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Music Composition for Film and Television (Music Composition: Film Scoring) Paperback – Dec 2011

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Product details

  • Paperback: 278 pages
  • Publisher: Omnibus Press (Dec 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0876391226
  • ISBN-13: 978-0876391228
  • Product Dimensions: 22.9 x 1.7 x 30.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 187,548 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

(Berklee Guide). Learn film-scoring techniques from one of the great film/television composers of our time. Lalo Schifrin shares his insights into the intimate relationship between music and drama. The book is illustrated with extended excerpts from his most iconic scores such as Mission: Impossible, Cool Hand Luke, Bullitt and many others and peppered with anecdotes from inside the Hollywood studios. Schifrin reveals the technical details of his own working approach, which has earned him six Oscar nominations, 21 Grammy nominations (with four awards), and credits on hundreds of major productions. Includes the full score of Schifrin's Fanfare for Screenplay and Orchestra, a treasure-trove of unfettered dramatic sound painting, commissioned by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and a great thesis on the emblematic language of film music.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I purchased the Kindle Edition of this book and am very pleased to say that it takes pride of place on my digital bookshelf. Therefore I wholeheartedly recommend it to musicians with a passion for notating and composing atmospheric themes.

Lalo Schifrin is a pioneering music maestro and very well known amongst film and jazz music circles. He has a highly impressive repertoire to his credit. I have grown up listening to and feeling inspired by his music. In fact, anyone who has enjoyed listening to and truly appreciates orchestral and digital hybrid movie scores will get value from this remarkable book which is amply illustrated with music score extracts and witty anecdotes from recording sessions. A thorough understanding of music theory whilst not essential is highly desirable and will help the reader to get the most out of this volume.

I particularly liked Maestro Schifrin's engaging writing style as it was also conducive to analysing, developing and formalising my own composing technique.

I also liked the tips and the way his hard-earned experience was shared at regular intervals in the text. As one reviewer expressed it is akin to a Masterclass - the scores presented a polished and illustrate valuable strategies in notation and give fascinating insights into the collaborative director-composer relationship in the film-making process.

One suggestion for improvement: The electronic version of the book would have been greatly enhanced by inclusion of links to an accompanying website with excerpts and examples of the music for readers that eg. may not be 100% comfortable with reading notation; but I appreciate that legal ramifications and Copyright Law may have prevented this at the time of publication.

So bravo sir! Thank you for publishing and sharing your knowledge.

Overall an excellent and insightful read and well-deserved five stars!
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By Mankarot on 25 Dec 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Amazing edition with amazin content.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 10 reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
Good But No CD 19 Oct 2012
By frankp93 - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The licensing issues were probably insurmountable, but it's a shame they couldn't include at least a CD of brief excerpts to go along with the scores detailed here. I'm a longtime fan of Schifrin and have many, though not all, of the referenced film and TV works. Unless you're fluent in orchestral score reading or extremely patient, the book will be tough going. Particularly frustrating is the inclusion of a full-length symphonic concert work it would have been terrific to have a recording of.

Schifrin's prose is very readable and interesting: he goes fairly deep into compositional techniques, including his use of Fibonacci series. Schifrin is rumored to have studied the Schillinger System in the 50's, although such numerical techniques were (and continue to be) used by many writers past and present.

This is not a textbook in the sense of presenting guided exercises: think of it more as a master class in which a seasoned pro takes you into his workshop.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
glad he wrote this 20 Mar 2013
By Jesse Sowa - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you're new to this sort of thing, you'll want to start with Henry Mancini, Nelson Riddle, or Don Sebesky's orchestration books first. Any one of those will give you a good survey of the various instruments, their ranges, along with examples of how they're arranged in groups.

This particular book is most similar to Mancini's other book on the Thorn Birds score. You get a lot of content about how to write to convey certain moods, lots of anecdotes that relate what it's like to work on a picture, with a deadline, producers, directors, etc. To me, this is mildly interesting, but I mainly bought this book to see how he voiced his horns and strings. This book is unique in relation to others mentioned because Lalo spent more time in the funk/soul idiom, so you get to see how those type of parts are arranged.

You do get a complete (or nearly) transcription of a piece from "Mission Impossible" and two pieces from "Bullit" (along with other snippets that span his long career). After you study these, you should have a pretty solid idea about how Lalo approached things and what voicings he favors for different situations. Ultimately, I got what I came for, and I'm very appreciative that he wrote this book.

As others have said, the final ~100 pages of the book are his 'fantasie for film' score. It is unaccompanied by any analysis, so feels like an attempt to pad out the length of the book. Might be an interesting study, but hard to be curious about something none of us have ever listened to before.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Not bad but not well thought-out 18 Jan 2013
By Stellita Loukas - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book with the utmost enthusiasm to find out more about film and TV scoring 'devices'.
When a thick book arrived I was more than overjoyed!!
However, half of the book is devoted to a score for which there is ABSOLUTELY NO recording available. I can live with not having an accompanying CD for the recordings one can easily find on iTunes but devoting half a book to a score that has no recording commercially available seems rather pointless to me. While I am a composer myself and I can read a score, it is a whole different matter when you can listen and follow along.

I have enormous respect for the author and his brilliant music and work as a film and TV composer but the book definitely left me wanting for more.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Audio on YouTube 10 Jan 2014
By Todd Billingsley - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
While there is no DVD included with the book, I'm currently on Chapter 3 and have found the audio or video clip of every score example in the book on YouTube. The book assumes one already has studied composition to some degree. So where many film scoring books walk through its process, this one summarizes that information in one chapter, then takes off on providing composition techniques for scoring film, and does it in a concise and very easy-to-understand manner. This is a major step up in resources made available to those interested in film scoring...written by one of the masters.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Loved reading the scores - wish there was audio! 11 Dec 2013
By Peri Strongwater - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Echoing the other reviews here - this would have been an incredible resource if audio examples were included. I really enjoyed reading through the scores. Would have given it 3 stars, but I loved all the fun anecdotes and the personal tone of voice so I gave it 4.
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