Monthly Archives: May 2016

Keeping weekly TV scores fresh

TVcomposersDV6-16For this season’s Emmy contenders issue, the editors at Variety posed an interesting question: When TV series run two, three, four or more seasons, how do the composers treat their characters and story arcs? Is it best to ground them in familiar musical territory, or should the scores reflect the changing, often expanding, storylines? I interviewed a wide range of composers to find out how they handled the challenge: Bear McCreary (Outlander), Blake Neely (The Flash), Joey Newman (The Middle), Jeff Beal (House of Cards), Ramin Djawadi (Game of Thrones), John Lunn (Downton Abbey) and Sean Callery (Homeland).

Music for trailers

TrailerMusicStoryDV“Trailers”: you know, those movie previews we used to call “coming attractions.” A long time ago, movies like Casablanca or 2001 would feature the music we would later hear when, weeks later, we saw the actual film. Not these days (most of the time, anyway). Music for trailers has become a big and very specialized business, as I discovered when researching this story for Variety. I could have written a story twice as long and not covered all of the fascinating details of this relatively new industry.