VIBE ONLINE | July 2020

In early July, a group of regular VIBE participants and tutors ‘met’ online to explore this weird and wonderful world – read on to find out how it worked and to listen to some of the music!🎡


Our creative learning project VIBE has been going for seven years in many different forms. It brings together young musicians from any background or ability to create and perform new music collectively. There have been many iterations of VIBE, from the courses in Edinburgh, Glasgow and Aberdeen to partnerships with Drake Music, CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health) and reaching out through our community residency. Out of necessity, VIBE 2020 had to be reimagined, but there was also a curiosity to explore what the online world has to offer music makers creatively. 

Inclusivity, creativity and a safe and supportive environment are at the heart of VIBE. So while we knew that VIBE ONLINE would look very different, we knew it was essential to keep these values central to the project.


Using the video conferencing software Zoom, we met online over the course of four days. Each day consisted of a morning and afternoon session of an hour and a half each. These sessions ran much like a regular VIBE course, with animateur Paul Griffiths leading the group through some improvisation, suggesting musical riffs, rhythms and melodies to build on and then small group work with tutors working on the participants' ideas. At the end of each day we came together to share our ideas with the rest of the group.

“I had no idea how VIBE ONLINE would work, but now I’ve done it, I think I’ve enjoyed it more! I feel free to try things out in my own space. Making a mistake online is not as worrying to me as making a mistake in front of a group.” – Participant


Alongside formal workshops, the jamming and socialising that happens outside of sessions is an important part of VIBE. To recreate this online, we had an hour long virtual lunchbreak, where participants could eat their lunch and drop in and out as they pleased. We had a great time playing Pictionary over Zoom, as well as an open mic and quiz session!

“I found that over the course of lockdown I’ve become a much more introverted person…but I didn’t feel like that when I was doing VIBE. I felt like I was coming out of my shell more and that was big for me.” – Participant


Sound engineer and musician Mark Neal joined us for all the sessions, recording, mixing and even sampling Paul’s voice to create what one of the participants named ‘The Paul Piano’! Everyone on the course embraced the weird and wonderful sounds that making music online produces. They found ways of working through issues of latency and internet glitches to create a new musical vocabulary which we think works really well! You can have a listen to some tracks here –

VIBE ONLINE - Stuck in the Middle

“Surprisingly the delay added an extra layer to the music” - Participant

VIBE ONLINE - Mistique


We’re thrilled that the very first VIBE ONLINE pilot was a success and are currently exploring how we can share this fantastic project more widely in the future. We also know that we want our online version of VIBE to continue alongside our ‘live’ courses – so if you’re interested in hearing the latest on and offline VIBE news, let us know by clicking here.

VIBE online is possible thanks to Baillie Gifford, our Creative Learning Partner. To learn more about the work we do with their support click here.