Monday, July 14, 2008

On Soundtracks and Coffee.

Brett Battles totally got me into writing to soundtracks. I have a long relationship with soundtracks: from the time I first started tracking my expenses to when composed movie music gave way to using popular songs a few years back, I would go to movies and write the composer on my movie ticket.

It was true: this helped me in gigs and teaching students, because they often want to hear (or play) a certain movie's music.

Many of the composers I knew by sound: movie composers tend to have a trademark, easily identifiable sound. And they have a bit of a habit of recycling bits. (Lately, I've heard old soundtracks applied to new movies; I HATE this.)

Nowadays, I can't even figure out who composed the music for a movie from the credits, especially if it's just pop songs with only a few minutes of original composition. Have you noticed? They often don't list the composers; they list "music producers," I think they're called.

Are they composers, too? I don't know: the names are unfamiliar to me.

I'm starting to organizing certain "writing" music by mood. This is handy when I need to slip into a certain mood "instantly" when I sit down to write. I can write to movie music because it's a bit repetitive; it's not composed for foreground consumption. And it's composed to evoke mood. So I don't go into analytical mode, and I don't "overly" listen to it as I do any other music.

I've decided to drink coffee. One, it helps me focus and write. Two, I read this article and several like it.  I suspect I have a high likelihood of developing Parkinson's. My mother has it, and I've inherited Every. Single. One. of her health issues (biologically, she's my grandmother). Hers developed late, so late that by the time it would become a problem, she'd be 120 or so. I wonder if it's due to the smoking and coffee like the article suggests, LOL.

Couldn't hurt. I fear Parkinson's. Sometimes I... drop things and my hands go sorta weird. I'm sure this happens to everyone, but still I fear Parkinson's.

I'll probably change my mind, but hey, maybe I'll get lots of writing done beforehand.

Do you drink coffee? Tea? Listen to soundtracks? Have a favorite soundtrack?

28 bonus scribbles:

Zoe Winters 7/14/2008 05:50:00 PM  

I bet that's why I'm such a soundtrack nut. Most of my CDs are soundtracks. I don't drink coffee much, but sometimes I drink tea.

Melanie Avila 7/14/2008 06:02:00 PM  

I do love me some good soundtracks. That's interesting about how they're put together to evoke a certain mood. It makes sense, and why not use that to your advantage.

I like coffee but only drink one cup in the morning. Im' actively searching for other vices. :)

Edie 7/14/2008 07:16:00 PM  

I'm a tea drinker, though once in awhile I'll drink coffee. I like writing in silence, but I'm going to start listening to Vivaldi's The Four Seasons while writing. I love it for my self-hypnotism tape.

My husband has been dropping stuff lately, but he doesn't seem worried. I try not to worry too. Natasha, I hope it turns out to be nothing.

Robin 7/14/2008 07:19:00 PM  

I get totally distracted by music, but I don't mind people talking! I guess I was meant to write at Starbucks. Coffee would be readily available there!

Eric Mayer,  7/14/2008 08:25:00 PM  

I can't write and listen to anything.

I drink coffee. I used to drink tea but when Mary and I got married she convinced me to change to coffee which she prefers. She's British. Go figure.

Christa M. Miller 7/14/2008 08:35:00 PM  

I like movie soundtracks but I think it's even more fun to make my own!

I'm a tea drinker, but when I go to coffee shops (rare treat), I drink a cup of chai. I have never developed a taste for coffee.

BookInTheOven 7/14/2008 09:26:00 PM  

I never thought about writing to a sound track, but now that you talk about it, I think that sounds like a fabulous idea! I'm going to try it tonight.

I *absolutely* LOVE coffee. Espresso--Lattes--Cappuccinos--anything with a strong taste. I get a daily Starbucks triple venti to help me get started at the day job. Sometimes I like it as a nice writing buddy too, but I don't "need" it to write.

Jes 7/15/2008 03:03:00 AM  

Hey you! It's amazing how many blogs I find when I can't sleep, lol.

