An interview series with leading Motion Picture & Television Industry Composers 
Film & Television Composers score music to accompany a motion picture for film or television. This could include dramatic underscore as well as popular songwriting. The traditional role of a film composer is to provide the orchestral dramatic underscore, and only more recently has the popular soundtrack begun to stand on its own.
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Pictured (Under): "The Wrecking Crew"

Alf Clausen | Composer *

Alf Clausen: The Simpsons' Secret Weapon

What would a normal "Simpsons" work schedule be like for you?

quote-leftWhen we're on a week-to-week schedule, what I will normally do is spot an episode on Friday afternoon. The music editor will prepare my timing notes on Saturday and Sunday and then I'll start writing, usually Monday morning if it's a "normal" episode of "30 cues or less." If it's more than that, I'll sometimes start on Sunday to get a jump on things and then I'll put in probably four long days—Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday—of maybe nine in the morning until 11:30 or midnight every day. And then we spot the next week's episode Friday afternoon again and I'll record the cues that I've composed during the past week on Friday night starting at seven. We usually have anywhere from a three to a three-and-a-half hour recording session to do those 30 cues. Every week is different on "The Simpsons" as you know. It really is dependent on whether it's straight underscore type of recording that I have to do or if I have to record vocals—if I have to do orchestral sweeteners of songs that I've written in the past. So, it's never a dull moment.

Tue, 06/18/2019 - 18:02
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Don Davis | Composer *

Don Davis: Revisiting The Matrix

You recently worked on the score to "The Matrix Reloaded", and used similar material from "The Matrix". Tell me a bit about the elements you used to create this score.

Well, the Wachowski Brothers None of us were interested in abandoning what had been established in the first picture; we wanted to expand on it, just like the Wachowskis expanded on their palette. So I was definitely looking to see how I could take those motifs and post-modern concepts and pursue something bigger and more ambitious.

Fri, 11/10/2017 - 08:17
Roddy Bottum | Composer/Musician

Getting to Know Roddy Bottum

Coming from two successful rock groups (Faith No More and Imperial Teen), how did you make the jump into film music?

I grew up in Los Angeles, and was always into film music as a kid. I moved to San Francisco to attend the film program at San Francisco State to learn film production. San Francisco in the 1980s was a thriving art community - so it made sense to work in a lot of different fields - so I joined a band. The band took me on the road - away from the camera, and the area where I could make films. It ended up being a fulltime job for many years. So I just stopped doing film for a long time while I was touring, since Faith No More turned into a round-the-clock, throughout-the-year, fulltime job. Now, after about 15-years, it makes sense. Since I want to stay home and not do as much touring, I can get back into film.

Mon, 08/21/2017 - 08:02
Tyler Bates | Composer

Get Tyler: An Interview with Tyler Bates

By working on "Get Carter" you had an opportunity to take a recognizable and respected theme and re-approach it. How was it to take someone else's work and mold it to be your own?

I enjoyed it because I liked Budd's original score which I think is an interesting work of music in and of itself. He wrote the score nearly 30 years ago and recorded the entire bit for a meager 400 pounds. This includes songs, vocalists and an eclectic cast of musicians. I have a great deal of respect for any artist who doesn’t allow money to govern the extent of how far they will go to achieve the ultimate end results. I thought the opportunity to arrange Roy Budd’s theme for the year 2000 was great fun. Additionally, the visual style of the film lent itself to many interesting sonic possibilites, so I was able to incorporate a lot of unique elements into the piece as well as changing the melody instrument. Budd originally played it on a harpsichord. I used a marxophone to give it a different sound. The director and I talked about acquiring the rights to rearrange and re-orchestrate the original Budd theme early on in the project. I had yet to have the opportunity to do a project like that, so I seized it!

Sun, 05/21/2017 - 08:06