India.Arie Simpson is among a small class of post-millennial R&B artists more likely to recall the likes of Roberta Flack and Bill Withers than almost any given artist played by urban contemporary radio stations. Continue reading
Enjoy this Valentine’s Day playlist of today’s top love songs recorded with Los Angeles AFM Local 47 musicians, courtesy of #ListenLA:
The 60th annual GRAMMYs are a wrap — and what a night it was for Los Angeles musicians!
Bruno Mars swept the 60th annual GRAMMYs, taking home awards in all categories nominated including the night’s biggest wins: Record of the Year and Album of the Year (“24K Magic”), and Song of the Year (“That’s What I Like”). The Los Angeles AFM Local 47 artist also won in the categories of Best R&B Album, Song and Performance.
Read the full story and complete list of 2018 GRAMMY-winning recordings featuring AFM Local 47 musicians at listen-la.com.
It’s never easy to say goodbye to a friend. Gene Wilder was a friend to many the world over, who were familiar with his zany genius starring in such classic films as The Producers, Blazing Saddles, Young Frankenstein, and so many more.
He too was a friend to the Los Angeles music scoring community, whose members created the music to a majority of his most beloved films.
Wilder left us peacefully, at his home surrounded by loved ones, on August 28, 2016, at the age of 83. Read his obituary here.
Congratulations to all the Los Angeles AFM Local 47 members who received 67th Annual Emmy Awards nominations, and to all of the talented L.A. musicians who performed on an impressive 50 of this year’s nominated series, commercials & TV specials!
View the full list of Local 47-scored nominees at listen-la.com!
At once slickly modern and touched by nostalgia, The Bridge Recording stands true to its name as a testament to bridging past and present. Sparing no effort or expense, owner/engineer Greg Curtis opened the doors of his dream vision in 2010. The 6,500 square foot scoring and mixing facility houses an 1,800 square foot stage with 23 foot ceilings, two large ISO rooms and a spacious control room. Among the equipment and decor are various nods to the past, none more prominent than the behemoth Neve 96-channel console with provenance from Paramount’s historic Stage M.
Besides being the home of the USC scoring sessions and the likes of Adele and Idina Menzel, the studio records a host of today’s top TV shows including “Da Vinci’s Demons,” ”Once Upon A Time,” “Constantine,” “The Simpsons” and “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” to name just a few. At a recent “Person of Interest” scoring session, Curtis welcomed interviewer Linda A. Rapka and photographer Erik Rynearson to share how The Bridge in just a few short years finds itself as one of the hottest recording spots in town.
Tell me how you became involved in the recording industry.
I’ve been a lifelong musician, a trumpet player, since 5th grade in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. That would set the trajectory for my life in music. I still play a little bit, but I spend so much time here and am mainly at home with my family and three kids, ages 3, 5 and 7. That’s prime time for me. I want to give them as much time as I can while I can. That’s a luxury to have.
When setting out to cover songs by the incomparable Billie Holiday, what more of an homage could one make than to record them in the very same room as Ms. Holiday herself did over 60 years ago?
Last month, British singer/songwriter and former “X Factor” finalist Rebecca Ferguson did just that when she hopped on a plane to Hollywood and spent two days within the famed walls of Capitol Studios. A stellar group of 20 Los Angeles string musicians was contracted by Ross deRoche, who was delighted at the results.
On the heals of two new Emmy nominations for his music for “House of Cards,” Jeff Beal talks about composing for the hit Los Angeles-scored series
Beautifully underscoring the dramatic intrigue of Netflix series “House of Cards,” Jeff Beal’s darkly atmospheric score just garnered two more Emmy nominations. This marks the composer’s third Emmy nod for the show, and 13th altogether.
To date, Beal has won three times, including for the 2007 TNT miniseries “Nightmares & Dreamscapes” and USA Network’s detective series “Monk” in 2003, which were also scored here with our wonderful Los Angeles musicians.
Recorded at his home studio, music for “House of Cards” features more than a dozen of L.A.’s premiere string musicians. Beal spoke with Linda A. Rapka from his home studio about composing for the hit series.
Congratulations on your recent Emmy nominations for “House of Cards”! For both seasons, you’ve recorded in your home studio with Los Angeles musicians.
“They’re fantastic. I have a room in my studio where I do a lot of live recording. With the tight schedules and turnaround times these days being what they are, I love being able to call on the best players in the world and have them available at the drop of a hat. It’s a luxury to work with them. They know the kind of stuff I write, and over the years we have developed a shorthand with each other. It’s nice not having to over-explain to musicians your approach to making music; here a lot of that is sort of a given.”
Brian Tyler scores big on the new “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” movie
The latest reboot of the classic “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” film series boasts an orchestral score by Los Angeles composer Brian Tyler and a 70-plus piece orchestra contracted by Peter Rotter.
On the famed Eastwood scoring stage on the Warner Bros. lot in Burbank, the scoring sessions took place over several days in June.
Read more and check out photos from one of the recording sessions at listen-la.com!
Clausen reflects on 25 years making music for TV’s favorite dysfunctional cartoon family
When “The Simpsons” first aired in 1989, no one expected it to become the longest-running situation comedy ever on TV — especially not composer Alf Clausen, who almost didn’t take the job. Clausen, who this year celebrates 25 years with the show, was initially more interested in composing for dramas and repeatedly turned down requests from Fox producers and show creator Matt Groening to compose for the show. After much cajoling, he signed on with “The Simpsons,” starting off with “Treehouse of Horror,” the third episode of season two, in 1990. He’s been with the yellow-skinned dysfunctional family ever since, and to date has scored 534 of the 550 episodes, receiving two Emmy awards and 21 additional nominations for his work on the show along the way. Clausen speaks here with Linda A. Rapka about spending the past quarter century with “The Simpsons.”
Your “Simpsons” music was just performed the TV Academy’s Score! concert. What was it like to hear it live?
“I thought it was great, it was so inspirational. I know the crowd really enjoyed it too. The orchestra played it beautifully.”
I love that you chose “Stonecutters Song” from “Homer the Great” – a personal favorite of mine. Whose idea was it to change the lyric from “Who makes Steve Guttenberg a star” to “Kim Kardashian”?
“And ‘Oscar’ to ‘Emmy.’ That was producer Mark Watters’ doing. It was really funny.” Continue reading