Music Monday – Simon El Khoury
This week’s Music Monday feature is Simon El Khoury.
After we noticed Simon’s post on Instagram, we knew we had to post it and get to know the drummer a bit better.
We asked Simon to tell us a bit about himself;
My name is Simon El Khoury, I’m almost 32 years old. I’m a graphic designer and a drummer.
I work as a freelance designer, session drummer, and I teach drums in my studio called “Pattern.” Pattern is the identity I created for myself and it covers both design and drums.
I’m also the co-founder of Pretzelogic band, a Sabian Cymbals Artist, and Mozart Chahine Ambassador.
Besides design and music, I’m into sports (especially football) and TV shows; when I’m home and not practicing, I’m either watching a football game or a TV Show.
I like to travel a lot, so whenever I can, you’ll see me checking in somewhere in the world!
Then we wanted to know more about his music career;
Well, it all started at a very young age. I have three older sisters and I used to spend a lot of time mainly with the youngest of them, listening to the music she likes. So early on I got introduced to a very wide variety of music from Michael Jackson, Ace Of Base, 1 2 3 Soleil, Magida Al Roumi, Wael Kfoury, Ragheb Alameh, and do you remember the Beat Machine Compilation Cassettes? I used to listen to those too.
Basically anything my sister liked, and I always thanked her for that! Then I started discovering music on my own; my early teen years were all about pop music especially boy bands, then rap emerged in my daily playlists, and later came the Rock/Metal genres during my mid-teens, and that’s when I decided I wanted to play drums.
I still listen to different styles till now, from pop, rock, funk, and jazz to Oriental music; and I guess we all agree that music is a matter of taste, you cannot control which music touches you. So you find people who strictly like 1 musical genre, as well as people who like many and appreciate all of them, and that’s me!
Did you get any professional training?
I started taking drum lessons when I was 15, at College Central’s Music School in Jounieh. My favorite memory there was in Grade 12 where I used to leave class 15 minutes early every Friday’s because I had drum lessons.
Later at university, I was majoring in Graphic Design at USEK and I also took drum lessons there for a short time, then enrolled in Mozart Chahine’s Music School, and that’s where I started taking drums very seriously. A couple of years later, I started teaching there before I stopped a couple of years ago to switch to teaching in my home studio.
Now I buy DVDs and watch online lessons to pick up new things and improve my skills, as well as always practicing the fundamentals, meeting with drummers to exchange knowledge and techniques, and enrolling in online or live masterclasses.
3- How did you come across doing what you do?
Listening and appreciating music since a very young age, watching bands on TV, meeting a couple of drummers in my entourage and getting “fascinated” by the instrument triggered my decision to start training. With time, music in general and drums specifically became a part of me, something that I don’t think I can ever let go of.
4- Who are some of your favorite musicians and what really inspires you?
My favorite musician is Steven Wilson, an English musician, singer, songwriter, and record producer, who first became known as the founder of the band Porcupine Tree. As for drummers, I can easily say I’m mostly influenced by 2 drummers, who play 2 very different styles by the way, Gavin Harrison and Benny Greb. I listen to a lot of genres and take inspiration from almost everything I listen to and watch.
5- What goal do you aim to achieve?
As a kid, you set a goal for yourself and every time you reach it, you set another one. That’s how it works, there’s no ultimate goal, there’s just a road that never ends, and you have to stay motivated and keep going to reach as many “check points” as you can, and every check point is rewarding in its own way. Two years ago I became a Sabian Artist (Thanks to Mozart Chahine’s initiative) and this has set the bar high for me. Now my goals are to be endorsed by more brands, play more gigs with Pretzelogic and take the band to the next level.
6- Would you like to add anything else?
I would like to thank you guys for the interview, you are no doubt one of the music industry pioneers in Lebanon, and I really appreciate how you guys support local talents.
Always looking for the humorous side of life
Copywriter, Copyeditor, Meme Maker, Blogger, Digital Media Manager