CHOOSING MUSIC FOR YOUR PROJECT


November 2020


No one can argue the importance of music in projects of any format. Whether a feature, Documentary, TV series, short stories or animation, music has a measurable impact on a story. Ever since the 1930’s, with the possibility to synchronize music with images, the role of music has increased, enhancing emotions, thrill, fears or drama.

Sometimes, the impact of music on a movie is such that listening to the song or music years later, brings back memories of the movie.


“Shirley Bassey” singing Goldfinger for 007, “Survivor” singing Eye of the Tiger for Rocky, or the very intriguing score from “Michel Legrand” for the Thomas Crown Affair.

The reasonable question is: Which of the two is helping the other?

Would Eye of the Tiger be a hit without the movie?

Would Rocky be a hit without the Survivor song?

There is no way of knowing for sure other than they are both, movie and song totally connected to each other. Let us be real, those examples in the volume of media content created every year are rather rare, the ultimate objective of a filmmaker is in fact to use the music to support a specific emotion to the story. The connection between a film and its music works when based on emotions. The filmmaker looking at the footage is always considering what can enhance an emotion, funny, sad, thrilling, romantic, fear, etc. It is all about emotions.

Another important factor is rhythm. The pace of the film sequences will also dictate the appropriate music to choose. Point in case, the car chase in Moscow from the “Bourne Supremacy”. Action packed sequences in the center of Moscow where the sound effects are predominant and the music in background is rather low at the beginning of the chase and becomes increasingly louder toward the end. Director Paul Greengrass and his editors have been using music in a very subtle way, in support of the energy and fast pace of the sequences. Will we remember what kind of music it was? Not a chance, but just imagine this chase without the music, it suddenly looses its intensity.


In another famous car chase 40 years earlier, Peter Yates directing “Bullitt” is not using music to enhance the chase but rather use the sound of engine and tires squeaking from McQueen’s Mustang to bring rhythm to the sequences and keep us tight on our chair watching it.

Sometimes, the pace of the sequence and its emotion are such that silence is the way to go. No sound effects no music can dramatically impact a scene.

The decision on music for your project is not only based on the genre and style but also on when to use it in a way that is adding to the story and not overwhelming it.

We have been illustrating what music can do on feature films but soundtrack on all other formats follow the same guidelines, documentaries, TV series, Investigation series, animations, the music is there to enhance emotions regardless of what they are.

We all remember the Lalo Schifrin score for "Mission Impossible", perfectly introducing the suspense and anxiety felt by the actors facing those missions in the popular TV series from the 1960s.

With a clear understanding of what you need as a filmmaker/producer of a project, remains where and how to acquire music. Do your homework, ask questions get a feel from a composer or company providing music for media. Do not make quick decision because of timing or budget, involve the music provider in the production process. Ask his opinion on your music choices, experienced composers for media know. Many filmmakers with limited budget would acquire music from a library and there are many offering that service, but even if your budget is that small, Music Partner can compose an original soundtrack to your project.

With its innovative model, Music Partner is also sharing the music publishing revenues with filmmakers and has currently a free subscription to its services for eligible filmmakers. Beyond all, the mission of a music provider is to support the filmmaker in his choices and suggest if need be, different options. A music provider should be on your side as a PARTNER.

Whether existing tracks from its library, Original scoring or music editing and audio post-production services, Music Partner is there for filmmakers and producers of all formats.

www.musicpartner.tv