I CAN HELP YOU BRING YOUR FILM TO LIFE WITH THE POWERFUL, TANGIBLE AND VISCERAL EFFECT OF MUSIC. WITH A WEALTH OF SCORING EXPERIENCE, I AM BOTH SENSITIVE TO THE LIMITS OF CONVENTION YET KEEN TO PUSH THEM, WORKING WITH YOU TO CREATE SOMETHING NEW, FRESH AND DIFFERENT.
John has scored several short films and trailers. He has composed for films submitted to major international festivals and has credits to his name on IMBd for Martin Friar's First Kiss (Red Spire Films) and The Sex Lives of Eels (directed by Silas Elliott and Luke Rollason), which made the official selection for the Vault Film Festival 2017.
John offers uniquely comprehensive experience: his genre familiarity spans classical, jazz, pop, rock and electronic; he is an advanced pianist, keyboard-synth player and violinist; he has benefitted from extensive film scoring experience in high-level teams at the University of Oxford where he also had world-class composition tutorials; he is proficient at music tech; he is a songwriter in a jazz-electronic band; and he has been passionately composing, arranging and orchestrating all his life with a solid grasp of theory — especially harmony — and a gifted ear.
Unsurprisingly John can provide an end-to-end service: envisaging initial musical ideas and sound-worlds, cue-spotting, composition, arrangement, orchestration, performing, recording, and mixing. In all stages he prioritises close collaboration with the director to ensure their vision is achieved. Tailored demos available on request.
The divide between composing and arranging is a grey area; the choices of the combination of instruments, what role they play at any one time, of how to voice chords and distribute melodies and accompaniments, and how these textural decisions express a variety of feelings, are almost as important as the notes themselves. The great Bernard Herrmann said: "To orchestrate is like a thumbprint. I can't understand having someone else do it. It would be like someone putting colour to your paintings." Furthermore arranging exists on a spectrum where, at its most extreme, only some elements of the original music are retained. If you would like John to arrange existing music for a different or particular ensemble, to put a new spin on it, or even to completely change its style, it would be his pleasure to help out.
Thanks to his accomplished aural skills, John is able to transcribe virtually anything you might want to throw at him! Perhaps there is a piece for which the sheet music is not commercially available, or you heard a killing guitar solo that you want to learn, or you need a professional backing track in a different key without warped audio; with John your request is in safe hands.
As a freelance composer for film production company Free Bird Film and for top London music production company A-Mnemonic Music Productions, John is versed in the art of advertising music and sonic branding. He is developing a knack for capturing the essence of a product in audio form, and his imaginative compositions can accurately locate the specific and nuanced tone of a commercial, skilfully under-pinning the emotional contours of its narrative.
Another of John's enthusiasms is computer and video game music. Many of the same principles of film scoring apply: other than the fact that they are both motion-picture, games, too, require a soundtrack and themes to embody certain atmospheres and moods, to navigate a story, or to highlight characters and locations. Having played numerous of them growing up, admiring in particular Stuart Chatwood's fusion of rock, Middle-Eastern and Indian elements in his music for The Prince of Persia: the Sands of Time, he is well-acquainted with the language of this medium.
John takes delight in writing original music of all kinds, especially programmatic, so if you would like to commission a piece or song for some occasion, group or society, or for anything else, he would be very interested in hearing from you.
John heavily values learning from the workflows and creative processes of industry professionals, and making connections in the field. He is enthusiastic, courteous and able to facilitate your work in a number of ways: he is fluent in a number of DAWs, in notation programs Finale and Sibelius, tech-savvy, efficient, pro-active, a fast learner, and deals well with clients, studio engineers and agents thanks to good interpersonal skills.
Do you have a wedding or party coming up? Do you need a dep for a gig because someone's pulled out at the last minute? Do you need a good accompanist for an audition or performance? Read about John's experience on the "instrumentalist" page.