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Tips & Insights for Composers #3 | Is composing for trailers easy? | Brand X Music


I think a myth we should talk about is the myth that this is easy and because it’s fun,
it’s the greatest job in the universe Because half of that is completely and utterly true This is the greatest job but it’s hard work, yeah, and you know For me one of the reasons that it was hard work especially early on your little bit further down the road
by the time I met you was you put everything you have into your version one You pour your heart and soul into it and you live with it and you love it and you don’t want to
play something for somebody that you don’t believe in and then you play the version 1 and it goes in the trash And it is your job to see what it is they didn’t like about version 1 and go home and pick yourself up and make a version 2 And the version 2 has to have every bit of the passion and every bit of the excitement and every bit of the inspiration that your version one had Otherwise the client won’t hear. And that’s really really hard and I had to make that adjustment of when your art becomes commerce then it’s completely subjective at that point You can believe in, you can think what you want about it but the time you put a price tag on it,
what you think about it doesn’t matter as much anymore So the adjustment of saying “this guy doesn’t know anything about music” and “yes he is right because he’s paying me to bring his project to life” That was really difficult for me and you know,
that’s one of the hardest things. So that transitions is one of my favorite things when i talk to young composers and you know they always want to know how they can get the jobs that you’re getting and what do I do and I said we’ll listen the first thing First thing I’m looking for is passion. I’m looking for not so much
to “Do you want to do this for a living” or “Is this something that you want to do” – but “Is this something that you cannot do”
– Right And that there’s a big difference between somebody wanting to do something and
somebody else who doesn’t have a choice “I have to do this. This is who I am” And once when you find that passion that’s going to be the fuel that gets you from version 1 to version 2
to version 3 This is who I am, this is what I do whether you’re paying me or not is irrelevant. This is what i’m going to do anyways And i think that’s a real important part of this whole process that people need to know this isn’t a job, right? this is not a career path. This is somebody out there saying “you create something that I want to use and leverage as my widget, my product”. And so, at that point you have to decide if it’s for sale you have to decide if you’re going to part with that and once you do, and once somebody
hires you to do something then it has to be in a sense depersonalized and you’re selling that part of your passion and you’re saying that this thing is for sale and now whoever’s buying it is right. And how you feel about that is going to take a backseat and that’s a hard thing for some people to learn, you know, passionate people they figured this is my opus,
this is great piece of music and then they submitted to the client the client goes “yeah I don’t think so”, “I don’t think that’s what we’re looking for” and for that, not to be taken extremely personally is a real hard lesson to learn So in one sense your passion is your fuel. But in another sense that passion has to
be separated from the job So that you can actually finish the job and you can learn from what they will really looking for And a lot of times you’re going to have to alter your music in such a way that it actually does serve the product one of One of the things that I learned about that was as a young composer, I would go into a meeting
with the agenda of “I need to tell the filmmaker what I have to say” And that was a mistake, because my agenda in the meeting is to go in and hear from the filmmaker what he needs from me that’s just a different way of approaching it you know, when we’re taking music inside
and we’re putting it outside it’s “Here look what I did” But and then when you say
“Ahh it’s not my favorite flavor” I can say “Well, fine!”, or i can say “Well what don’t you like about it and how can i make it better next time?” So that’s just maturity and understanding that
gets you there after all. And you never really get great at that ever, it’s still hard I mean even in us, you know, in our team when we play something for each other the first time you still feel like it’s the first piece of music you’ve ever played for somebody. Because a lot of times you do put a lot into it you’re going “Well wait till Tom hear this one” And Tom is like “yeah I don’t get it” That doesn’t happen very often I think the other thing too is that you know it and the reality of this is you go to version 9 and then everybody runs out of time and they go back to version one anyway so you know a bad idea thrown in the trash it has hope anyway so for me that’s part of the joy of the thing too is it’s so much work it’s so difficult it’s so personal it’s so risky from a personal you put so much of yourself out there to be whipped but then when it’s all done and the queue signed off and you’ve created a beautiful piece of music and you know you gave it everything you had and you know that all your buddies gave it everything they had to try to make your piece as good as it could there’s not a better feeling

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