StarvingWriteNow 7/15/2008 06:35:00 AM  

coffee is my manna from heaven. I love it.

Favorite soundtracks: The Piano, Pride & Prejudice, Last Temptation of Christ, Braveheart...

Dube 7/15/2008 11:20:00 AM  

I write to music a lot too. I've based entire scripts or novel ideas on one song that sparked my imagination.

I don't like coffee, but I am addicted to Dr Pepper. It helps my writing too. I think it's partially because of the caffeine. :)

colbymarshall 7/15/2008 12:24:00 PM  

Coffee and tea, but more tea. Coffee fills me up too much!

Melanie Avila 7/15/2008 01:58:00 PM  

Robin, I'm the opposite. I can deal with music but talking distracts me. Even the tv.

Leigh Russell 7/15/2008 03:59:00 PM  

Interesting that you use music to evoke a certain mood. What a good idea. But I'm afraid I find music too distracting. I don't know why. I find it more difficult to filter out than people talking on the radio! Strange, but true.

I drink gallons of coffee... glad to know it might possibly have some benefit, although it's no doubt outweighed by the damage it causes. I drink gallons of tea too. (And yes - I do waste half my life running to the loo.)

spyscribbler 7/15/2008 08:44:00 PM  

Zoe, I'm a big tea drinker. I love white tea. One of my first tapes was a soundtrack. (They still had records!) It was for Out of Africa. Love that music.

spyscribbler 7/15/2008 08:45:00 PM  

Totally, Melanie! And they're meant for the background. They're so repetitive, that I can not think of them, usually.

spyscribbler 7/15/2008 08:46:00 PM  

Edie, my coffee vow only lasted a day. Well, it's a start. I'm sure it's nothing, btw. It's just, you know. Random. It plays into a musician's fears of losing her hands, that's all. :-)

spyscribbler 7/15/2008 08:47:00 PM  

Robin, I get totally distracted by people talking! I do love writing at cafes. They have music, too, but I can never hear it.

spyscribbler 7/15/2008 08:49:00 PM  

Eric, that seems wrong! Lately, the silence in my house has become oppressive. The silence is just so loud. There's no one here, and I never watch TV, so unless I'm teaching, it's quiet. All the time.

It got to the point where I just can't take it anymore, LOL.

spyscribbler 7/15/2008 08:50:00 PM  

Christa, that's cool, making your own! I prefer the composed music rather than the... are they called anthologies? I don't think so, LOL. Compilations? I don't know the word!

Ohmigosh, CHAI! I used to drink Chai all the time! I love Chai!

spyscribbler 7/15/2008 08:52:00 PM  

Bookintheoven, that's awesome! I'm not a huge coffee fan, but I do love cold-pressed coffee. There's something so smooth about it, and it doesn't seem to bother me like other coffee.

spyscribbler 7/15/2008 08:52:00 PM  

LOL, Jes, isn't that great?

spyscribbler 7/15/2008 08:52:00 PM  

Bernita, where can I sign up for lessons?

spyscribbler 7/15/2008 08:53:00 PM  

Writenow, Braveheart is a movie I always meant to see but never did. I was auditioning its soundtrack last week, but I opted for Eastern Promises instead.

spyscribbler 7/15/2008 08:54:00 PM  

Dube, the soundtrack to Eastern Promises makes me want to write a big, 200K novel!

I love how inspiration strikes!

spyscribbler 7/15/2008 08:55:00 PM  

Colby, that's interesting that you say that! I realized, the other day, that when I was drinking coffee, I kept forgetting to eat.

But that might be a good thing...

spyscribbler 7/15/2008 08:55:00 PM  

Yeah, Melanie, I'm like you. Although music with words distracts me, too.

spyscribbler 7/15/2008 08:57:00 PM  

Leigh, I go to the bathroom constantly, too! I drink a lot of tea. I'm trying to pick up the coffee habit. I consider it an OTC drug for ADD, LOL.