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Topic: Industry Analysis

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  1. #1

    Industry Analysis

    I recenty asked about who was working composers on here in the East West site and got a great response. My next query is; Can anyone give me a quick analysis or snapshot of the music for tv and video games? For example, What is the competition like? What do you do to get clients? What are the typical pay rates? Also what type of musical background do most of you have? Did you go to college for music or sound design?


    Thanks

  2. #2

    Re: Industry Analysis

    BigBeats, think long and hard about what Lee just said, this is not a pleasant business anymore.

    I confess that if I could go back in time, I would be tempted to choose a different path in life. I am saying this in the same breath as I say that I love music and am passionate about composing, and this is coming from someone who is making a living at it!

    Other friends of mine who have jobs with benefits, a decent amount of security, and who work 40 hours or less a week, get paid vacations, and also seem to have fun, I look at them sometime with a sense of envy and longing for a relatively simple lifestyle. They are able to go home in the evenings and write music for fun....imagine that!

    Sorry if this sounds a bit dark, but it is important to really and truly understand that this biz is not this romantic and glamorous thing that many young composers envision being.
    >>Kays
    http://www.musicbykays.com
    Music Composition for Feature Films, Television and Interactive Entertainment

  3. #3

    Re: Industry Analysis

    I believe there is a flipside to this too. As our music making capabilities have gotten cheaper and better so have the film making tools. These days you can make a great film or game for very little and that means more up and coming film and game makers. In the end being successful we be about who you know as to what you know.
    Chris

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    Re: Industry Analysis

    If I may wax philosophical for a moment I would like to remind ourselves that Desktop publishing reached a price performance level, at one point, where 'everyone' thought they'd make a few bob (dollars us) turning out newsletters and tickets etc.

    As has been said in the previous posts....the trouble is that everyone else has the gear as well. The truth is, and globalisation of the entertainment industry is making it much worse, that there is so much talent and accessible equipment out there, whether it be music, film, art or graphics that there just isn't, just can't, and never will be room for everyone.

    The safest thing to do is to treat it as a hobby, entertainment and relaxation. There is one worthwhile outcome of the product of all this equipment and that is that it enables you to annoy and bore your friends and family ad nauseum. The benefit of this is that they'll rarely tell you what they really think.....which is much more palatable than real world opinions.....

    Frank

  5. #5
    Senior Member Bruce A. Richardson's Avatar
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    Re: Industry Analysis

    I don't know. I agree with everything that has been said. But as I have said often before, I think we're just entering a more even playing field and it's as simple as that. Other businesses operate on similarly even fields, with similar competition. One just has to design some business model that works, and keep plugging away.

    I think it takes ten years in any business to pay your dues. It takes another five or so years to start up a company and get it running and floating, minimum. It's easy to look back and see how I connected the dots and ended up being OK, but I certainly couldn't see the progress most of the time when it was actually happening.

    The answers to all the specific questions are very easy and general. Everything is about who you know. You have to put yourself into a circle of working artists. Most people I know started these relationships in college. It starts with one "go to" relationship, and others materialize from it if you're good at what you do and pleasant to be around while doing it.

    I am very positive about our business, and about the opportunities. But increased competition DOES mean increased pressure to distinguish yourself. It helps to be educated, immensely, and to be a good improviser. It's no coincidence that lots of working commercial composers have a background in jazz. It makes things a whole lot faster.

  6. #6
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    Re: Industry Analysis

    It sure seems tough. More than once I've been discouraged from trying to "go pro" from what seem to be really grim market conditions. I've been a musician for 25 years and a computer user for 15, so I've had plenty of time to learn. Still, I'm nobody here, but at the same time boy has it been interesting over the years to study the folks on this board. I may only appear to have a few posts but I've been lurking for quite awhile.... I suppose only now ready to reveal my true name and suffer the slings and arrows of my superiors in the field.

    So to the original poster, do some informed searching here and you'll find all the information you would need about the state of the industry. Much of it from the people who have already posted to this thread.

    OT: Hardy, what exactly is the difference between quid, bob, and pounds? Are they all slang for the same thing? Or were there different slang terms before and after England joined the common european market back in the 70s (or was it 60s)?

    Anyway, for me it is a hobby in that I don't get paid but at the same time it's as vital to my sense of self as the pride of holding a steady job with benefits. And just as well, since the system of business seems to suck the soul out of anything it touches, and in a global context it's an order of magnitude beyond.
    Some experts learn more and more about less and less, until at last they know everything there is about nothing at all.

  7. #7
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    Talking Re: Industry Analysis

    Quote Originally Posted by Alewis
    Still, I'm nobody here, but at the same time boy has it been interesting over the years to study the folks on this board. I may only appear to have a few posts but I've been lurking for quite awhile....

    OT: Hardy, what exactly is the difference between quid, bob, and pounds? Are they all slang for the same thing? Or were there different slang terms before and after England joined the common european market back in the 70s (or was it 60s)?
    You never know. One day you may just write 'that' piece of music.

    A quid - One pound
    A bob - One shilling - now 5 pence
    A pound - A quid
    A Pony - 25 quid
    A Monkey - 500 quid

  8. #8

    Re: Industry Analysis

    Quote Originally Posted by midphase
    BigBeats, think long and hard about what Lee just said, this is not a pleasant business anymore.

    I confess that if I could go back in time, I would be tempted to choose a different path in life. I am saying this in the same breath as I say that I love music and am passionate about composing, and this is coming from someone who is making a living at it!

    Other friends of mine who have jobs with benefits, a decent amount of security, and who work 40 hours or less a week, get paid vacations, and also seem to have fun, I look at them sometime with a sense of envy and longing for a relatively simple lifestyle. They are able to go home in the evenings and write music for fun....imagine that!

    Sorry if this sounds a bit dark, but it is important to really and truly understand that this biz is not this romantic and glamorous thing that many young composers envision being.
    Midphase, you always have incredible insights to offer... this time you stroke me deep inside, I make your words mine too!!!

  9. #9

    Re: Industry Analysis

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce A. Richardson
    It's easy to look back and see how I connected the dots and ended up being OK, but I certainly couldn't see the progress most of the time when it was actually happening.
    Right on...
    Houston Haynes - Titan Line Music

  10. #10

    Re: Industry Analysis

    Quote Originally Posted by Hardy Heern
    If I may wax philosophical for a moment I would like to remind ourselves that Desktop publishing reached a price performance level, at one point, where 'everyone' thought they'd make a few bob (dollars us) turning out newsletters and tickets etc.

    As has been said in the previous posts....the trouble is that everyone else has the gear as well. The truth is, and globalisation of the entertainment industry is making it much worse, that there is so much talent and accessible equipment out there, whether it be music, film, art or graphics that there just isn't, just can't, and never will be room for everyone.

    The safest thing to do is to treat it as a hobby, entertainment and relaxation. There is one worthwhile outcome of the product of all this equipment and that is that it enables you to annoy and bore your friends and family ad nauseum. The benefit of this is that they'll rarely tell you what they really think.....which is much more palatable than real world opinions.....

    Frank

    yes, true. one wonders how many of the several hundred new owners of the EWQLSO Gold are working composers. i'm willing to bet 98% of them are hobbyists such as myself, though I used to be a semi-pro who fell victim to the music tech explosion in the ninties...

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