Composing

Discuss, share content, offer tips and advice on hardware, software, style, strategies, process, work-flow and the business of scoring a film, video or theater production

Brandi Thomas
Question About Sample Libraries

Hey guys, does anyone know where I can get some decent synth pads and maybe an organ? Thanks!

Joel Irwin

If you mean a church organ, I use the one created by Propeller Island and sold by Ilio (http://www.ilio.com/products/ilio-samplelibrary/cathedralorgan). Here is a good sample of my work using those sa...

Expand comment
Jonathan Price

Hey Brandi, Omnisphere is a synth workhorse. Also check out U-he, Heavyosity, and Output, but Omnisphere is a great Swiss-army-knife to start with if you don't have it.

Karthi Karunanidhi

try zebra brandi

Brandi Thomas

Awesome. Thanks so much, guys!

Andrew Perry
In an ideal world...

There are several good groups on facebook, so I made this page for pretty much anything to do with film score (keep it relevant) in an attempt at an idealistic facebook group. Some pages are known for "over policing", that's why the only rule is to be a decent human being! Have a lovely day all! htt...

Expand post

Joel Irwin
The End

The end comes when your score is taken to the mixing session and the film's audio track is combined (in stereo or surround 5.1/7.1) with the dialog, adr, and foley/sound effects. This is the point where what you hear is music at a level which is much lower compared to the other audio. As composers,...

Expand post

Joel Irwin

The issue is bigger than composing - it permeates the whole film industry (except acting of course). We have great film producers/directors here in Houston that have seen the competitive issue first h...

Expand comment
Brandi Thomas

I agree with most of your comments, Joel, but I have to ask about your last comment. When you said, "... but also try simultaneously moving in directions of less resistance," did you mean to imply tha...

Expand comment
Brandi Thomas

Glad everyone is enjoying the article!

James T. Sale

Sadly Shirley Walker is gone due to cancer but yes, she was outstanding and her career never got the traction it deserved. Thanks for posting Brandi!

Joel Irwin

Brandi - I meant that neither women or men should focus in on feature length studio films and just concentrate on that. Sometimes while pitching for studio features it could be useful and sometimes pr...

Expand comment
Joel Irwin
Saxes

Techie question for the composers.  I have a bunch of free sax sets (including the one that came with Kontakt and the bigcat/iowa sax).  IMHO they don't sound particularly realistic.  I am willing to buy saxes either by themselves or part of a larger woodwind/horn product.  I much prefer to have bot...

Expand post

Jonathan Price

If you have a wind or breath controller (I use a WX5), SampleModeling is pretty great. https://soundcloud.com/jonathanprice/detective-partner-hero-4...

Expand comment
Dan Mitchell

This one from Embertone has a pretty descent solo sax. "The Sensual Sax" .It sounds great drenched in reverb and vibrato. Only $20http://www.embertone.com/instruments/sensualsax-ios.php

Jordan Joshua Kern
Composer looking for insight

Hi everybody...I'm brand new to stage32. I'm relatively green in the composing game, and I'd love some advice on how to get more experience. Any tips? Feel free to connect & drop me a PM, or just comment back. Thank you!

Jordan Joshua Kern

Thanks for such a thorough and thoughtful response, Joel. This is great information that I'll take to heart. Much appreciated.

Joel Irwin

You are welcome. We each have various motivations for our creative processes and come from different backgrounds. Similar to you, I started in a rock band back in the 1960s but moved in a totally diff...

Expand comment
Brandi Thomas

Hey Jordan! Do you have examples of anything you've composed (whether for film or for a concert setting)? Step one, get a few samples of your work uploaded so people can see your skill set where it cu...

Expand comment
Jordan Joshua Kern

Thanks for the tips, Brandi! Great advice.

Brandi Thomas

Sure thing, Jordan. Anytime!

Sai Natarajan
HZ Masterclass

So, who here's signed up for Hans Zimmer's masterclass?

Joel Irwin

Sounds promising. I have found two major considerations when choosing a key. First has to do with mainly scoring for live performance. While highly trained and seasoned professionals can play pretty m...

Expand comment
Andrew Piland

I'm enjoying it so far

Sai Natarajan

Indeed. The next video's a long time coming though :P

Vikki Flawith

I am! We've had 6 'lessons' so far as part of 'early access' and the rest will come when the course opens, I think. I enjoyed watching the videos, I think Hans is very open about his process. When he...

Expand comment
Brandi Thomas

Just signed up last week. I guess we're supposed to have full access on March 9th? Seems cool so far, just hoping they upload assignments/hands on work.

Hello oscar!!

What are your (3) favorite all time OSCAR winning scores?

Vladislav Nogin

Star Wars; Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid; Jaws.

Lucia Cascioli
What makes a great horror movie soundtrack? Via BBC
What makes a great horror movie soundtrack?
What makes a great horror movie soundtrack?
Horror movies and music have forged an unholy alliance over many decades - even before cinema's demons and scream queens actually had their own voices. The modern horror soundtrack can be traced back…
Aron Future

I find horror music easy to compose. When it comes to soundrack music it's my fav to compose.

Ken Gregory

Hi, Folks -
I'm a composer in Atlanta, and new to the site. Is there a place to post examples our music? www.800east.com

Joel Irwin

Ken, I am not a moderator but I suspect it is based on your 'intentions'. If your intention is promotion - you are want us to listen to your music or watch a film with your music in order to find some...

Expand comment
Jim Rieder

@Ken Gregory. You can post video and audio on your "Video & Audio Reels" tab on your home page. Like this;
https://www.stage32.com/profile/2246/reel

Colin Hussey

Not mentioned in this article is the influence of certain orchestral composers taking music in new directions in the early 20th Century. Arnold Schoenberg, who came up with the 12-tone system of writi...

Expand comment
Joel Irwin
Analysis Of A Score - How To Make Two Similar Scenes More Interesting

(note: this is long and provides detail analysis of a score.  See the end for a link to the MP3 and PDF score) I promised when I finished scoring my most recent film, I would provide some discussion/analysis to provide 'insight' on my composition method.  First, I want to digress to a 'game' I and m ...

Expand post

Turning the Hands of Time (2016)
Turning the Hands of Time (2016)
Directed by Gary Chason. With Mark Docherty, Mia Ruiz, Gary Chason, Travis Dunn. Desperate to save his pregnant wife from being killed by a bloodthirsty member of a Mexican drug cartel, a distraught d…
Joel Irwin
Silence Is Golden

As a composer, one of the things I have learned to 'go by' is that I score when there is no dialog and selectively score under dialog (often based on the 'wishes' of the filmmaker/director or based on the outcome of the spotting session).  But I have rarely if ever seen a part of a scene where there...

Expand post

Brandi Thomas

Glad you enjoyed it, Steven!

Joanna Karselis

Really interesting read, thanks for sharing!

Brandi Thomas

Awesome! Glad you guys like it. Joanna, what did you find interesting about it?

Joanna Karselis

Well, I'd read a little about his journey into film music before, but hearing more details about how he got into the scene was insightful. His attitude interested me the most though; I think I'll be a...

Expand comment
Brandi Thomas

Hey Joanna! Sorry for the late reply here. I had to re-read the part where he said he didn't know/understand why Tim Burton wanted to work with him. In my head I was like, "BECAUSE YOU'RE DANNY ELFMAN!"