Film Scores-giving: Or what I’m thankful for this year (in Film Music)

So I am the kind of person who after going into school during break for the sole purpose of getting work done, comes home only to write more on his blog.  It all for you, loyal readers, because I realized that it’s been over three weeks since my last post of any kind.  So in the spirit of giving that is this season, I give this list of things I’m thankful for (film music related) to you.

iTunes: Yes, iTunes.  Though I lament the death of liner notes that will comes with the digital download revolution, the fact that so many scores are so easily available is just remarkable and makes doing research in film music so much easier than it was even 10 years ago.  And now, the score released of Battlestar Galactica by Bear McCreary are even available.

New Books: In the past year, there have seemingly been more new film score books released than one can keep up with.  From Cooke’s lengthy A History of Film Music to Wierzbicki’s more focused, but detailed, Film Music: A History, to Larsen’s simply titled Film Music, the new contributions to the field are staggering.  It gives this future PhD candidate hope for a job upon graduation.

Screen Archives Entertainment and Film Score Monthly:  Together they make available so much music that otherwise might not be released.  Combing back catalogues of various studios, remastering, and then releasing what could be lost gems of previous years, they have done so much to keep alive the film music of the 1950s, ’60s, and ’70s.

Music and the Moving Image IV: Being able to go to New York in May and attend this conference was a great experience.  Not only was it my first major conference experience, hearing the papers given and taking stock of research in the field (what is being researched and how it’s being done) helped affirm what I had already been doing, plus helped me to better hone my ideas and techniques.  I’ve just submitted an abstract for next year, and hope to go again regardless of being accepted or not.

The faculty and colleagues at school:  One always worries about being supported by their professors and academic peers, but I’ve had nothing but support and encouragement as I explore film music as the focus of my  study.  Granted, the field is, by now, well established in musicology, but it’s still new enough that I worried when I decided to take up the banner.

Herr Vogler: Fellow film music enthusiast and blogger, he’s helped me through numerous chats with his depth of knowledge about film music, not to mention loaning me scores.  Lately, he’s been of immense help with transcribing a score for the “Main Title” to Goldsmith’s Planet of the Apes, my final project for Post-Tonal Analysis.  Look for a blog post on my findings in the coming month.

The return of the great sci-fi film (and score?): As any perpetual reader of this blog will know, my love for science-fiction knows almost no bounds, and part of that love is the fact that I think they consistently have some of the best, or at least most interesting, scores.  This summer had 3 great sci-fi films (1 merely okay) and 2 great (1 pretty good and 1 okay, but shows promise) sci-fi scores.  See my summer score wrap-up post for more.  I just hope this is the beginning of a trend.

Well that’s my list for now…hey, I want to at least pretend to be on Thanksgiving break.  I wish all you readers a happy Thanksgiving, wherever you are.

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