I just read an excellent interview with music supervisor Wendy Levy. If you’re thinking about writing and pitching your songs to the Film & TV market (and you should be) here’s some information from a music supe who has used A LOT of songs in shows like The Fosters, Beauty and the Beast, Ravenswood, 90210, The Client List, Life Unexpected, and many more.
One thing in particular struck me as especially good advice. Levy says: “My job as a music supervisor is to identify the unique voice of each show – like a sonic paint box – with the tone and voice of the production. I present material to the producers to find out what they like. As characters evolve each season, the music changes to fit into that world.”
As a songwriter, you should be aware of the “unique voice” of a show. Watch a few episodes of a show like The Fosters, Gossip Girl, Parenthood, or Nashville. You’ll notice that the songs are quite different on each show. Keep a record of the songs being used, or look them up on Tunefind.com. Then study those songs to get a feel for the type of lyric, melody, production, and vocal style that works for the show. When you get a chance to pitch to the music supervisor – or to a music library that will do the pitching for you – be sure you’re on target and nail the signature sound.
Here’s the rest of the interview. (Interview with Wendy Levy by Shantell Ogden for Berklee Blogs.)