course page.