I’m done, finished, complete.
There’s not much more to say that hasn’t been posted here except for a couple of “lessons learned” that I thought might be interesting to share. No matter how many projects I do, there’s always something different, something whacky, something out of left field that happens that wasn’t expected.
I don’t think I’ll ever “perfect” doing this … I don’t think anyone will. But, that’s what makes it fun huh?
So here it goes… in no particular order, the top 3 lessons I learned on this latest project:
- Melodic scores are not for everyone. Talk to the majority of composers out there and they’ll let you know that a score with strong thematic melodies is what drives a picture. Well, it seems as though the trend, more and more, is to get a score that has at least SOME melodic elements, but not everywhere. I wouldn’t, by any means, label the score as “wallpaper” music, but the melodies are subdued in places where I’d have tended to want them to be more prominent.
- Feedback is king. Regular feedback is crucial and probably could have prevented some luke-warm reviews and somewhat significant back-tracking. I fell victim to the old axiom: “ASSUME” makes an ASS out of U and ME by not pushing for more immediate feedback on draft cues by assuming that no news means good news… (instead of assuming that no news means that the director is incredibly busy with other projects and hasn’t had a chance to listen to what I’ve sent).
- Get to the definitive “sound” by any means possible and as early as possible. Being able to put a a style, genre, orchestration and harmonic language under my thumb could have gotten things cranking a lot sooner. The sound we finally got to was arrived at after three other musical style paths were explored through draft cues. I do have some cool clips that I can keep in my catalogue as a result of that work, but those activities did take up a lot of time that could have been used elsewhere.
Again, I can’t say enough about how much I enjoyed doing this project. Working with a competent director who has a strong interpretation of the screenplay and picture was fantastic. Even though not being able to interpret a clear articulation of the musical “sound” was a hurdle in getting traction early on, once I understood what he was hearing in his “mind’s-ear”, we got to working quite well.
It’s always an adventure, it’s always fun and it’s always an opportunity to learn something new.
When all that stops happening, then I’ll know it’s time to do something else with my life.