Film and TV
Hollywood’s favorite pop star right now is the late folk music legend John Denver (Quartz)
Forget Ed Sheeran and Taylor Swift. The biggest pop star of 2017 is John Denver, the country folk singer-songwriter who died 20 years ago. Denver’s iconic music has already been featured in five different major Hollywood films this year: Free Fire; Alien: Covenant; Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul; Okja; Logan Lucky. A sixth, Kingsman: The Golden Circle, hits theaters on Sept. 22.
The Music in Ken Burns’ The Vietnam War Is Remarkable. Here’s How It Was Chosen (Esquire)
Bookended by the two musical giants of the decade, The Vietnam War uses the songs of the period to tremendous effect, redefining that music—much of which has already appeared in films about the era from Apocalypse Now to Good Morning, Vietnam and Forrest Gump—and making it feel fresh again.
Insecure Music Supervisor Kier Lehman Reflects on Season 2 Soundtrack’s Success (Billboard)
For Kier Lehman, being the musical mediator between SZA and Issa Rae is all in a day’s work. Lehman is the man behind the music for HBO’s breakout series Insecure, created by and starring Issa Rae.
Synchtank launches monthly ‘Top TV Tunes’ Spotify playlist (Spotify)
At Synchtank we have created a curated list of the best tunes on US TV each month, starting with the highlights from September 2017.
Listen to Radiohead and Hans Zimmer Collaboration “(ocean) bloom” for Blue Planet II (Under The Radar)
Radiohead have teamed up with film composer Hans Zimmer for a new version of “Bloom,” from the band’s 2011 album The King of Limbs. The new version is entitled “(ocean) bloom” and was put together for BBC’s upcoming nature documentary series Planet Earth: Blue Planet II.
The Kingsman 2 Soundtrack Is The Perfect Complement To The Superspy Action (Bustle)
Kingsman: The Secret Service features a number of songs in addition to the score, and while there is some modern flare from hip hop artists like Iggy Azalea and Dizzee Rascal, there’s a clear preference for the classics from bands such as Dire Straits, KC & The Sunshine Band, Lynyrd Skynyrd, and Bryan Ferry.
How Jim Jarmusch used music to put a spell on Hollywood (Guardian)
With unassuming casualness, Jarmusch’s soundtracks and cast lists have created a cumulative portrait of the US musical underclass, much of it African American, that reflects his films’ interest in the marginal or overlooked – the drifters, dreamers and beatniks who give that troubled nation its artistic character.
Music Supervisor Jen Pyken on the Music of This Is Us (tunefind)
Late last year the show came out of nowhere and nearly made it into Tunefind’s top ten shows of 2016 only a few episodes into the series, thanks to the intense emotional connection for viewers and the spot-on mix of music.
Chrysta Bell on David Lynch’s Process and the Music of Twin Peaks: “The soundtrack of my lifetime” (Paste)
Chrysta Bell’s speaking voice is uncannily like a harpsichord made of solid, hammer-warmed honey. There is ample melody in it, even when she’s not making music. Originally from San Antonio, Chrysta Bell (C.B.) is a singer-songwriter whose field of play is usually referred to as “dream pop,” but like a lot of genre-welding, that term’s not quite right.
5 Movie Soundtracks That Rescued Great Musicians From Obscurity (Pitchfork)
Music supervisors routinely choose just the right pop songs to make key scenes swell with emotion and energy. One thing that remains a rare pleasure, though, is a film that draws our attention to a great established artist we’ve never heard before. Here are five such flicks and the musicians they reintroduced.
How Stranger Things, Insecure, Master of None, and more got their most iconic musical moments (Fader)
As the era of Peak TV continues grows larger each year, making a show stand out with excellent musical choices has become a vital way to break through. Our favourite shows use their soundtracks as an additional character, setting the scene and weaving a subtle narrative thread through what we see on screen
Teen Wolf: The End of an Era (tunefind)
Music supervisor Laura Webb was the woman behind the almost 600 songs featured in the series, and has been a longtime friend of Tunefind. We spoke with her recently and she shared her favorite music moments from the show. Today – as we say goodbye to Teen Wolf – it seems fitting that we look back at the very beginning of the show
Exclusive: Transparent Creator Jill Soloway Reveals Pfefferman Playlist for Season 4 (Paste)
Transparent creator Jill Soloway has created the “Pfefferman Pfamily Pflaylist,” an exclusive Amazon Music playlist, and Paste has it first. Working with the show’s music supervisor, Bruce Gilbert, Soloway chose songs that she considers meaningful to the Pfefferman family journey heading into Season 4.
Meet Jason DeMarco, The Reason Adult Swim’s Music Is So Good (Pitchfork)
Behind the scenes of Adult Swim’s musical approach is Senior Vice President and Creative Director of On-Air Jason DeMarco. Responsible for producing everything on Adult Swim that isn’t a show or third-party ad, DeMarco distributes cash to (mostly) independent artists and labels in service of soundtracking and promoting Adult Swim’s content. In the process, he has quietly become one of the music industry’s most influential tastemakers.
