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Your Journey into Game Music Begins Here,
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This review is from: A Composer's Guide to Game Music (Kindle Edition)
Firstly, I am a long time fan of Winifred Phillips. I've been listening to her work for years and it was really exciting to hear she had decided to write a book about the art and industry of VGM.
I had the pleasure of interviewing her for my Podcast The Note Show and also on Primary Trigger
Winfred is one of the most in depth and comprehensive composers in games today and there's always an incredible amount of thought and detail in her works so it's interesting to hear about her processes and mindset when approaching a project and how she thinks about the task of scoring a game. If you're just dipping your toes in the water you couldn't be in better hands.
As someone who dreamed of scoring video games and movies as a teenager and young adult it's also really nice to hear how she first 'discovered' game music as a potential avenue of work and then made her transition into the field... and if you know anything about her, you know just how well that went.
She has a talk that I found really helpful about her score for Assassin's Creed 3: Liberation available on Youtube.
I genuinely think that this book is open to anyone, even if you're not 'musically inclined' (I really don't like that expression) and just happen to enjoy VGM, Film Scores, Electronic Music, or are a gamer interested in one of the most important aspects of the experience. I spoke to someone who just got this book and devoured it after getting an Inon Zur piece stuck in his head and is now fascinated by the whole area; he knew nothing about music past being a casual listener before and I think that's the important takeaway. It's not esoteric or some clandestine tome filled with confusing terminology, it's accessible.
I studied music and I now get to interview people who I've listened to over a lifetime of game playing and this is definitely the best book I've found to pull me back into that world and orientate me to the different processes now employed by composers. It's a new world, and games are really a new frontier of music. Nowhere else presents that paradox of restraints and opportunity for invention in quite the same way.
If you're a student of music or a would be composer, this is definitely the first book you want to get into VGM, it has a permanent place on my shelf now as I know I'll be referring back to it regularly. After 4 years since I last wrote music seriously I found myself updating my copy of Finale and Garritan Personal Orchestra and even though I am likely never to compose a soundtrack to a video game, it's great to have books like this to keep me inspired and excited about creating music when I can.
I cannot recommend it enough!
Some helpful links:
Game Sound: An Introduction to the History, Theory, and Practice of Video Game Music and Sound Design
For listening Search:
Winifred Phillips' Assassin's Creed Liberation Main Theme
Little Big Planet 2 Soundtrack
Video Game Music CD's -
The Greatest Video Game Music (Amazon Bonus Track Edition)
Greatest Video Game Music Vol.2 (London Philharmonic/ Andrew Skeet) (X5 Music: X5CD118)
Video Games Live