FILM COMPOSING: THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND TODAY THE UGLY

The tremendous highs of my career are indescribably cool and memorable. And there are many many of those I cherish. But the ugly is in there too. I’ve had an assistant go behind my back to steal a client at my recording session, I’ve been made promises that didn’t happen. These and a ton more, that I’m sure every professional “acquires” over a career. But today is really a tough one. After giving my heart and soul to a project, the level of disrespect from the producer has translated to him basically refusing to pay me for the hard costs of executing the score, a bill I am stuck with.

There was no fee to begin with, it was a (becoming all too common) “ask” of writing it for the relationship and glory of the gig, with the understanding the producer would pay for the recording, which in this case was full live orchestra. I won’t state the dollar amount other than to say its very big. After numerous friendly attempts over several months to even have a discussion about it, the disrespect has turned to radio silence. My day started by asking my friends for Attorney recommendations, an ask that has just put a pit in my stomach, one I can’t shake.

On top of enduring trying to get the producer to even speak with me for months (long after project completed and released), now I am looking down the path of legal means and what will I’m sure be months more of heart ache. In the end I take responsibility for what transpired, I knew what I was getting into and should taken steps to protect myself better. Just another lesson I’ve learned in what is really a never ending journey in the world of a professional composer, sometimes good, sometimes bad, sometimes down right ugly.

I will say that this is a rarity, I get along with and have remained friends (if not very good friends) with almost every director and producer I have ever worked with. However this one was a case of just clearly being exploited and down right screwed. It’s an incorrigible moment in my career that I won’t soon forget.

I’m by nature a happy and grateful person, my passion and dedication to composing the best music I can has never been higher. Unfortunately the business side of that equation has been dented for me yet again, and a fairly big dent at that.

I wish the project success, because every other aspect of it was a pleasure and a privilege. And I couldn’t be more proud of the music. But today I get the unhappy task of adding another name to my black list of people I will never work with again. Its just a tough day for me, and since I believe all energy is connected, a tough day for all of us in this business.

Keep the faith, Gratitude is the Attitude.

T.