Articles

Tyler Bates, Billion Dollar Composer

Thursday, July 20th, 2017 at 1:12 pm

If you left Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 unexpectedly moved by the finale, you can thank composer Tyler Bates, whose symphonic and choral work was perhaps his most accomplished yet in films. Bates, a former rock guitarist who still goes out on the road with Marilyn Manson from time to time, has not only… Read More

A new category for this year’s Emmys

Monday, July 17th, 2017 at 12:56 pm

As Emmy Awards season begins, we take an overall look at the nominations in all of the music categories, including the ones for original composition (for a series, for a movie or miniseries, for theme, and original song), for music direction, and the new sixth category, for music supervision. Music supervisors are hailing this decision… Read More

How Spidey’s cartoon theme wound up in the movie

Tuesday, July 11th, 2017 at 6:57 pm

Let’s face it, there is no more famous Spider-Man music than the cartoon theme everybody remembers from the 1960s. (“Is he strong? Listen, bud: he’s got radioactive blood!”) Composer Michael Giacchino, commissioned to score the new Spider-Man: Homecoming film for Marvel/Sony, knew this and decided to replace his own Marvel logo music at the start… Read More

Alan Silvestri scoring new Spielberg film

Friday, July 7th, 2017 at 6:14 pm

It isn’t often that I go after a “scoop” — what we print journalists used to call getting to a hot story first. But when I heard that John Williams would not be scoring both of the Steven Spielberg films currently in production (The Papers and Ready Player One), I thought it was worth the… Read More

Current TV music showcased in Academy concert

Saturday, July 1st, 2017 at 6:15 pm

As you know, I tend to wax nostalgic about classic TV music of the ’60s and ’70s. But there’s a lot of really exciting work being done now in television, too, and much of it was showcased in a Television Academy concert called “Words & Music” Thursday night, June 29, at the Academy’s Saban Media… Read More

Randy Newman Scores “Cars 3”

Tuesday, June 13th, 2017 at 5:48 pm

It’s always a pleasure to interview composer Randy Newman, and even more fun to attend a recording session for one of his movie scores. Newman loves the orchestra — and they love him, as you’ll read in a story for this week’s Variety — and for Cars 3, he used no fewer than 107 musicians…. Read More

Brian Tyler’s massive new “Mummy” score

Friday, June 9th, 2017 at 6:51 am

Composer Brian Tyler (The Fate of the Furious, Avengers: Age of Ultron) penned more than two hours of music for Universal’s remake of The Mummy, including a massive orchestra and choir recorded earlier this year at London’s Abbey Road. I interviewed Brian for Variety, which asked me to place the new Mummy score in the… Read More

Emmy’s new Music Supervision category

Friday, June 2nd, 2017 at 4:51 pm

To launch this season’s Variety coverage of the Emmy race in the music categories, I talked with a TV Academy governor and five music supervisors who may be possible nominees (for such diverse series as Halt & Catch Fire, Outsiders, Empire, Star, 13 Reasons Why and Ray Donovan) in the new category of Outstanding Music… Read More

Stephen Schwartz talks about the “Wicked” movie

Monday, May 22nd, 2017 at 9:03 am

Stephen Schwartz was honored last week with the Founders Award of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP). In addition to covering the annual ASCAP Screen Music Awards for Variety — which featured not only the Schwartz honor but a number of other awards doled out to film, TV and video game composers… Read More

Alan Silvestri Named BMI Icon

Friday, May 12th, 2017 at 12:14 pm

Oscar-nominated, Grammy- and Emmy-winning composer Alan Silvestri received BMI’s Icon Award Wednesday night at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel. His was the top honor among dozens distributed by the performing-rights society. The evening was a who’s-who of composers, songwriters and music supervisors active in films and TV. Variety asked me to cover the event, so I… Read More