Film.Music.Media: Podcast
Matthew Margeson (Composer: Rocketman)

Matthew Margeson (Composer: Rocketman)

May 26, 2019

Composer Matthew Margeson has been behind some of the most stylistic and bold scores in recent memory. His work on films such as Kick-Ass 2, the Kingsman franchise, Eddie The Eagle, Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children, and now Rocketman has showcased his versatility across many genres.

Matt joins us for his second All Access, this time to dive into the amazing world of the Elton John biopic, Rocketman. Matt reunites with Eddie The Eagle director, Dexter Fletcher for this wondrous yet dramatically heavy exploration of the highs and lows of Elton John’s life as he exploded into one of the biggest musical artists of all time.

Learn how Matt worked alongside renowned producer Giles Martin (son of George Martin) to help blur the lines between song and score. While Giles Martin and his team were responsible for reimagining Elton John’s classic songs, Matt worked alongside to write a score that created a seamless musical narrative. Matt also shares how he worked closely with director Dexter Fletcher to find the right tone and approach for Rocketman and how to support the creative vision of the film.

We explore other topics such as what Matt learned early in his career working for composers such as Henry Jackman and Hans Zimmer, and what fuels his inspiration for writing music today.

A Film.Music.Media Interview | Produced & Presented by Kaya Savas

Dean DeBlois & John Powell (Director & Composer: How To Train Your Dragon Trilogy)

Dean DeBlois & John Powell (Director & Composer: How To Train Your Dragon Trilogy)

May 10, 2019

[Watch the video interview on our YouTube Channel]

**SPOILER WARNING**: This interview contains spoilers for the entire How To Train Your Dragon trilogy.

Writer/director Dean DeBlois and composer John Powell went on an immense 10-year journey together when they embarked on the first How To Train Your Dragon movie over a decade ago.

Now, the trilogy has been completed with a beautiful 3-act structure that has given us three films filled to the brim with beautiful and emotionally resonating storytelling.

Now, for a truly special All Access, we are joined by both Dean and John for an unforgettable conversation about the filmmaking process. We dive into all 3 movies starting from the beginning. Learn about how both Dean and John approached their different roles, and how they worked together.

Other topics include the overall animation process, working with temp scores, working within a PG rating but still pushing boundaries in storytelling, finding themes, finding the look and tone of the films, where inspiration comes from, how to know when something is working vs not working, how to handle sequels, and so much more. This entire interview is an immense exploration into filmmaking and storytelling, and should not be missed.

So pour some wine, pull up a chair, and join Dean and John for a conversation full of laughs, surprises and much more in this in-depth exploration of the filmmaking process, the director/composer relationship, and why we love to tell stories through images and music.

A Film.Music.Media Interview | Produced & Presented by Kaya Savas

Siddhartha Khosla (Composer: This Is Us)

Siddhartha Khosla (Composer: This Is Us)

May 10, 2019

Composer Siddhartha Khosla’s music has been the backbone to a multitude of TV series such as The Royals, The Runaways, The Kids Are Alright, and the hit NBC series This Is Us. His versatility and talents as a storyteller have made him a standout voice in the industry.

Siddhartha shares his path to becoming a composer and how spending his early life in India helped shape his musical taste and heritage. Siddhartha talks about all the many musical influences in his life, and how a phone call from an old college buddy convinced him to come score a TV series.

That college buddy was Dan Fogelman, the creator of This Is Us. It was Dan who called up Siddhartha back when he had the show The Neighbors on ABC, and Dan convinced Siddhartha to come score the second season of that series. This sparked a creative relationship that then carried over to This Is Us, where Siddhartha gets to truly explore his voice as a storyteller.

Learn about the musical approach to This Is Us and how Siddhartha approached scoring the pilot, and then fleshed out the music through the first season. Learn how the music evolves across the 3 seasons of the show so far, and how Siddhartha tackles the show’s unique structure of multiple storylines, flashbacks, and flash forwards. Siddhartha also talks about using elements of Indian music in the score, and how creator Dan Fogelman encourages him to go down unique paths that speak to Siddhartha’s musical stylings.

Siddhartha Khosla’s versatility and ability to hone in and help characters and emotions feel organic have become an essential part of what makes This Is Us work so well. It was a real pleasure to explore his process and gain insight from his career path so far.

A Film.Music.Media Interview | Produced & Presented by Kaya Savas

Alan Silvestri (Composer: Avengers: Endgame)

Alan Silvestri (Composer: Avengers: Endgame)

April 25, 2019

[Watch the video interview on our YouTube Channel]

He got Arnold to the choppa, put the fly in Marty McFly, helped Forrest run like the wind blows, made sure we found out who framed Roger Rabbit, made you cry over a volleyball, and is now making sure Thanos is put in his place.

