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Getting folk music into cinema

Ian Fyvie 27 May 09 - 10:58 PM
Crow Sister (off with the fairies) 28 May 09 - 02:18 AM
Jim Carroll 28 May 09 - 02:24 AM
VirginiaTam 28 May 09 - 02:50 AM
VirginiaTam 28 May 09 - 02:53 AM
GUEST,Uncle Rumpo 28 May 09 - 03:46 AM
Crow Sister (off with the fairies) 28 May 09 - 03:56 AM
Spleen Cringe 28 May 09 - 04:05 AM
sian, west wales 28 May 09 - 04:23 AM
Neil D 28 May 09 - 04:34 AM
Suegorgeous 28 May 09 - 05:40 AM
Jim Carroll 28 May 09 - 05:46 AM
GUEST,Jim Martin 28 May 09 - 06:21 PM
Rifleman (inactive) 29 May 09 - 11:57 AM
GUEST,Uncle Rumpo 29 May 09 - 12:16 PM
Rifleman (inactive) 29 May 09 - 12:21 PM
Crow Sister (off with the fairies) 29 May 09 - 12:40 PM
Ian Fyvie 31 May 09 - 12:35 PM
bubblyrat 01 Jun 09 - 12:37 PM
Jack Campin 01 Jun 09 - 12:58 PM
Ian Fyvie 03 Jun 09 - 07:57 PM
M.Ted 03 Jun 09 - 10:52 PM
Ian Fyvie 03 Jun 09 - 11:09 PM
katlaughing 03 Jun 09 - 11:24 PM
Rifleman (inactive) 04 Jun 09 - 11:22 AM
M.Ted 05 Jun 09 - 09:23 AM
JedMarum 05 Jun 09 - 09:51 AM
Ref 05 Jun 09 - 11:20 PM
Ian Fyvie 07 Jun 09 - 10:16 PM
GUEST,Neil D 08 Jun 09 - 11:37 AM
Stringsinger 08 Jun 09 - 07:04 PM
GUEST,TJ in San Diego 08 Jun 09 - 07:10 PM
GUEST,Jim Martin 08 Jun 09 - 10:14 PM
Ian Fyvie 08 Jun 09 - 10:43 PM
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Subject: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Ian Fyvie
Date: 27 May 09 - 10:58 PM

What inspired people to get into folk music? For many younger people the film The Wicker Man' is cited.

Given that younger generations are heavily likely to be influenced by popular media, more films rooted in folk tradition would* be good for the music we love.

And we are the experts who could provide the history - and the soundtracks for such projects.

But rather than dream - let's be proactive. There are always Producers looking for new ideas, and the chance to say something valuable in their productions.

Well connected Folkies might routinely come across potential and accomplished film makers - whilst the rest of us could float folk based ideas to TV producers, particularly BBC and CH4 Film makers via tthe usual routes, like writing in.

And of course there must be folkies who could become Producers, particularly if they are adept at getting Arts funding.

Other ideas how we can get more FolkTradition into Cinema and Television.....? Serious contributions plaease!

*I aware that making something too popular can devalue it.

**thanks to Crow Sister and Spleen Cringe comments in the current Folk Arts/Elitist thread for inspiring this new one.


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Crow Sister (off with the fairies)
Date: 28 May 09 - 02:18 AM

Yeah, it's surprising how much the Wicker Man as a cult film, seems to have had a significant effect on young folkish bands. Though it's influence will not be to the liking of some members...

One possible step along a route like this, could be short musical radio plays. Please also see this thread on Folk Opera/Folk Ballads/Folk Musicals


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 28 May 09 - 02:24 AM

Interesting idea Ian - have always believed that folk music has been underused, undersold and misrepresented when it comes to films - notable exceptions of course; John Tams' excellent contribution to the beautiful St Kilda film. 'Ill Fares The Land' springs to mind.
Not to throw cold water on your suggestion - wonder how you feel about moves by IMRO (Irish Musical Rights Organisation) to claim payment from every cinema throughout Ireland for EVERY TIME a piece of music is played in a film.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 28 May 09 - 02:50 AM

Hmmmmm. Interesting proposal. As an aside, I would be interested to know how many people started seeking "folkish" music upon hearing the score for Lord of the Rings.

