Music Supervisors

Interview / Russell Ziecker, Head of Television Music and A&R at Lionsgate

By Amanda DK

Behind many independent music supervisors, especially in the television world, there is a studio executive working with several other independent music supervisors trying to keep multiple shows on course and colleagues on all levels happy.More often than not, these are the less glamorous positions; their names may not be in the credits, but studio music execs are still reading every script, watching every cut, solving clearance struggles and giving creative notes.  Not only that, the creatives on a project (director, producers) can sometimes perceive them as the “bad guy,” pushing corporate studio agendas at the expense of their vision.  The best ones can serve both to an equal degree at the same time – Russell Ziecker is one of these.
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Music in Media / The 2012 Guild Of Music Supervisors Awards (Nominees and Winners)

By Amanda DK

 

Yesterday morning, key players in the field of music supervision all gathered at Magnolia Downtown to honor the outstanding accomplishments of their peers.  The crowd, comprised of music libraries, labels, publishers, studio executives and independent supervisors large and small, was chatty and buoyant (possibly due to the free flowing champagne, mimosas and bellinis), packing the restaurant and spilling out onto both the front and rear patios.  As always, with this tight knit community, it felt more like a casual garden party than a formal affair.  Presenters giggled their way through the lists of nominees, and tossed out industry inside jokes on the fly.  Even a few technical difficulties couldn’t dampen the mood.
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Guest Mixtape + Interview / Madonna Wade-Reed: Adult Fairy Tales

By Amanda DK

Some people think music supervision is just picking the songs trending on blogs that week. While good musical taste is certainly a job requirement, it is by no means the most important skill a music supervisor needs to be truly great. You need to know how to clear a song, how to negotiate, how to draft a license, and not only how to keep track of all that paperwork, but translate the important information to the entire production team – while still keeping everyone happy. The best music supervisors are extremely creative and extremely organized. Madonna Wade-Reed is one such music supervisor.

A spitfire with wild hair and limitless energy, Reed got into “the industry” via the music video world and, after segueing into supervision, has worked on a wide variety of television and film projects. On the film side, A Thousand Words (yet to be released), My Boss’s Daughter, The Perfect Scoreand most recently, the television movies and FRED 2: Night Of The Living Fred and Fred: The Movie (based on Lucas Cruikshank’s popular YouTube character), for which she received a nomination by The Guild of Music Supervisors for their “Best of 2010” awards. On the television side the Montreal, Canada native has music supervised several hit series known for their stellar soundtracks: Summerland, What About Brian, Smallville, Felicity, to name just a few, the last being one of the first to bring attention to music in television, paving the way for the music driven shows of today. She even kicked off the first two seasons of CW mainstay, One Tree Hill, and most recently created the sound for the Charlie’s Angels reboot for ABC, which was unfortunately cancelled a few weeks ago, but featured tracks by artists from Lykke Li to Rise Against to Jennifer Lopez.

In between wrapping up her third season on raunchy college football comedy, Blue Mountain State (Spike) and the January 3rd premiere of Jane By Design (ABC Family), Madonna took time to put together a mix of songs for TA that are guaranteed to take you to a magical place, titled “Adult Fairy Tales.” We then met up at the delightful Oaks Gourmet, where she gave me some insight into her own journey, creating a successful soundtrack, the difference between fairytales for adults and children, and her most transcendent concert experiences (trust me, they can’t be beat).

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Guest Mixtape + Interview / Matt FX “Don’t Like This”

I don’t know about you, but when I was 19 years old my mind was occupied with getting good grades, play rehearsal (I was a theatre nerd), and what I was doing that Saturday night.  Meet Matt “FX” Feldman, who spent his nineteenth birthday hard at work on one of the most hyped telvision shows of the past year.  The job: music supervisor.  The show: Skins, a sexy – often constroversial – adaptation of the UK hit show by the same name.

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Guest Mixtape + Interview / Andrea von Foerster: I Know When I’m Not Wanted

It gives me great pleasure to present to you my very first mixtape and interview from a music supervisor – one that I not only admire professionally, but who also happens to be a really funny, opinionated, and all around awesome person.  She’s most known for her work on (500) Days of Summer and Dollhouse, but Andrea von Foerster has music supervised films and TV shows all over the map, and contributed to tent pole series like Grey’s Anatomy, The OC, and Supernatural. A self-proclaimed “music nerd” von Foerster knows how to use music to tell a story on film – Broken Social Scene did the score for her most recent film, It’s Kind of A Funny Story, which also features music by White Hinterland and The Middle East – and in mixtape form.

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