Honored to welcome back composer Alan Silvestri for another in-depth All Access interview. In this conversation we dissect some of Alan’s early defining moments that set him on the path to becoming composer, early mistakes he made that served as teachable moments, and we break down his creative process and what it truly means to be a storyteller. Other topics include overcoming self-doubt, how living through both happy and sad life moments help make you a better storyteller, working with directors, becoming the character you’re writing for and much more.

In our previous All Access we looked at a lot of Alan’s iconic projects, but here we breakdown some of the most iconic themes Alan has written from films like Predator, Back To The Future, Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, Forrest Gump and of course Avengers. Learn the thought process behind some of these themes and how they came to be.

Listen to How Alan approached his Marvel scores as we reflect back on Captain America: The First Avenger, Avengers, Avengers: Infinity War and the big finale that is Avengers: Endgame.

A Film.Music.Media Interview | Produced & Presented by Kaya Savas

Christopher Young (Composer: Pet Sematary)

Christopher Young (Composer: Pet Sematary)

April 25, 2019

[Watch the video interview on our YouTube Channel]

Christopher Young’s talent as a storyteller is only rivaled by his kindness as a human being. Chris has firmly cemented himself as one of the most iconic film composers across a variety of genres, but it was in the horror genre where he was able to carve a path for his career early on.

We dive into Chris’s path to becoming a storyteller including early scores like A Nightmare On Elm Street 2, Hellraiser, and working for legendary filmmaker Roger Corman. Chris explores what got him into horror and why he seems to come back to the genre even though his career is not defined by it.

We explore Chris’s work from scores like Hard Rain, The Core, Bandits, The Shipping News, The Grudge, Spider-Man 3, Sinister, The Monkey King, and of course his new score to Pet Sematary.

Other topics include working with directors, avoiding typecasting, finding the first note, teaching, and finding inspiration from within the film you’re working on.

Chris is one of the kindest and most sincere people in the business, and it was a real honor to have him for this All Access.

A Film.Music.Media Interview | Produced & Presented by Kaya Savas

David Schwartz (Composer: Arrested Development | The Good Place | Veep)

David Schwartz (Composer: Arrested Development | The Good Place | Veep)

April 14, 2019

[Watch the video interview on our YouTube Channel]

When you think of smart and engaging television, good chances are that David Schwartz is behind the music of that show. David has scored series such as Northern Exposure, Arrested Development, The Good Place and is now scoring the final season of Veep.

For this All Access we dive in with David to explore his background and his path to becoming a composer. David shares some incredibly fun stories about working on Northern Exposure and what his process is when approaching his writing.

We talk about how David met Mitchell Hurwitz on The John Larroquette Show, and how that relationship was built over several other series before Mitchell had the opportunity to create Arrested Development and bring David onboard for that journey.

We dissect The Good Place, and how David worked with creator Michael Schur who came from shows like The Office and Parks And Rec that used no score. Learn how Michael Schur learned to embrace music in a series and trust David.

We tackle other topics as well such as writing a main theme, finding the write tone, what it feels like for a series you’re working on to get cancelled, and so much more!

A Film.Music.Media Interview | Produced & Presented By Kaya Savas

Gabriel Mann (Composer: A Million Little Things | Modern Family)

Gabriel Mann (Composer: A Million Little Things | Modern Family)

April 9, 2019

[Watch the video interview on our YouTube Channel]

Gabriel Mann is a composer, songwriter, singer and part of the LA-based alternative rock band The Rescues. Gabriel’s path to becoming a composer is a fascinating one, and his entire career journey has lead him to be one of the most prolific television composers in the industry.

We discuss Gabriel’s early work in video game scoring, which included games in the iconic Crash Bandicoot and Spyro game franchises. Hear Gabriel talk about his early days assisting composer David Schwartz, working on shows like Arrested Development. We also dig deep into Gabriel’s score for the hit ABC series, A Million Little Things. Plus we look back at the legacy of Modern Family and how that show is such a unique project for a composer.

If you’re interested in the world of television then you’ll want to listen to Gabriel’s in-depth discussions about how composers get jobs during pilot season, finding the sound for a series in season 1, the differences between single-cam and multi-cam series, and what it takes to write a perfect main title theme (including why The Simpsons is Gabriel's favorite main title of all-time).

Gabriel’s amazing charisma and personality makes him a joy to talk with and listen to, and in this interview he truly opens up in the most fun and inspiring way.