Back to the proposal, I would worry that directors and producers might corrupt the music, or misapply it. Would we like to hear a pub session as a regular element on The Archers? I am not making a judgement here, just exploring the potential negatives and positives of that association.

I am remembering how my girls (one in particular) avid medieval re-enactors reacted to the film Elisabeth (Kate Blanchett). The costuming was wrong. The ladies in waiting wearing same fabric like a Von Trapp family curtains into clothes rerun.   But what really got my Andie was the playing of Mozart's Requiem at the end of the film. Historically i8ncorrect for the film's time placement.

A peculiar and maybe not perfect example but lends to what I mean. I would hate to see people/corporations cashing in on the music simply for the sake of its obscurity and novelty.

Well,I/m done playing devil's advocat.

If in cinema, telly and radio, why not in video games as well?

I want a Wii virtual pub session.


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 28 May 09 - 02:53 AM

Oh Jim - sorry I cross posted and missed seeing yours.

Personally I think the IMRO is a good thing if the money is ploughed into promotion of the music or pays the artists/writers/composers. Makes the dearer cost of film worthy of that price.


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: GUEST,Uncle Rumpo
Date: 28 May 09 - 03:46 AM

hmm.. and trad folk music soundtracks for hardcore porn movies..

that'd inspire a new generation of adolescent boys
eager to get their hands on small pipes and squeeze boxes....


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Crow Sister (off with the fairies)
Date: 28 May 09 - 03:56 AM

"and trad folk music soundtracks for hardcore porn movies.."

Well they wouldn't have much difficulty finding suitable songs for them I guess.


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Spleen Cringe
Date: 28 May 09 - 04:05 AM

"Tess" was a recent great example of getting folk song into period TV. It worked for me. I think if a production is good enough, the odd bit of ahistoricalism (if that's a word) won't spoil it. I think the key is using folk music (or faux folk music in the case of the Wicker Man) as an integral part of the film rather than just an add on.

Unfortunately the only person I know who worked in TV gave it up for a job with the council...


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: sian, west wales
Date: 28 May 09 - 04:23 AM

As I said in the Folk Activist thread, if you want to accomplish some things, you have to get in on the fora that discuss this. And these are rarely folk-specific.

For instance, in Wales, we have the Welsh Music Foundation which isn't even part of the Arts funding system but a sub-set of the National Assembly's Economic Development ministry. It isn't set up to deal with individual artists either; they work with the recording industry, design, etc - but with artists as they interact with those bits.   As it happens, they're running an event today which I can't get to:

****************************
Scene& Heard :

A Music And Film Panel & Networking Event

Digwyddiad Rhwydweithio A Panel Cerddoriaeth Ffilmiau

Chaired by Rachel Wood of Woodwork Music (http://www.woodworkmusic.co.uk )whose company represents a collection
of new and established independent record labels, artists and music
catalogue owners from around the world for synchronization licensing
to commercials, TV programmes, films and computer games. Rachel's
expertise will help shed light on the rights of artists involved.

The panel also featuresIan Neil ( http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1250117/
): Music Supervisor - with credits including CONTROL(Joy Division
story); JOE STRUMMER-THE FUTURE IS WRITTEN;KIDULTHOOD; ADULTHOOD; OF
TIME AND THE CITY from the highly acclaimed director Terence Davies.
Future releases include BOYS ARE BACK directed by Scott Hicks and the
highly anticipated NOWHERE BOY (John Lennon story) directed by Sam
Taylor Wood.

In a change to the line-up unfortunately due to Mark Thomas' work
commitments -we are thrilled to announce that Christian Henson (
http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0378194/ )will now join the panel
instead. Christian's a composer on the forthcoming new Sienna Miller
movie 'Hippie Hippie Shake' and films like Severance and Wales-based
film 'Little White Lies'. He has also worked with a number of
internationally renowned composers and on Dirty Pretty Things,
Chronicles of Narnia, Hotel Rwanda etc.

Oscar nominated and BAFTA Award winning Director Stephen Frears (
http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0001241/ )whose film credits include
Dangerous Liaisons, Dirty Pretty Things, High Fidelity, Mrs Henderson
Presents and The Queen.

Following the panel Q&A session, a music video from Truckers of Husk
( http://www.myspace.com/truckersofhusk )will provide a case study to
illustrate how a music video project can work and therefore offer a
platform for potentially breaking into the industry. Some of those
involved in the project will share their experience.

