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Thread: My 1st 'film'-score!!

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    Cool My 1st 'film'-score!!

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    One of my friends is a last year student on the belgian movie-school-kinda thing. He's studying on how to write scripts for mainly tv-shows. Anyway, the guy is really talented, and always inspires me whenever we 'play' together. (he tries to sing. )

    So what's the deal now: he's got a project, sort of endwork project or thesis I guess, and they asked him if he had music in mind for it, and if he could get it. And that's where I come in. There's no money involved, but it's what I want to do, I can record it at home, have got enough friends that play decent to get most instruments I want, and the endresult will be sent to the national tv.

    So it's mainly for the experience that I'm in on it. Maybe a future reference, if I get it to sound decent.

    The story is about a guy living near the woods, in the woods lives some sort of an amazon sect. Needs kindof dark music... Script is about 150 pages. He'll get me the details soon...
    Any tips? Haven't got any specific questions, but comment or ideas are always welcome.

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    Always good to obtain additional experience. Start from the bottom and work your way up (I'm talkin about the music).

    Pretty hard to come up with music to match a script, I find that when writing like this I have to be really absorbed in the project. You really do have to inspired to write the music (I hate it when people say that), the more you force yourself to do it the harder it becomes.

    I hate working to deadlines, it hinders my final results as this is always a factor playing at the forefront of my mind. When you can't be having fun and enjoying yourself at what in the first place fills you with enthussiasm, somethings gotta be wrong.

    Then when you have the material it either seems not good enough to match the work your placing it with or too good and you want to keep it for yourself.

    You just can't win (well I can't).

    As obvious as it sounds remember to enjoy yourself and not get to worked up if things don't work out. Consider it a challange that may well lead to other things, good luck,
    Krystof.

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    I've written music for 4 independant films and a few stage plays. One film won an award for best audio production and one film was picked up as an option by Sony, but nothing came of it - oh well. I did alot of research to prepare the best material I could (including reading books on film composing - and reading articles by Jeff Rona, a successful composer) and I learned a few key things:

    1. In film music there is always (or at least almost always) a musical theme - this means a specific melody/rhythem/hook that is repeated through out the film. Note: there are variations to the theme (slower, melody with no drums, melody as string line rather than horns lines, etc.)

    2. The music must support the visual without stealing the scene. Don't try to make the music "too large". Often a subtle "drone" can create an impact

    3. Be very open to suggestions from the director, producer or any other "key person" the film is thier "baby" you're just the hired help - don't develop an attitude if your killer idea doesn't meet their vision

    4. Minor chords create darkness/danger, major chords create lightness/joy, diminished chords create suspense - resolve out of a diminished chord to enter new scenes

    5. Try to create a "pop" title song (to run over the end credits) - if the film does gain attention this song may get airplay.

    6. Watch alot of films and really pay attention to how the music supports the scenes - pay attention to who does the music - Danny Elfman (Batman Returns, Edward Scissorhands, Simpson TV theme) is by far my favorite composer - he came out of the "rock" band Oingo Boingo

    Composing for film, in my opionion is the ultimate gig - good luck.

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    Thanks for the tips.

    Krystof. Deadline gets me worried too. It'll have to be finisfhed in a month. (half of june) Still, the guy is pretty relaxed. (Think he only has to deliver a script and the main ideas of the music. We'll see...) I'm really in it for the challenge and the experience. And I'm studying composition in my spare time. Always nice to have good inspiration. I'm pretty sure the man will inspire me enough to make something nice...

    Mikeh, very nice tips. I'll keep them in mind. Any books you can recommend or where to find those articles etc? I'll check Danny Elfman. I like badalamenti alot. And Evan Lurie's new CD on Zorn's label... Very nice. Dark jazzy stuff.
    Again, very nice tips... Certainly not as oviuous as they seem...

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    Roel, the only book I still have is Music Scoring for TV & Motion Pictures, by Marlin Skiles. It was published in 1976 by Tab Books. I don't remember the other books I read, but I do remember it was hard to find the subject (I spent alot of time in used book stores and libraries).

    Jeff Rona writes articles for Keyboard Magazine - they are titled "reelworld". He has a website at www.reelworld-online.com

    Had I known you studied composition I would not have stated such basic concepts as minor vs. major chords, etc. I'm sure you already have an understanding of theory and the use scales to establish mood.

    Deadlines and last minute re-writes go with the process, but dealing with pressure and meeting deadlines can make you stronger as a musican/writer and more importantly as a person.

    Best of luck!!

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    Roel... I will write some for you if you like, and record it in my studio... I play everything... and am always looking for a fun project, in between pro stuff (and right now, im in between).......Im pretty good at that stuff.. For free,,,No obligations other than mentioning me in the credits. ...It's yours.....(If you want)... let me know, and I can bounce some Ideas off you...

    If you want to get in to this in depth, you can email me....

    adrrecordings@hotmail.com

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    A deep, synthy drone, with harmonic minor on top works great for dark stuff. You could add some bodhram and/or congas and get a jungle voodoo sound. Kinda sounds like demons gettin' it on with the serpent ladies from Madagascar.
    Scoring is a lot of fun. I've done a few jobs. The competition is fierce. Jingles are where the munny is at while waiting to break in to scoring.

    J

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    Originally posted by Jason001
    A deep, synthy drone, with harmonic minor on top works great for dark stuff. You could add some bodhram and/or congas and get a jungle voodoo sound.
    Kinda funny: the drone is what I'm supposed to do. It's even mentionned in the script: "a low organ-tone can be heard." and "the organ drone gets louder". (freely translated from dutch. )
    The guy who wrote it doesn't know the difference between synth and organ. I think he means a synth drone. But I'm gonna try a dirty B3 sample anyway.

    What do you mean with harmonic minor? Minor third?

    My harmony teacher suggested a minor second. Can't get much darker than that.

    The congas etc might be to rythmic. He wants a very slumbering danger to it. Very slow rhythm. I was thinking of other percussion stuff, if it needs more. (Don't know the name of it... Sorry. ) I think I'll just have the guy come over and help me decide on it...

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    That sounds cool.

    Sharpen the 7th of the natural minor ( aeolian ) scale and you have harmonic minor.

    J

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    Ofcourse. The scale... I'll keep it in mind when I'm fiddling around this weekend. Thanks.

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