Tagged: reposts

Anatomy of a Tear-Jerker

Following up on my last post about sad music, here’s a great article from the Wall Street Journal about some of the musical secrets behind Adele’s Grammy-winning smash hit “Someone Like You.” Emotionally intense music, whether happy or sad, releases massive amounts of dopamine in the pleasure centers of our brains, acting like a drug and making us yearn for another dose. Intensely sad music behaves just like happy music in this sense—it causes physiological reactions in our brain that keep us coming back for more.

The article also details a couple of musical tricks that help to intensify the emotion, including the humble appoggiatura. In a study 20 years ago, the psychologist John Sloboda found this seemingly minor accent present in 18 out of 20 (unnamed) tear-jerkers. As the song’s co-writer Dan Wilson told Minnesota Public Radio, neither he nor Adele knew what an appoggiatura was when they were working on “Someone Like You.” They used it instinctively. As Wilson said, “Hey, if I had a scientific method for making a heartbreaking hit, I would do it every day… But it’s not so easy.”

Girl With the Dragon Tattoo Stems

Photo by Rob Sheridan, L.A. Times

This just in: Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross have made the stems from five Girl With the Dragon Tattoo cues available at Tunecore. They’re up until March 31st, 2012, so download and enjoy.

Aslo, if you like these two, the L.A. Times  interviewed Reznor back in December.

Incidentally, I haven’t seen The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
yet, but I plan to sometime this week. I’m rapidly getting caught up on my list of possible best scores of 2011, and I’ll fill you all in soon. (For the record, I’m not anticipating GWDT will make the list, but Trent and Atticus did win the Oscar last year, so I feel obliged to consider it.)

Finding Scoring Jobs Online

Photo by Paul N

Here’s another great post from Film and Game Composers, listing sites where you can search for potential work. Well worth a read:

Possibly one of the most asked questions “I need experience in scoring to get a proper job doing it, but I can’t get experience, as I can’t find anyone anywhere who will let me score for them.”

We’ve all had this problem. Heres a list of sites where you can find jobs online.

Read the full article at Film and Game Composers.com.

Indie Film Doesn’t Have To Suck

Photo by Gregg Bucken-Knapp

The following post is from Seattle’s own Ben James and his Dilettante Douchebag blog:

We’ve all experienced it, struggling to sit through the uneven, incomprehensible film offerings of our compatriots. To quote local film maker Geets Romo, “If that was a fight, they would have stopped it.” But there is so much good stuff coming out of the Seattle indie film scene it’s clear that indie film does not have to be lame.

Read the rest of the article at dilettantedouchebag.com

“Stairway To Heaven” Song Analysis

Bobby Owsinski has a nice little exploration of Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway To Heaven” in his Big Picture Production Blog. Sure, we’ve all heard the song a million times, but it’s really interesting structurally. And as Bobby points out, it has a surprisingly huge sound for such a sparse arrangement (only 7 instruments).

Being a total theory geek, I wish he’d evaluated the chords and music, but perhaps that’s something I’ll do in the near future. In the meantime, here’s Owsinski’s analysis.

Compose Something Every Day

Here’s a great tip from fellow composer Jeffrey P. Fisher. Be sure to sign up for his free weekly music business success tips:

Image courtesy of Carlos Sotelo

The best way to make sure you get the most from your talent is to use it. So, write a piece of music every day. This doesn’t need to be extravagant or even complete, rather just put your first thoughts down on paper, HDD, disc, etc. Make composing part of your daily routine. Not everything you do will be “good”, but the exercise will yield some bits and pieces that you can later turn into something special.

Too many people believe they must be in a creative mood to compose. It’s infinitely easier to procrastinate than to just start working. I fall prey to this distraction occasionally myself. But I’ve learned to work through it. You can’t be seduced by this unfortunate behavior either. You must banish those “ifs” and “buts” and start writing. That’s the key. Just begin and see where it takes you.

Read more at Fish(er) Tales