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Joe Kraemer: “I haven’t scored a single mainstream Hollywood movie since ‘Rogue Nation’”


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Interesting thread on Twitter by Joe Kramer explaining the state of film scoring right now.     "This is a sad truth for everyone trying to make it in show business - it is virtual

Let's see if I understand the current state of film scoring:   Film producers don't give a shit about the craft of film scoring. Kraemer hasn't had a mainstream gig in 9 years. Elf

That lady is like an industry Snowden

Has anyone heard Kraemer's Doctor Who/Big Finish scores?  Worth picking up?  I love the Who TV scores from Gold and Akinola, and wouldn't mind having more in either of those styles.  I like Kraemer's Mission: Impossible score welll enough and haven't heard anything else, and sci-fi/adventure is much more my scene than action or spy music.

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I bought the LLL CD of those two Doctor Who scores but dont' know if there's a way to listen to any others?

 

I haven't listened to it yet, too much to get through!

 

I think "The Man Who Killed Hitler and then The Bigfoot" is his best score since Rogue Nation, along with Comrade Detective

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Samples sound good enough, at any rate - might blind-buy it if LLL has a decent sale, or even go full price if somebody waxes enthusiastic.

 

Speaking of Doctor Who, I'm still waiting patiently for Gold's swan song season.  I recall the music being quite good when I watched.  WHERE BE IT?  besides leaving a nice sized hole on my shelf.

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Here's the text of his followup so you don't have to click through 7 tweets

 

Quote

I want to thank everyone for their supportive comments about my posts yesterday. Understandably, I've seen a lot of responses that focus on the 'doom and gloom' but let me counter that with some positives: Since 'Rogue Nation', I have been busier than ever - just not on mainstream Hollywood movies - I have scored 'The Man Who Killed Hitler and then Then Bigfoot', 'Emily and The Magical Journey', 'Sunrise' and 'Fluorescent Beast', the tv shows 'Pandora' and 'Creeped Out', the mini-series 'Comrade Detective', and a dozen shorts and pilots, all of which have been warmly received by viewers and listeners. A lifelong dream has come true and my music is being performed by orchestras around the world in concerts (such as the recent AGENTS ARE FOREVER by the Danish National Symphony Orchestra).

 

I have also written dozens of hours of music for one of my favorite franchises, 'Doctor Who', for Big Finish Audio, a company that makes full-cast audio dramas, which have all the sonic impact of movies, without the visual component. This is all to say that there are lots of wonderful opportunities for composers outside the relatively narrow field of mainstream Hollywood Movies. I am a composer and I write music whenever I can. I am very happy to be working with wonderful people now, on projects I enjoy, projects that are artistically fulfilling. If mainstream Hollywood comes knocking, I am delighted to answer the door, but in the meantime, I am very happy to keep working on things I love :)

 

PS - Please don't pester people you THINK I MIGHT be talking about. I didn't name names for a reason - who they are is not important - it's what happened that counted. I told the stories to illustrate the OP's point, not to drag unnamed individuals into a fight. Thank you!

 

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1 hour ago, mstrox said:

Has anyone heard Kraemer's Doctor Who/Big Finish scores?  Worth picking up?  I love the Who TV scores from Gold and Akinola, and wouldn't mind having more in either of those styles. 

 

Gold's stuff is usually excellent, but I think Akinola's is terrible. But I had no idea Kraemer had done anything for the franchise.

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10 minutes ago, Thor said:

 

Gold's stuff is usually excellent, but I think Akinola's is terrible. But I had no idea Kraemer had done anything for the franchise.

 

https://lalalandrecords.com/escape-to-danger-original-soundtracks-from-the-audio-adventures-of-doctor-who-limited-edition/

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17 minutes ago, The Big Man said:

Gold's music is always so loud and constantly on alert, I can't stand it.


I agree, I largely found Gold’s scores annoying.  He certainly had his standout episodes (like “Heaven Sent”) but mostly he was too overbearing 

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I kinda agree with that too, even though it's far more defined and developped as musical pieces than the sound design/generic nonsense that Akinola has been pouring out lately. One can make a smokin' great 70-minute album of highlights from Gold's stuff for his stint at DR. WHO.

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I absolutely love Gold's scores. I don't think they're too loud, but I do think Hans Zimmer was used as a temp track at times though:

 

 

 

Other than that his scores have a lot of heart, vibrancy, and are quite memorable.

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8 minutes ago, Richard Penna said:

I once made a ~2 hour album from series 1-9, but it missed out too much good stuff.

 

The albums for 1-4 at least, are made for you Thor :)

 

Yeah, I've seen every single episode of DR. WHO since 1963 (the ones that are lost, I've listened to as "audio books" with still images), and I've been amazed by a few sequences in Gold's music for the 2005  "resurrection". Also disappointed by others. But if one could trim it down to a 70-minute album, I'm confident it would be chockful of highlights.

 

God almighty, we're off-topic now.

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I agree with the criticism of Gold's work - it's hard to sit through an album at once, and especially when those albums stretched over two or three discs.  Better to listen to an episode in one sitting, at least in the later releases that were long enough to be more representative of whole episodes. To be honest, for me, the highs are so high that it makes any complaint worth it.  

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On 1/28/2021 at 4:33 PM, Erik Woods said:

JIM KNOPF UND DIE WILDE 13

 

Just listened to this on Spotify and I must say it's indeed outstanding. This is the kind of music that I miss in modern Hollywood blockbusters. Is "Jim Knopf and Lukas der Lokomotivführer" (2018) equally good?

