I was happy to shoot brief red-carpet interviews with several of this year’s ASCAP award winners, including Wendy Melvoin and Lisa Coleman, Bear McCreary and others. This collection of video clips includes one of my favorite moments, a wonderful chamber-music performance of Garry Schyman’s Bioshock Infinite theme.
Interviewing the always animated Bear McCreary.
In addition, I worked with director Dan DiSouza of Talking Pictures Media to create three of the evening’s key video tributes: one profiling the great Shirley Walker, another on Wendy and Lisa, and a third celebrating 100 years of ASCAP film music. Here‘s my rundown of the key awards and the evening in general.
This week, I reported on two issues involving the American Federation of Musicians, which is the union representing all professional musicians (including those who record film, TV and game music, a subject I’ve studied and reported on for more than two decades).
The AFM has threatened a leading game composer, Austin Wintory (Journey) with a $50,000 and potential expulsion for recording a game score under non-union auspices. Wintory went public with his situation on Monday. Wintory found that game publishers would not use the existing AFM game-music contract and felt he had no choice.
Two days later, the AFM announced a new game contract, hammered out after months of negotiations with Microsoft Corporation. The contract will be available to all game publishers, although some game composers remain skeptical about whether others (in addition to Microsoft) will use it. It’s been a thorny issue for years, among studio musicians and their union reps, as seen in this story from six years ago.
My editors at Variety asked me for a slightly different spin on TV music this year. I had been fascinated by how many composers felt strong support for orchestral scores at ABC, singling out Dawn Soler, the head of music for ABC Studios. Here‘s the story.