Simon Ayton

so... I finally got my first kit after much begging and began bothering neighbours in 1983 inspired by Stewart Copland and my musical parents. I then trained as an electronic instrument technician before chucking it to focus on thumping stuff full-time.

Whilst recording and playing with local bands ‘Scarecrow Tiggy’ and ‘Zaibatsu’ in Melbourne, I couldn't resist the recording magazines on the floors of various studios and became obsessed with sound recording.

Started a home studio and worked on making decent recordings.

Buddies and I started contributing music for short film projects which then progressed to longer ones.

After lots of great gigs and fun touring around the place in Australia with my mates, I bailed to expand my mind travelling as much as possible in Asia and Europe ending in London where I developed my De-Vice' Plug-ins business making music software whilst engineering radio documentaries for BBC World Service Radio.

An album of material emerged out of my red London bedroom 'one solar day’ in 2001 and I headed to Berlin to launch it and stayed....

Time in Europe was spent playing and recording/producing records with any nice people I could find, like the awesome Kat Frankie and Aidan Bartley, engineering radio documentaries, doing live sound for touring bands, performing on TV and touring Europe which included playing Fringe Festival in Scotland. All fun.

Whilst playing with Punk band 'Cough', I became involved with a Berlin studio and lots of film and TV music started coming in. 

Forming the three piece band ‘Phirefones’ in Berlin, I helped run a pretty damn cool studio and together we created the music and mixed numerous international films including the multi-award winning ‘Muxmaeuschenstill’ (Engl: ‘Quiet as a Mouse’ GER 2004), ‘Street Thief’ (USA 2006) and ‘Wrecker’ (USA 2005) mixed at George Lucas’s Skywalker Sound ranch.

We also created the music and sound mixes on commercials and even sang and played on the ad for the launch of the new generation ‘MINI-D’ car in Europe. Cos I love MINIS.

In 2005 I spent some time in America working on the film 'Street Thief' and had the awesome chance to study drumming and teaching techniques with Jazz legend Joe Morello in New Jersey. Joe paid me the HUGE compliment of introducing me to his peers as “ a very fine and musical drummer...” I blushed...

After more than two dozen albums and film soundtracks ranging obscure to popular, from metal to electronic and folk I headed back to Australia for a holiday.

After smelling the roses, doing some gigs in Melbourne and showing kids the awesomeness of a life on the drums and contemplating my next adventure, the chance came up of working for Japanese musical instrument designer Roland in Sydney. Within days I packed my stuff into my 68' minivan and hit the road. (ok so i broke down just before the border and flew a few days later...)

I'm now very proud to be based on Sydney's lovely Northern Beaches and deeply involved with this great company developing the future of music creation tools, playing drums everyday, meeting and working with my drumming heroes and hopefully continuing to inspire future music makers.  Oh yeah, I love motorbikes and mini's of all shapes and sizes and I write a bunch of stuff on music and drumming. You can find my verbal meanderings here... get in touch!


In The Clouds