ICOM alumnus gives back
ICOM alumnus Ali Aiman, who is a producer, songwriter and performing artist educator shared his experience in career development:
“My learning experience at the International College of Music ( ICOM) was memorable, simply because of the diversity that I encountered there.
Diversity not only in terms of the different nationalities of my fellow classmates, but also with regard to the musical influences and talent that they brought with them to the classroom.
It was literally like a melting pot of music culture.
One of my fondest memories during my time as a student of ICOM was performing for the Earth, Wind and Fire Tribute Concert, which was attended by the band itself.
It was a good hands- on experience of what was to be expected as a professional musician in the industry.
I will always be grateful to the lecturers who moulded and pushed me to realise my potential and for helping me become the musician I am today.
ICOM provided me the opportunity to further my studies at Berklee College of Music through its Berklee Transfer Programme ( BTP).
The vast array of classes that were offered at Berklee played a huge part in equipping me with the necessary knowledge and skills to survive in this challenging industry.
I graduated Summa Cum Laude with a BMus in Contemporary Writing and Production. Upon graduating, I stayed in Boston for another three years, working as a music director for a children’s theatre company.
I also worked as a recording engineer and took on many freelance jobs as a composer, producer and arranger.
After six years of studying and working abroad, I decided to return home.
Getting started wasn’t easy but I am a firm believer that if you push hard enough, your efforts may come to fruition sooner or later.
My education, training and experience provided me with skill sets that enabled me to wear multiple “hats”. Since then, I’ve performed regularly as a sessionist, arranged and produced music for local acts and written jingles and music for visual media.
I am also a music producer, singer- songwriter and performing artiste.
I have had the opportunity to perform extensively not only at prominent venues around KL, but also at music festivals.
I have released an EP, Overture, and I am in the midst of completing a second one.
Thankfully, my songs have been played consistently on local radio stations and online streaming platforms.
The urge to share what I have learnt and experienced prompted me to return to my alma mater, ICOM, and to explore how I can be an influence to a new generation of musicians.
Following the footsteps of my lecturers in educating the younger generation of budding musicians, I now teach a combination of theory and production classes both in the Foundation year and the BMus ( Hon) programme.
I feel that music education is important because it provides music students with the necessary skills to enter any aspect of the music industry.
It’s fair to say that my teaching experience has been an enlightening one so far, especially because of the students that I’ve had the opportunity to teach.
I think current and prospective students can take heart in the fact that ICOM alumni have done and are continuing to do well in their music career paths.
My advice for budding musicians would be to keep pushing for what you believe in.
If you’re serious about having a career in music, don’t underestimate the importance of having a proper music education.
If you want an all- rounded music education, ICOM is the place to be.”
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