Interview Produced & Presented By: Kaya Savas

Nathan Barr (Composer: The House With A Clock In Its Walls)

Nathan Barr (Composer: The House With A Clock In Its Walls)

April 9, 2019

[Watch the video interview on our YouTube Channel]

Nathan Barr's passion and curiosity in unique instruments from around the world, including one made from a human femur, has made him one of the most versatile composers working today. His scores for Cabin Fever, Hostel, Hemlock Grove and True Blood have secured his place as a horror composer. But his scores in various other genres like The Americans, Sneaky Pete, and The Son showcase his versatility as a storyteller across any genre.

In this All Access we dive into Nathan's path to becoming a composer as well has his recent score for The House With A Clock In Its Walls, which sees him reuniting with director Eli Roth. Nathan also talks about what to expect in his upcoming score for Carnival Row on Amazon.

Nathan also recently acquired and restored a 1928 Wurlitzer Theater Organ that used to be installed at 20th Century Fox Studios. He ended up building his studio around it, and Bandrika Studios is now home to some of the most interesting mechanical and automated instruments from around the world. Nathan talks about the history of the Wurlitzer and how it came to be at his studio, and how he's utilizing antique instruments in his modern workflows.

Nathan's passion and curiosity as a storyteller is extremely engaging and contagious. By just spending a little time with him, you immediately want to jump down the rabbit hole into a wonderful world where the past meets the present.

Stay tuned for an upcoming video where we will get a personal tour from Nathan Barr as he walks us through his studio and demos some of the amazing instruments at Bandrika, including the wonderful Wurlitzer.

Interview Produced & Presented By: Kaya Savas

Nicholas Britell (Composer: Vice | If Beale Street Could Talk)

Nicholas Britell (Composer: Vice | If Beale Street Could Talk)

January 8, 2019

[Watch the video interview on our YouTube Channel]

In this All Access we are joined by Academy Award nominated composer, Nicholas Britell. Based out of New York, Nicholas has quickly garnered critical acclaim after he found himself thrust into the world of film composing.

Through some chance meetings and introductions, Nicholas found himself scoring for amazing directing talents such as Natalie Portman, Steve McQueen, Adam McKay and Barry Jenkins. These collaborations led to scores such as A Tale Of Love And Darkness, 12 Years A Slave, The Big Short, Moonlight, and recently Vice and If Beale Street Could Talk.

In this All Access we dive into Nicholas's path to becoming a composer, and what the turning point was for him to make a career out of his passion. We discuss working with directors like Steve McQueen, Adam McKay and Barry Jenkins. Nicholas breaks down his approach on scores like The Big Short, Moonlight, Vice, and If Beale Street Could Talk. We also look at how Nicholas wrote all the diegetic music for 12 Years A Slave, and how different that process was compared to writing the actual score which was done by Hans Zimmer.

We cover a whole slew of other great topics that pick apart the composing process and how Nicholas learned to build new ways of collaborating with filmmakers to truly find what is best for the scene. Nicholas is one of the most talented and in-demand voices in the industry, and it was a joy to finally have him as a guest.

Interview Produced & Presented By: Kaya Savas

Special Thanks: Nicholas Britell, Asenath Nakayama, Jeff Sanderson, Ray Costa, Annapurna Pictures, Chasen & Company, Costa Communications

Diane Warren (Songwriter “I’ll Fight” from RBG)

Diane Warren (Songwriter “I’ll Fight” from RBG)

January 3, 2019

[Watch the video interview on our YouTube Channel]

Diane Warren has written hundreds of hit songs including “Because You Loved Me”, “If I Could Turn Back Time”, “Rhythm Of The Night”, “I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing” and many more. Diane has won a Grammy Award, an Emmy Award, a Golden Globe Award, three consecutive Billboard Music Awards for Songwriter of the Year, and has been nominated for nine Academy Awards.

Many of her songs were written for films, and have then gone on to be launched into the stratosphere of pop culture. In recent years her music has tackled incredibly important subjects. She has written “Til It Happens To U” with Lady Gaga, “Stand Up For Something” with contributions from Common, and of course now “I’ll Fight” which was performed by Jennifer Hudson for the documentary RBG, about Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

In this All Access we find the extremely fun and down-to-earth Diane taking some time to talk about why she wanted to become a songwriter, and how she got her foot in the door. She talks about the different approaches to writing melodies and lyrics, and why music is such a powerful tool for expressing ourselves and commenting on the world around us.

Interview Produced & Presented By: Kaya Savas

Special Thanks: Diane Warren, Jeff Sanderson, Chasen & Company