Why do directors use more and more existing songs in their films?

Until the early 90s, directors generally asked composers to create the soundtrack for their films. John Williams, Jerry Goldsmith, Hans Zimmer, John Barry, James Horner, Ennio Morricone or Danny Elfman (to name a few) are among the best known film composers. Their music, present in countless films, has left its mark in the history of cinema.

Image for post
Image for post

Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper and Quentin Tarantino

Fifty years ago, Easy Rider, conceived by its main actors, Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper, with co-author Terry Southern, broke the tradition of orchestral music by having a soundtrack almost exclusively composed of existing hippie-rock songs.

In 1994, young director Quentin Tarantino followed in their footsteps with his film Pulp Fiction and the soundtrack which included some American rock and roll, surf, pop and soul music from the 60s and 70s.

Since then, many directors have followed the trend, including Martin Scorsese or John Hughes.

“One thing about using music in movies that’s so cool, is the fact that if you do it right, if you use the right song, in the right scene; really when you take songs and put them in a sequence in a movie right, it’s about as cinematic a thing as you can do. You are really doing what movies do better than any other art form; it really works in this visceral, emotional, cinematic way that’s just really special.” Tarantino explained to Far Out magazine last June.

An economic boon for record companies

Aware of the substantial profits they could make from this trend, record companies and independent labels have gradually made their catalog more accessible and attractive to directors and film producers, in particular by reducing, or even giving up their license fees.

This policy has borne fruit since the vast majority of films and series now include several existing songs in their soundtrack.

However, original music has not completely disappeared from films, series and commercials. Would the Stranger Things series be the same without the music composed by Kyle Dixon and Michael Stein?

Getting original music, a constant headache for directors

Another reason often given by directors to explain the massive use of existing songs in their projects is that finding the right composer, briefing them and negotiating with them, or their agent, takes time and sometimes even too much time. As for the quality of the music that will be delivered, it is obviously never guaranteed.

This explains why some composers, such as Hans Zimmer, usually produce a large part of the soundtrack even before shooting has begun.

But what would happen if these problems could be overcome?

What if the offer of custom or exclusive music took more into account the concerns of the client?

Would directors and creatives be more willing to use it again?

We are convinced of this. And so was born the contest-based music marketplace BABY YOU CAN WRITE MY TRACK.


Image for post
Image for post

BABY YOU CAN WRITE MY TRACK is a brand new platform which allows directors and creatives to post a call for tenders and send it in just a few clicks to hundreds of selected film composers and indie artists around the world whose profiles match the requirements of their projects. Directors can then choose to collaborate with those whose proposals are the most interesting, without leaving the platform. On average, during the test phase, 87% of the submitted contests have resulted in the delivery of the final music within 52 hours, thus offering an efficient and rapid solution for directors.

Directors and creatives have every advantage in using the services of BABY YOU CAN WRITE MY TRACK since there is no purchase commitment and posting a call for tenders is completely free.

We believe that tomorrow some directors will involve several composers, instead of working with just one, thus increasing the creativity of their soundtracks, making them unique.

To learn more about the services: writemytrack.com

Written by

Contest-based music marketplace for filmmakers and creatives. https://www.writemytrack.com/

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store