‘He was a good friend, and he was very funny’: Hollywood director James Cameron on working with Titanic, Avatar and Aliens composer James Horner (Royal Albert Hall)
James Cameron and James Horner met in 1980, while working on sci-fi movie Battle Beyond the Stars. James Horner would go on to set the emotional tone for hundreds of films, but his legacy will be inexorably tied to Cameron, who he worked closely with for more than 30 years.
Blonde Redhead Charts Following Rick and Morty Sync (Billboard)
“For the Damaged Coda,” originally released in 2000, reaches the Hot Rock Songs chart after its inclusion in a recent episode of the Adult Swim series.
Composition, collaboration and community at Soundtrack Cologne (UK & European Guild of Music Supervisors)
Soundtrack Cologne is a yearly event which recognises and commends sound and music for visual media. Across a number of days various industry professionals host talks addressing relevant industry topics, with each day of conference focusing on one field of the media – whether that be video games, film, TV etc. We spoke with two composers – Walter Mair and Volker Bertelmann – who were both in attendance at this years conference.
Sync Story: Life Is Strange: Before The Storm/Daughter (Music Week)
Daughter have been celebrated for their uncompromising way with emotion since forming in 2010, and now, thanks to their first video game OST, they’re winning over a new legion of fans. Signed to 4AD and preparing to support The National on the road in America next month, the trio recently released the score for Square Enix’s new game, Life Is Strange: Before The Storm, the prequel to its BAFTA-winning 2015 first edition.
Hyperdub Announce Rare Japanese Video Game Music Compilation (Pitchfork)
Kode9’s Hyperdub label has announced a new compilation of “pioneering” compositions found on relatively unknown Japanese video games from the 1980s and ’90s. Diggin’ in the Carts is out November 17 on digital and CD, with a vinyl release forthcoming; it follows a Red Bull Music Academy documentary series of the same name.
Middle-earth: Shadow of War Composer Talks Difference Between Working on Games and Film (DualShockers)
Veteran games composer Garry Schyman talks about his recent work on Shadow of War along with discussing his history with the Middle-earth property.
Exclusive Interview: Composer Jason Graves talks video game soundtracks (Flickering Myth)
Sean Wilson catches up with with Jason to discuss his work on the rebooted Tomb Raider series and other hit video game franchises, discussing his musical process and what it means to honour the musical legacy of console gaming.
FIFA 18 soundtrack released with heavy hitters like Odesza, Alt-J, Slowdive, Lorde & RAC (Magnetic Magazine)
Video game soundtracks are some of the most coveted syncs and artist can get because of the replay value they have for a song. FIFA is known for having one of the best-curated soundtracks out there, spanning electronic, rock, hip-hop and everything in between. FIFA ’18 is no different, bringing some heavy-hitters onto the soundtrack like Odesza, Alt-J, Slowdive, Lorde, RAC and Mura Masa.
Aura 3D makes video game debut on psychological shocker Get Even (Inside CI)
Immersive sound technology Auro 3D has made its video game debut. Creepy thriller title Get Even has broken new ground by offering an Auro 3D immersive soundtrack. Musicians recorded the score, which features the Brussels Philharmonic orchestra along with various electronic instruments, using ambisonic techniques. It was mixed in Auro 3D at Galaxy Studios, home of Auro Technologies.
Universal, Mass Appeal, Spotify Execs Talk Branding In a Hip-Hop World at NYC’s Advertising Week (Billboard)
Earlier this summer, Nielsen reported that hip-hop/R&B is the most-consumed and dominant genre of music for the first time since the company began tracking the U.S. music industry, surpassing rock with 25.1 percent of total consumption. From artists-turned-moguls like Diddy and Jay-Z to ascendants like Lil Yachty and Migos brokering deals with established companies like Nautica and Reebok, respectively, hip-hop is big business — and record labels are often involved in putting those deals together.
Billboard & Clio Music’s Top Commercials of the Year, Powered by Shazam (Billboard)
Marian Hill, Alex da Kid and The White Stripes – and corresponding brands Apple, IBM and Beats Audio – received the No. 1 distinction on the charts, which were published in conjunction with the 2017 Clio Awards held Sept. 27 in New York City.
How North Face And Maggie Rogers Became A Harmonious Pair (Clio)
Ever since the Grateful Dead played in front of the brand’s first store in 1966, North Face has embraced music as a key part of its creative DNA. They went on to host music festivals throughout the 1990s and, more recently, had My Morning Jacket record a rendition of the Woody Guthrie classic “This Land Is Your Land” for a 2014 campaign.
