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Saturday, 14 April 2012

Musical Musings

Recently, I've been noticing that listening to music has been influencing my workflow.  When I'm editing, I'll always choose music that seems to fit the shoot somehow.  For weddings, I'll sometimes choose albums that have the track a bride walked in to, or when the happy couple walk back down the aisle together.  The music I've been listening to whilst editing then makes it to the viewings I have with clients.  I find it incredibly emotive - beautiful moments being played out to a soundtrack. 

Music has always been a big part of my life.  I love the emotions it can evoke and the memories it can jolt.  At family parties, when I was growing up, the table would be cleared, washing up would be done and the music would start.  Whether it was all of us round the piano, or being thrust under the tree at Christmas to sing Away In A Manger, a get together was never complete without a bit of music at the end.

The 80's came and went in a flurry of fashion blunders.  I never really got the Duran vs Spandau thing.  I was listening to Kate Bush and Blondie and electronic stuff.  Then, off to college, and along came lots of gigs.  I loved seeing live music.  Something inside me clicked, and I decided I wanted to sing in a band.  I was in a couple in Liverpool & London with varying success stories.  We didn't reach super-stardom, but I loved it.

 For the last couple of shoots I've done, I found myself listening to music whilst I was in the planning stage.  I was choosing music in my office and for my iPod when I was out and about.  Both shoots had an ethereal dreamlike quality to them in my head.  Ideas for images started racing, listening to Euan Atkinson (more of this young chap in a bit), and Jo Hamilton.  I stumbled on her beautiful music by chance.  She was brought up in the Scottish highlands and just seems to magically connect with this landscape.  The description of her music on her website "Björk and Sarah McLachlan singing Robbie Burns, backed by Sigur Rós” - works for me.

To Euan - so musically accomplished for his years.  He writes big, powerful, yet tender and emotive pieces of music, each one an individual soundtrack.    Think Michael Nyman, Thomas Newman (American Beauty, Revolutionary Road) or Rob Dougan's contribution to The Matrix.  His tunes are so thoughtful and atmospheric (just take a listen to Neon Scope), they really struck a chord with me.  So much so, I've commissioned him to write a tune to accompany a promo piece for my launch.  I had a little listen to it in progress the other day and to say I'm chuffed is an understatement!  If you've been thinking about music for your website or a promo video, he is your chap.  After hearing my track progressing, I then had the pleasure of taking some promo shots for him. 

 I do believe we'll be seeing his name on many a film credit in the future.

And so to my own musical adventures.  The guitar stares at me, willing me to give it another try, as do the borrowed ukuleles.  But I think I'm quite happy to keep listening to those far more accomplished than me!


  1. another lovely post. Made me teary when I saw my boy. Can't wait until your tune is finished and out in the world for all to enjoy xxx

  2. brilliantly written and insightful in the ways of music, it's an honour to be compared to Thomas Newman and other such artists, the american beauty soundtrack is one of my favourites, Cheers Sarah :)