Behind the Scenes with Pete

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Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Music and blog by Pete Jackson

I’ve always been a big fan of music that is written for the movies. There are some film scores that have been in my collection for years and have always been a great source of inspiration. Growing up, while all my friends had Guns n’ Roses and Bon Jovi albums, I was collecting the film scores of John Williams, Thomas Newman, James Newton Howard and Hans Zimmer. I know, I know, what a nerd-bird, right? Of course. I’ll accept nerd-bird status for this one. Who else do you know that has a thousand-plus CD film score library and who blares orchestral music day and night in their own household? Just ask my wife…

I was such a film score buff growing up that when I was in college I made a rash decision to minor in music, not ever having seriously played an instrument before (and ignoring my parents’ (smart) advice to minor in business as a logical backup in case my foray into entertainment did not work out). But I was glad I did and I aced all my music classes primarily because I was passionate about something fairly unique (even for those crusty, old professors who had spent their whole life studying classical music). For example, any time I had to write a paper for a music class, I would always figure out a way to relate everything to film music. All of the professors must have thought it was a nice change of pace because I always got A’s on the papers while everyone else who was actually planning a career in music did poorly.

As adamant as I was about music during college, I lost the drive to actually learn how to properly compose music over the years. Life tended to get in the way. But every once in a while an emotion would expand into something larger, so much so that I got a small keyboard to attach to my Mac for those times when the only way to truly express something was through music.

It was always a dream of mine to one day be able to write some music that would be used in a feature film. Now, I find myself in the unique position of being able to write music for the film that Joe and I are currently shooting. I don’t think I have the technical know-how to be able to do it all myself, but I do have some thematic material in the works. Some of you may have already heard it at the end of our promo videos. I wrote the Conan Or Bust theme song one day after Joe and I had a long conversation about the project. More recently, Joe and I had a great time collaborating on a jingle that you’ll hopefully hear in an upcoming video. In case you can’t tell, we both get a thrill out of doing things that reach outside of the realm of what we typically do on a daily basis. Writing music is one of those things.

Here’s another introspective cue I wrote that is inspired by the film. Let’s call it “What you think of when you’re driving across the country in the middle of the night.” - Pete Jackson


Tuesday, January 18, 2011