Archive for the ‘Music Industry News’ Category

Last December we had the opportunity to work with filmmaker Phillip Barker on short film called Malody. The work is one of Baker’s finest and was an official selection to the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival.

Set inside a roadside diner, a sick woman meets herself as a little girl in the reflection of a mirror. The diner is built within a large wooden wheel and is literally rolled through a studio. As the world turns upside down, the changing gravitational pull creates chaos and sets off a fateful chain of events.

TreBrand provided sound design services for this film. Creating the sound FXs was challenging in that there were a lot of organic sound but also many sounds that needed a bit of a combined texture to get the right sound. Below is the trailer for the film.

For most industries there is always a list of the best or the best. In business we tend to look at the stock markets and in sports there is always a ranking for you to check.

In most cases it’s easy to see who is the best. In music and art it’s a little tougher since we don’t have a point system or a finite way of saying this composition is better, although more recently we have the Billboard charts.

So, how do we know who is the best of the best in music? Well, surprisingly there is a whole field of research that has gone into this.

Over the last few weeks I’ve been reading Social and Applied Psychology of Music and in the book is a discussion of who is the best composer of all time. The book goes on to describe that the list was created by examining how many times a composer was mentioned in articles, had his or her music performed, the amount of pages they fill in encyclopedias and rankings provided by musicologists.

Below is a list of the ten best composers and a representative work. Let us know your picks in the comments section. Are they different from these selections? Who would you add? Who might you subtract?

1. J.S. Bach

2. L.V. Beethoven

3. W.A. Mozart

4. J. Haydn

5. J. Brahms

6. G.F. Handel

7. C. Debussy

8. F. Schubert

9. J. Wagner

10. F. Chopin

This weekend we had the chance to visit our friends from Ryerson University who have developed the Emoti-Chair.

What is the Emoti-Chair?

Well, it’s part back massager and part communication tool. It was originally designed to help deaf and hard of hearing persons to feel and thus hear films. You can find out more about the Emoti-Chair by visiting the Center for Learning Technologies site.

I encourage you to get involved in any type of research that matters to you. Get out there folks and do something awesome.

A Note from the Chief Noisemaker: Every once in a while I try to bring in a guest writer to the Sound Bytes blog. This is my first forray into what I hope to become a regular piece. If you’d like to contribute to the blog please contact us we’d love to hear from you.

Advertising though music is not a new concept, it has always been there, in the form of jingles and background music. What is new or gaining acceptance and popularity is the use of corporate advertising to further a bands musical career.

If you are old enough to remember the 80′ you will not have many recollections of major artists endorsing any products. My first encounter was seeing Michael Jackson in a Pepsi commercial and it was a big deal. Granted, he was already an established artist and received a ridiculous amount of money, it was generally considered to be selling out to the corporations. Over time the “selling out” point of view diminished and the benefits to bands began to be seen.

In September 2000 I enrolled at a recording school in Vancouver Canada. During that year I observed a recording session at the school by a former graduate named Jeff Dawson where he was recording our computer tech/drummer for a project of his. About 5 years later I was listening to the radio and the DJ announces the song as the new hit song from a Coca-Cola commercial. I had never seen this commercial or heard the song but it was somehow very familiar. The song was Bad Day by Daniel Powter, produced by Jeff Dawson. I later found out that the ad was aired in France where the song had gained popularity. It was one of the biggest songs that year and the experience was closely followed by all of us at the school. We later had Jeff in to give a talk to our students about the whole experience but the main thing to remember is that up until the use of the song in the ad, they were all just regular guys and musicians working every angle that they could to get their music out there.

What did the ad do for them?

The people involved were all talented musicians and the songs were good but having talent and a good song unfortunately isn’t enough, you need exposure. In Jeff Dawson’s case the song was complete and floating around for years. It took the exposure that Coca-Cola gave it to reach the masses and when it did it exploded!

Now it seems to be common place to have an initial exposure to a band or an artist through advertising, just look at Apple and their iTunes commercials. Not to say that you need to have a major corporation behind you in order to reach stardom but you do need exposure and teaming your art together with a product isn’t a bad avenue to pursue and at the very least, you’ll get paid for your music.

For more information on audio engineering services please visit

The last few weeks have been jam packed with news in the audio branding industry. I thought I’d take a minute to put them all in one place for you. So, here goes.

“The Great Happyfication” – Coca-Cola Uses Branded Media to Get You to Sing Its Tune

Released just a few days ago Coca-Cola is expanding it’s reach into the entertainment creation business. A six and a half minute video has been commissioned to celebrate the 125th birthday of the brand. The most interesting part of the video is the use of sound. Coca-Cola in this video has created a musical based on its signature audio logo. Here’s a link to “The Great Happyfication” video.

Audio Branding Academy Announces Speakers for 2011 Audio Branding Congress

On November 17th the Audio Branding Academy will host it’s annual congress in New York City. Just announced this week is the speakers for the congress. The names on the list are truly all-stars in the audio branding world. Here is a link to the congress page where you can find more information about the exciting presentations.

Nokia Launches A Contest To Find Its New Tune

Recognized by millions the Nokia tune is due for a face lift. Announced in early September Nokia will be providing a $10,000 prize to the winner of a global contest to find the next Nokia audio signature. The judges of the contest will be fans and a panel of experts. The contest is sure to raise awareness for the brand and is sure to help out one musician in a major way.

I recently happened about this question on LinkedIn answers. It’s a great question for marketers and marketing professionals. The question should also be relevant to film composers as well.

Many times as a film composer I am asked to work on a project for very little money or no money. Film composers do it for the love, but we still need to pay bills like everyone else. However, I always wonder are the directors and producers putting the horse before the carriage? It seems odd that film composers are the ones subjected to budget restraints.

Most producers today have put strategy before budget. In a sense this is smart but what good is a plan that you can’t execute?

If we do things the other way around we will stifle creativity and imagination due to lack of funds.

I’d like to see filmmakers create a strategy, figure out the budget and then execute the hell out of it. That means raising the funds to pay for all members of a production crew. If you can’t afford the strategy then work your budget and figure out a strategy from there and stick to it.

Over the past weekend the Oscars took place and as usual the speeches were nothing to be desired. However, some surprising results in terms of the winners had happened. Most important for me as a musician was the award given to Trent Reznor for the score of The Social Network.

Musical impressions aside, what I want to know from you my readers, do you think the traditional orchestra movie score has lost its impact?

Please leave your thoughts in the comments below.


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