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Conrad Pope on James Horner

Here’s an interesting video from Chris Siddall’s channel (lots of great stuff there) interviewing Conrad Pope about James Horner, and particularly The Rocketeer:

It’s fun to hear about the old days, before mockups, of pencil-and-paper, and people pulling all-nighters to get the scores ready for the orchestra the next morning.

One interesting thing Conrad says is how, as an orchestrator, it could be freeing to work from a sketch and a piano demonstration rather than a full synth mockup.

I don’t have a lot of regrets in life, but if there’s one thing I could change, I would have taken piano, and not the Suzuki violin method, when I was five or six.

I think it’s absolutely true that many of the best composers have great keyboard skills, which lets them realize their vision with great speed and efficiency.

And I think there’s a clarity and simplicity that comes from a piano demo, as opposed to all the bells and whistles of a synth demo.

Basically, to be a good piece of music, it has to be able to survive being stripped down to its keyboard essentials.

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Mark So
Mark So
23 de out. de 2023

Take heart: Hugo Friedhofer, one of the GOATs, could barely plunk out a tune. Can't seem to find it now, but there was an old Tony Thomas program, I believe, with a long visit to Friedhofer's studio, in which he demonstrates his stunning lack of keyboard chops. If I remember correctly, he also plays some of his rejected music from Lifeboat on the cello, his native instrument.


Popa Razzie71
Popa Razzie71
19 de out. de 2023

And missing all the different variations that they used to come up with thanks to labels like Intrada la La land records and the rest that dig up all the mixes that have survived the years

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