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my youtube channel has been rather dormant for a while. it has been recently cleaned up, and new weekly segments will start appearing soon: friday in the studio – a peek into what i happen to be working on that day. episodes 1-3 are up now. composer tutorials – addressing questions about process and workflow. word of the week – helping to improve vocabularies everywhere. subscribe now, here. thank...

facelift

          in anticipation of a sleek new website design, this current version has been optimized and consolidated. the music, visuals, and about pages are easier to find and interact with. stay tuned for a new site, coming by year’s end. thanks for...

5 social media “dos” for young film composers

  Following up from my post, yesterday (The 5 “Don’ts”), I generally like to end on a positive note. Today – having listed what I feel are the most common and egregious online errors that young film composers make – I’d like to continue with some suggestions about how to foster active, positive, social media habits. Our situation will only improve if we stand up for ourselves, behave with unfailing professionalism, and never undervalue ourselves or our colleagues. We are not our competition. We are our professional network. Here we go… The 5 Social Media “Dos” for Young Film Composers   1. DO seek out new projects in interesting places. I often find paid work on terrific projects in unexpected online places. Ask yourself what your niche is, as a composer, and where filmmakers who share your interests might congregate. Rather than post broad and desperate calls for Attention To Be Paid (again, this simply does not work), instead, micro-target your offers to projects that you feel you’d be the best suited to tackle. Make direct contact with directors and producers. Send them short, to-the-point, gracious, bullshit-free, introductory emails, containing easy-to-click links to your Soundcloud page and your Demo Reel. If they want to see more picture, then follow up with a link to your YouTube page. Apart from your Demo Reel, don’t lead with images. Often, when someone hears a piece of music – together with picture they don’t like – it is tough for them to divorce the imagery from your music. Let the music speak for itself, and allow them to visualize your music in conjunction with the images in their head – or in their project –...

5 social media “don’ts” for young film composers

  I recently brought up some “Dos” and “Don’ts” for composers entering the film business to a professional development presentation for a class of grad students, and I thought I’d take a moment to share these with you. I see these mistakes being made all the time on forums, Facebook, Twitter, and everywhere else. If you want to be a professional, it’s best to start presenting yourself to the world as a professional. Anything less than that hurts all of us. So here we go: 5 Social Media “Don’ts” for Young Film Composers   1. DON’T make general offers of music on forums, message boards, or any other public site. This casts way too wide a net, makes you look desperate, and is a waste of time, since no-one really listens to these posted tracks with any degree of seriousness, anyway.   2. DON’T make general offers on any of your social media pages. It’s very easy to think that your social media pages are perfect advertising billboards, but it’s important for you to consider how you are advertising. Imitating a TV lawyer and going with the “Do you need a film composer? Then I’m your guy!” route is not the way to go.   3. DON’T beg. Too often, young composers are so hungry for work that they will run around the internet begging for random projects to hire them. This, again, makes you look desperate, and is also unprofessional.   4. DON’T enter contests. You are a professional. If anything, you should be helping judge contests. This is not ancient Rome. We are not on the floor of...

the newest of news

It’s been a very busy few weeks here at Blue Police Box Music, and there will be a lot of opportunities to see what I’ve been up to coming up in May! Scary Normal, our little feature that could, is screening – in competition – at the Golden Egg Film Festival in Cancun, Mexico, April 30th – May 7th. We are in the running for Best Feature, Best Feature Director (Jennifer Bechtel), and Best Actress (April Cleveland). It’s an honor to be nominated, of course! I’ll be on an industry panel, entitled “Rockin’ Music, Rollin’ Film: Creative Collaborations of Musicians and Filmmakers” as part of CIMMFest 2014. This Sunday – May the 4th (be with you) – at 2:00pm. Collaboraction in Wicker Park. I’m thrilled to be on a panel with John McNaughton, Wendy Jo Carlton, and some other serious pros. Hope to see you there! Our two recently wrapped short film projects – Bowes Academy and Safe Word – will be coming to film festivals this summer! Stay tuned! I’m currently working on the brilliant short film, “Get The F K Out Of Paris” – which will knock your socks off – and getting ready to hit the ground running on TV, film, and dance projects this summer! Thanks, as always, for listening and spreading the word! -d.  ...

news: “love taps,” outer voices, “alex & ali,” short-film-a-palooza, and more…

It’s a very busy next couple of weeks, here, at BPB! Here’s the scoop: Love Taps, the full-length tap opera that I originally wrote, with Chicago Tap Theatre Artistic Director Mark Yonally, in 2010 is being remounted next week. With a new script by poetry slam creator Marc Kelly Smith, and a live on-stage band playing the brand new arrangements, it’s going to be a really exciting show. The audience gets to be a dating website, to choose a different second act every night! Running March 14, 15, 21, & 22 at 8m, and March 17 & 23 at 3pm. Stage 773. 1225 W. Belmont. Go here for tickets!   Outer Voices is a brand-new vocal group – founded by composers Kenn Kumpf and Robert Reinhart – dedicated to the performance of obscure one-per-part vocal repertoire from before 1750 and after 1950. I’m really thrilled and quite humbled to be performing with this group in their debut concert on Sunday, March 16th, at the Swedish American Museum in Andersonville. It’s a free concert, and suitable for all ages. We would love to see you there.   At the beginning of February, I had the pleasure of heading out to LA to work on the final sound mix of Alex & Ali, the highly-anticipated documentary that I’ve been working on for almost 2 years. Director Malachi Leopold, Associate Music Producer Gabriel Dib, and I had the incredible honor of working with legendary sound mixer Geoffrey Rubay (Basic Instinct, The Fifth Element, Serenity) at Sony Studios in Culver City, and the results are nothing short of stunning. We’re looking very forward...