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6 hours ago, mstrox said:

Has anyone heard Kraemer's Doctor Who/Big Finish scores?  Worth picking up?  I love the Who TV scores from Gold and Akinola, and wouldn't mind having more in either of those styles.  I like Kraemer's Mission: Impossible score welll enough and haven't heard anything else, and sci-fi/adventure is much more my scene than action or spy music.

 

His score to Jack Reacher works great as a prelude to Rogue Nation!

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1 minute ago, SteveMc said:

Rather disheartening, the condition of the industry, especially for a guy like me with absolutely 0 connections and financial security who entertains a desire to create.  

 

You interested in pursuing music Steve?

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No need to give up on that dream, I think. It just requires intelligence and focus. You're young. Focus on your craft and capitalize on the resources around you, especially as an emerging filmmaker. Eventually, you'll find yourself in the right space for you.

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7 hours ago, mstrox said:

Speaking of Doctor Who, I'm still waiting patiently for Gold's swan song season.  I recall the music being quite good when I watched.  WHERE BE IT?  besides leaving a nice sized hole on my shelf.

I think Gold had said there wasn't enough new music to justify a release - however around that time, right after series 10 - he had a baby so that slowed any chances of a release to nothing and it's been that way for years now. 

 

From Twitter last year:

Quote

In response to a fan on Twitter who asked where the soundtrack is, Gold replied... “stage one: idly considering. stage two: concrete wondering. excited to report we are at stage three: move closer to an actual thing happening. Keep toe.”

 

I've loved Gold's scores for the series, and it's clear the more time and access he had to an orchestra, the more he could accomplish. I agree with some of the complaints of it being loud and annoying at times, but I think mostly that comes down to the music as it was edited and mixed into the episodes, with the editors overlaying several tracks to create a nightmare at times. Some of the best work all the revived series is still unreleased, with each episode warranting a one to two disc album with the sheer volume of music there is. I've yet to see another television series with such a devotion to creating a catalog of themes and motifs and in an orchestral/symphonic tradition.

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I remember people asking Silva Screen about 'their' logic of putting out Akinola's first series before Gold's last, but it doesn't work that way. I'm pretty sure they just put out the album that the composer gives them. As the time, they said something like the music wasn't 'available to licence at this time', which I think was a needlessly diplomatic way of saying Gold hadn't made them an album yet.

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I imagine there’s some expense involved with the BBC Wales orchestra, re-use fees etc. Does anyone know what the situation is there? As far as I can tell Akinola uses a much smaller ensemble more sparingly, with a lot of the underscore carried by sampled instruments. It’s possible that creating an album for his first series was much cheaper and quicker than Gold’s last.

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10 hours ago, Docteur Qui said:

I imagine there’s some expense involved with the BBC Wales orchestra, re-use fees etc. Does anyone know what the situation is there? As far as I can tell Akinola uses a much smaller ensemble more sparingly, with a lot of the underscore carried by sampled instruments. It’s possible that creating an album for his first series was much cheaper and quicker than Gold’s last.

 

The BBC Wales orchestra doesn't seem to have been an impediment thus far, so I'd be surprised if that were a major factor. I put it down to Akinola being fresh to the series and enthusiastic to have an album out there, whereas Gold has likely moved on to his next endeavour.

 

And Akinola's releases so far are really comprehensive - releasing probably about a third of his 11/12 scores, and everything from the NY special. It took Gold until one of Matt Smith's Christmas specials to do a full episode release, although I believe that as of series 8, we've got five full, or nearly full, episode scores.

 

Having said that, there are some episodes, particularly in series 11, where I wouldn't be surprised if they were 100% synth, which would I suppose make it much cheaper. Interestingly, I can't think of a Gold-score episode I particularly want in complete form, whereas I'd love the complete score to Rosa.

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12 hours ago, Richard Penna said:

 

The BBC Wales orchestra doesn't seem to have been an impediment thus far, so I'd be surprised if that were a major factor. I put it down to Akinola being fresh to the series and enthusiastic to have an album out there, whereas Gold has likely moved on to his next endeavour.


Yes that makes sense. I can imagine that assembling/producing your own album would be quite time consuming.

 

I would love it if Gold returned to his Who music at some point - not so much the show as it’s clear he’s moved on, and in any case the show deserves to have new blood working on it. But I’d love it if he rearranged some of the popular themes and recorded suites for them. He really did write a tremendous amount of magnificent music. 

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On 1/29/2021 at 3:27 PM, mstrox said:

Has anyone heard Kraemer's Doctor Who/Big Finish scores?  Worth picking up?  I love the Who TV scores from Gold and Akinola, and wouldn't mind having more in either of those styles.  I like Kraemer's Mission: Impossible score welll enough and haven't heard anything else, and sci-fi/adventure is much more my scene than action or spy music.

 

I have a few of the box sets he scored, though mostly non-Doctor stories about other characters from the universe - "Missy", "The Paternoster Gang", etc. I'd recommend them - apart from the music being very enjoyable (and very Kraemer in style, not a copy of Gold, or Akinola - mostly a mix of adventure/whimsical/mystery idioms), the stories are fun to listen to, the voice acting is great, and most of the sets contain a lengthy suite of Joe's score at the end, which alleviates the fact that there only has been one standalone soundtrack release so far.

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