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Topic: Need some advice from the pros around here........

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  1. #1
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    Need some advice from the pros around here........

    I\'m starting to use some of my wife\'s connections and have been asked to submit some music to a few managers and producers that rep or work with lower budget directors (budgets in the above a mil below 13 range).


    So my question is how much music do you advice I put on the disc (I was thinking of trying to stay close to 20 min). By the way, most of the people my stuff is going to do darker more quirky types of films, so I\'m not trying to have a general demo type of thing (not trying to cover all styles in one demo -- just trying to be strong and focused). So how much music would you recommend? And how varied do you think I should get with a focused \"solicited\" demo.

    Also, any type of cues you think are important I add for this?



    Thanks

  2. #2

    Re: Need some advice from the pros around here........

    Hey Kid!
    Hardly a pro , but here are my two cents. Everyone I\'ve ever met in the film industry leans towards having the attention span of a gnat. Particular the folks who are deluged with demos such as these. 20 minutes seems MUCH too long IMO. I have starting build my demo (with a few tips from this forums working gents) with an eye towards shorter , genre specific segments. 2 1/2 to 3 minutes chunks. That way if they get bored with one, pshycologically they may feel the need to zip over to the next one which may grab their attention more. If what tickled their fancy shows up more than 2 minutes into a long reel like you suggest they may never get up to that point and be left, sadly, un-tickled. I also plan to have one encompassed general reel , but that will still only be at the 5 min mark tops.

    cb

  3. #3

    Re: Need some advice from the pros around here........

    20mins is ok provided that every track is absolute dynamite. Start the CD with the best cue and make it a BIG one. Producers often listen to stuff while driving home or to a meeting, so subtle, quieter stuff may not register on a car stereo in traffic. It doesn\'t have to be violent, action music, but it should be bold and impressive with a theme you can really sink your teeth into. Maybe the penultimate track could be a quiet one, but finish with another big bang.

    If possible, put something with a female vocal on it - not a pop song as such, but just something to indicate that you can do that kind of thing in a dramatic context. Every, but EVERY media composer gets asked to do a vocal piece eventually.

    20 mins is the maximum really - there\'s an old showbiz addage: \"always leave them wanting more\".

    And on that note.....

    Luck
    Heath

  4. #4

    Re: Need some advice from the pros around here........

    I would say 8 to 10 tracks is a good start. Try to make it as varied as possible within that genre. The problem with alot of the ambient type filmscore stuff is that while it works great in a film, it doesn\'t necessarily translate to a good listening experience on it\'s own - it can sometimes be boring. So, I would try to put some stuff with any type of melody if possible - it gives people something to latch onto when there\'s not the visual attached. Also, cues with wierd instrumentation are probably good as well - any type of hook is a good thing. I sometimes make up names for the tracks that sort of tell the listener what kind of scene it might be for to put them in the right frame of mind, i.e. \"Tom Finds The Body\" as opposed to \"1m14 or Suspense Cue\".

    Hope that helps -

    Jeff

  5. #5

    Re: Need some advice from the pros around here........

    Or you can always build a demo track of 20 sec takes like this one : Eonsounds demoreel

    It\'s 7 min but I think it can do the work!
    Hope that help!

  6. #6

    Re: Need some advice from the pros around here........

    From my personal experience of talking to quite a few directors I would say that:

    a. Most of these guys are so busy that unless you got them on the first track, they pass.

    b. Most of these guys generally can\'t recognize real music talent if it hit them on the head with a two ton heavy thing. They only know what the like and what they dislike.

    c. Your reel, no matter how good it is will never be better than a friend of the director\'s recommendation or a relative. Can you get someone to put in a good word for you?

    I guess, don\'t really stress out about it. Put your best foot forward and the rest is pretty much luck. I would advise that you keep your reel at 8 minutes or less. Less is generally more, leave them a bit hungry. And I would also advise that you do some research in the director\'s work prior to now, and see if you can get a hold of previous movies. Then you\'ll know what he likes (pretty clever eh?) and hence you\'ll be able to customize the CD for him/her.

    As far as Sharmy\'s friend, I wonder if he\'s getting the calls based on his reel or his Emmys?

  7. #7
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    Re: Need some advice from the pros around here....

    Thanks for the feedback guys!


    Yeah Sharmy, no \"industry standard\" just getting a sense of what others would do. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]

    BTW, I should have said \"trying to keep it UNDER 20 minutes\" not \"around 20 minutes\". I personally don\'t believe in montage demos. I\'ve never really seen the need.


    I should have also made it clear that these people receiving my stuff are people my wife works with, so my assumption is that they will give it a little more priority than if it was \"off the street\". Not that they\'ll listen to it uninterrupted all the way through, but I think they\'ll let it play out a bit more, benefit of the doubt type of thing. So no, these aren\'t cold submissions, or vague acquaintances... I think that\'s something to consider in this situation.


    (just giving you the back story)


    Dudley- That is my feeling as well, no filler, or tracks that are questionable. It\'s funny you mention something with a female vocal. I just did a trailer cue with female vocal for a small flick (that I\'m gonna score in a bit). It was a \"few hours\" type of thing, sparse was what was wanted. Maybe I should add it? Wonder if you guys think it\'s too sparse, maybe I should work it up a bit more? Here\'s the cue--> SHUTTER



    Jeff- Yeah I agree on the ambient thing. I would say most of my stuff has a melody to follow (although it\'s on the darker side). But I was gonna write something new that\'s pretty dark and ambient, with minimal melody. My thinking was keep it short, maybe 45 seconds. I think I need to have something really dark and abstract with no real melody considering a lot of the films these people do are kinda quirky and weird... which is probably my style to begin with. But yeah, I agree with you on the \"M-1\" thing. I thinks it\'s probably best to try and set a visual as well, hold them by the hand so to speak....


    Sharmy- That\'s an interesting idea about the double CD thing. Although, I\'m pretty much a one trick pony. Shhhh, don\'t blow my cover! [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]


    [ QUOTE ]
    BY midphase--- b. Most of these guys generally can\'t recognize real music talent if it hit them on the head with a two ton heavy thing. They only know what they like and what they dislike.

    [/ QUOTE ]


    Actually, that\'s ok with me so long as they like my stuff. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] I don\'t think \"talent\" is necessarily important, so long as you deliver the \"vibe\" needed (depending on the film). There are many \"talented\" composers that don\'t work because their music doesn\'t \"fit\". My opinion..


    [ QUOTE ]
    c. Your reel, no matter how good it is will never be better than a friend of the director\'s recommendation or a relative. Can you get someone to put in a good word for you?

    [/ QUOTE ]


    Very true... Yes my wife is basically putting in the good word for me. She shares some clients with these managers and works with some of these producers (she\'s a film agent at one of the most prominent agencies in LA). So that\'s my \"in\".


    But yeah I agree with doing research! Definitely! I know these people\'s work (which is darker, gritty, ambient, type stuff...) I think it\'s right up my alley.


    I may split the difference and go 15 minutes. Well, depending on if I think the 20 minutes is really strong...



    Thanks for the input guys... much appreciated!!!

  8. #8

    Re: Need some advice from the pros around here....

    Can you give me your wife\'s phone number? [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/crazy.gif[/img]

  9. #9
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    Re: Need some advice from the pros around here....

    310-288-45## [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]

  10. #10

    Re: Need some advice from the pros around here....

    [ QUOTE ]
    310-288-45## [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]

    [/ QUOTE ]

    anybody with little dedication has only 99 different combinations to try [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]

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