||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (August 2010)|
|Birth name||Simon Alexander Neil|
31 August 1979 |
Irvine, North Ayrshire, Scotland
|Origin||Irvine, North Ayrshire, Scotland|
|Genres||Alternative rock, post-hardcore|
|Occupation(s)||Singer, songwriter, record producer|
|Instruments||Vocals, guitar, bass guitar, banjo, mandolin, sitar, piano, saxophone, harmonica, melodica, mellotron, synthesizer|
|Associated acts||Biffy Clyro
Born in Irvine, North Ayrshire, Scotland, Simon Neil formed Biffy Clyro in 1995 at 15 years old recruiting Kilmarnock-born James Johnston and someone known only as Barry on bass and drums respectively, calling themselves Screwfish. Barry was soon replaced by Ben Johnston, James's twin brother, and Biffy Clyro was effectively formed. In 1997, the trio moved to Glasgow, where Neil studied Electronics with Music at the University of Glasgow. He also Studied Film and TV for a year before leaving to pursue music full time. By then, Simon's musical tastes had expanded; In 2000, the band were spotted at the Unsigned Bands stage at T in the Park by a Beggars Banquet representative. Soon after, the band was signed to the independent Beggar's Banquet.
Biffy Clyro have since released six albums, signed to a major record label, and toured relentlessly. Neil has stated that Biffy Clyro lyrics often come from phrases he writes down in a notebook he keeps by his bed.
It was announced in late 2008 that the Duke was to make a return in 2009 with the follow-up album and second in the trilogy, Duke Pandemonium. The first single from the second album, "Kid Gloves" was released on 9 February 2009.
Neil lives in Ayr with his wife Francesca, whom he married at St Columba Church in Ayr on 5 January 2008. A tattoo on Neil's chest, God Only Knows What I’d Be Without You, refers both to the Beach Boys song lyric and to his Wife. It was the first song they danced to.
Musical equipment used
The following is a list of musical equipment used by Simon Neil:
- Fender Standard Stratocasters – Various different Mexican models, including White, Red, Sunburst (with neck pickup & controls removed), Black, and Metallic Blue.
- Fender 1960 Custom Shop Stratocasters – Fiesta Red, Frost Metallic, Lake Placid Blue, and White.
- Fender 50s Stratocaster Relic
- Fender Telecaster Standard – USA model, owned by James Johnston, three tone sunburst, can be seen in the music video for "Living is a Problem Because Everything Dies".
- Fender Telecaster Custom '62 – Japanese model, three tone sunburst, can be seen in the music video for "Only one word comes to mind".
- Squier Simon Neil Signature Stratocaster
- Patrick Eggle New York – Red.
- Gretsch White Falcon Used live for the song "Diary of Always" and is seen in the music video for "Folding Stars"
- Gibson ES-335 - used live for "God & Satan".
- BOSS TU-2 Chromatic Tuner
- BOSS MD-2 Distortion
- BOSS MT-2 Metal Zone
- BOSS DD-6 Digital Delay x2 
- BOSS LS-2 Line Selector
- Electro Harmonix Micro POG
Previous effects pedals
- Peavey Delta Blues Combo into a Marshall MF400B Cabinet
- Fender Hot Rod Deville 4x10 Combo into a Hayden Peacemaker 4x12
- Marshall 1959SLP Head
- Peavey Classic Head and Peavey Classic 412 Cabinet
- Hayden MoFo 30W tube head with Hayden 4x12
- Biffy Clyro Biography on Beggar's Banquet USA
- Ayshire Post, 9 January 2008, Sweet music
- BiffyTabs Equipment – Simon
- Biffy Clyro - Simon Neil Guitar Rig Gear and Equipment