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Digital Subscriptions > MusicTech > Jul-18 > 1O TIPS from the pros on composing for TV

1O TIPS from the pros on composing for TV

Ever wanted to compose music for a TV show? We’ve rounded up some of the biggest names in the business to sound them out for their words of wisdom. We have composers who have themed everything from Bones and Homeland to Fargo and Altered Carbon. Read on for some sage soundtrack advice…

1 Create your own sound

Nathan Barr has scored HBO’s Emmy-winning True Blood, The Americans and Netflix’s Hemlock Grove. He advocates finding your own sound… “Take the time you need to find your own voice as a composer. Samples are great, but they can be as limiting as they are useful. It’s easy to rely on sample libraries, but they can divert you from finding a unique sound. Rather than thinking in terms of what plug-ins other composers are using, try experimenting with the resources you have on hand. Personally, I do this by recording a lot of live instruments myself, and the less familiar I am with the instrument, the better. This approach leads to interesting textures, experimentation and happy melodic and harmonic accidents that I wouldn’t have been able to arrive to with samples.”

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About MusicTech

He’s the man who revolutionised modern film scores with a creative approach to music-making, sonic experimentation and sound utilisation that helps some of the biggest directors to tell their stories. This month we’re overwhelmingly honoured to speak to one of the greatest composers on the planet: Hans Zimmer. In our ten-page interview we talk to Hans about his recent work with Spitfire Audio – co-creating a remarkable assortment of production and studio tools – as well as his incredible career in soundtracking. Elsewhere this issue, Dave Gale takes us through the legacy of the vocoder, we report on this year’s Superbooth show in Berlin and speak to its progenitor Andreas Schneider about his views on modular synthesis and its integral place in the music technology world. We’ve also got our usual tutorials, tips and reviews. Enjoy the issue!