Sync Story: Labrinth/Apple (Music Week)
Labrinth could be one step closer to household name status in America, after he was revealed as the artist behind the soundtrack to Apple’s new ad for its Series 3 Apple Watch. The usual clamour to discover who was behind the song resulted in a dead end, with Shazam unable to recognise the music. But no more: after launching on what is surely one of the biggest platforms possible, Misbehaving is now available everywhere.
Imagine Dragons’ ‘Thunder’ Storms to No. 1 on Top TV Commercials Chart for August (Billboard)
Imagine Dragons’ “Thunder” rules Billboard & Clio’s Top TV Commercials chart, powered by Shazam, for August, thanks to the song’s appearance in Microsoft Surface Laptop’s “Powerfully Beautiful” ad. “Thunder” is the second Imagine Dragons song to lead the Top TV Commercials chart in 2017, as prior single “Believer” topped the March ranking after its appearance in Nintendo’s “Switch” commercial.
Why you’ll recognise the tunes in Citi’s new campaign (AdAge)
Citibank, which earlier this year commissioned a study that looked at music’s role in advertising, is using earworms like “Singin’ in the Rain,” “Double Lovin'” and “Here Comes Your Man” in its new campaign, “Welcome What’s Next.” The messaging, which highlights products like the Double Cash credit card as well as the Citi brand itself, debuted in Asia earlier this summer and hits U.S. broadcast on Tuesday.
UK Top Shazamed Ads: September 19 | September 26 (The Drum)
The Drum’s Shazam chart is based on the number of times each ad has been Shazamed over the past week using the music identification app. Here are the charts from the last couple of weeks.
The most Shazamed ads of the week (US): September 11 – 17 | September 18 – 24 (Clio)
Every week, Clios.com, in partnership with Shazam, rounds up the most Shazamed ads of the previous week. These are the top spots from September 11th to September 24th.
Business and Legal
Synchtank in Music Ally’s Sandbox Magazine – 13/09/17 (Synchblog)
We are delighted to be featured in the latest issue of Sandbox, Music Ally‘s digital music marketing magazine! Hear more about how Synchtank has developed over the years, and what’s next for us in this chat with our founder Joel Jordan, CEO Rory Bernard, and CBO Chris Cass.
Assets of sync platform Ricall up for sale following liquidation (cmu)
The assets of sync platform Ricall are up for sale after the music licensing company recently fell into liquidation following nearly two decades in business. Ricall was best known for offering an online search facility for film, telly and advertising types who were looking to license music for their projects.
Production Music Is a Billion-Dollar Business (Variety)
Production music is a $1 billion global industry “hidden in plain sight” that is ready for its close-up, according to Joe Saba, who promises to deliver just that with the fourth annual Production Music Conference, Oct. 4-6 at the Loews Hollywood Hotel.
Curb Your Enthusiasm Re-Ups With Production Music House Killer Tracks (Variety)
Killer Tracks, the production music library that is the source for “Frolic,” the quirky theme to the HBO comedy series Curb Your Enthusiasm, will continue its relationship with Larry David, through its music licensing executive James Frangipane. The piece was written by Italian composer Luciano Michelini.
Spirit Music Group hires Gary Miller from Universal Music Publishing Group (Music Week)
Spirit Music Group has hired Universal Music Publishing Group’s Gary Miller to the position of SVP, creative services. Miller will be based in the company’s Los Angeles office and will be responsible for leading the company’s sync efforts to create opportunities for Spirit’s writers by placing songs in upcoming film, television and advertising opportunities.
BDi Music signs Dr Foster TV composer (Music Week)
BDi Music has signed a global publishing deal with composer Stuart Earl, who wrote the music for current BBC ratings winner Dr Foster. The London-based composer is also working on this year’s Agatha Christie mini-series, Ordeal By Innocence. Earl secured an Ivor Novello nomination for Best Television Soundtrack for Mammoth Screen’s adaptation of Christie’s And Then There Were None, screened on BBC One over Christmas 2015.
Production Music Conference 2017 (Los Angeles, October 4th – 6th)
The Production Music Association is celebrating 20 years this year with the 4th Annual Production Music Conference on October 4-6, 2017! This year they’ll be “building on the past and defining the future” as they navigate through industry changes, advancements, and predictions, while maintaining core values and setting imperative standards.
A2IM LA SynchUp 2017 (Los Angeles, November 2nd 2017)
L.A. SynchUp is A2IM’s premiere synch and licensing event. Taking place in the landscaped backyard of a private residence, the Hopeless House, this invite-only event hosts a day of both formal and informal networking and community.
Key Worldwide Music Industry & Sync Events List 2017 – Updated (Synchblog)
We’ve updated this gargantuan list for you yet again! You won’t find a more comprehensive list of music industry events out there, bookmark it now.
Don’t forget to subscribe to our Synchtank Weekly newsletter to receive all of our blog posts via email, plus key industry news, and details of our podcast episodes and free webinars.