Put Yourself in a Music Supervisor’s Shoes

Shortcuts to Songwriting for Film & TVDo you want to get placements in the Film & TV market? Want to sharpen your pitching skills to Film & TV opportunities and get more forwards? Here’s the best exercise I’ve ever found for strengthening your Film & TV songwriting and pitches: Do what a music supervisor does.  Find songs that underscore the emotion, energy, or atmosphere in a scene and test them against the picture!

At the end of this post, I’ll give you some resources for contacting music supervisors and pitching your songs. BUT before you do that, make sure you have what they’re looking for. Don’t burn a contact because you didn’t do your research.  If you’ll spend a couple of afternoons following these instructions, I promise your pitches will be closer to the mark and your film and TV songwriting will be stronger.


 There are dozens of successful TV series using songs. You can find a list of currently airing shows at www.Tunefind.com. In the summer season, there are usually around 30 shows using songs. In the fall, there will be 60 or more.

Find a scene. Many of these shows feature a song in the opening or closing scene of each episode. A song is featured when there’s little or no dialogue over it and the volume is turned up. You should get familiar with these uses. They offer great exposure for your songs and can result in a few thousand downloads at iTunes! Not to mention the fees and royalties that come in over time – these popular shows run for years in syndication and foreign markets.

A few top TV series that regularly feature songs in the opening or closing scenes are: Grey’s Anatomy, Suits, Pretty Little Liars, The Vampire Diaries, Hart of Dixie, Nashville, Sons of Anarchy, Gossip Girl, and Switched At Birth. There are dozens more.

Watch the scene and listen to the song use. Pick a show and episode you’re interested in then buy it at iTunes, or rent or stream it. You’re going to watch the scene several times, so you need to have easy access to it. It may take a few tries to find a scene you want to work with.   Continue reading “Put Yourself in a Music Supervisor’s Shoes”

Where to Listen to Current Music & Artists

Q: I want to learn more about what kind of music is current. Where do you find new music and artists to listen to? Also I want to pitch my songs to film & TV. Where can I hear artists that are being used in that market?

A: If you’re writing songs for today’s radio or film & TV markets, it’s essential to keep your ears “tuned up”! You’ve got to know which artists and songs listeners like, and you need to have a good idea of what the music industry is looking for. Here are five places where you can hear what’s hot right now.

Continue reading “Where to Listen to Current Music & Artists”