Networking drinks and nibbles will follow from approx 7.30pm.
***********************************

Wales has quite a busy film & television industry and my organization, trac, tries to get as many relevant producing companies onto our mailing list, for our Ontrac magazine, as possible. We aren't resourced to do much more than that, but we do regularly get calls from researchers asking for help with repertoire or artists. What they then do with the information doesn't always please us but you can't have everything ...

Wales also has a Society for Composers who we also try to get on the mailing list as above.

Individuals can win the occasional route into this world, but associations and agencies have a better chance of 'getting a seat at the table'. And those tables are just not going to be folk-specific. We have to fight our corner and we have to look like business professionals into the bargain.

sian


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Neil D
Date: 28 May 09 - 04:34 AM

There have been some U.S. movies recently that featured folk and old-timey music. "Oh Brother, Where Art Thou" and "Cold Mountain" were major studio releases and quite popular. I don't know if they attracted more young people to folk but I did hear a ten year old sing "Man of Constant Sorrow" from "Oh Brother" at an Old-timey fiddle contest down in the Ralph Stanley part of SW Virginia.
Another fine film, not a major theatric release, was "Songcatcher". It not only featured folk music it was about it as well. It dealt with ballads from the British Isles being discovered in Appelachia, preserved intact, after more than two centuries of isolation. A work of fiction, but well researched and with some fine singing as well.


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Suegorgeous
Date: 28 May 09 - 05:40 AM

Anyone know how I can get a copy of Ill fares the land? not available on Amazon or Ebay...

Thanks
Sue


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 28 May 09 - 05:46 AM

"Personally I think the IMRO is a good thing"
Virginia,
Don't know how things are in the UK at present, but in Ireland cinema audiences are so small that any additional cost will have the effect of breaking them altogether Here in County Clare we have 1 cinema which shows mainly the blockbusters. Foreighn language films are NEVER shown - and seldom the tiny number of Irish films being made.
As far as sharing the proceeds are concerned, you can bet that, as with the music, it is the blockbusters which will cream off their entitlement first before the smaller productions get a look-in.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: GUEST,Jim Martin
Date: 28 May 09 - 06:21 PM

Jim - also, don't forget the mobile cinema!


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Rifleman (inactive)
Date: 29 May 09 - 11:57 AM

Personally I've never 'got`The Wicker Man, to me it's simply a rather second rate horror film, typical of the Hammer film company


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: GUEST,Uncle Rumpo
Date: 29 May 09 - 12:16 PM

"Personally I've never 'got`The Wicker Man, to me it's simply a rather second rate horror film, typical of the Hammer film company "

Depends if you only ever saw the standard shorter [edited for teenage American Drive-in audiences]origional release version,
or the later restored best available aproximation of a Director's cut...

they are 2 very different cultural experiences.


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Rifleman (inactive)
Date: 29 May 09 - 12:21 PM

I've no idea what version it was, and nor does it matter.

"to me it's simply a rather second rate horror film, typical of the Hammer film company "


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Crow Sister (off with the fairies)
Date: 29 May 09 - 12:40 PM

"they are 2 very different cultural experiences."

Yeah, the directors cut is the only one to see. Wish I could see it at the flix.


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Ian Fyvie
Date: 31 May 09 - 12:35 PM

So, good suggestions already coming in!

Would producers misuse folk? Some will use it tastelessly or inappropriately in a variety of ways.   Wrong music for the historical era is sadly evident in film and tele progs.

Could be because researchers want an easy life or producers have deadlines which drive them to poor musical decisions - like the classic journalist interviewing a sci-fi enthusiast and following a 'little green men' angle for expediency.

So its up to us to enable media people to think of Folk without needing to think too hard by getting it into the media environment in a variety of ways.

How about a debate something like this in a Guardian type newspaper, for example, or articles written for media industry publications informing film/prog makers about the scope of Folk music abd its potential?

Im temped to add to the Irish cinema music royalty point - but a new thread? There's an obvious clash between those in it purely to make money of their (ie the music they OWN) music and those who would be over the moon to have their music in film for nothing, for the recognition.

Ian Fyvie


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: bubblyrat
Date: 01 Jun 09 - 12:37 PM

The Wicker Man ?? Rubbish !! A good laugh,and some nice "flashes" but not much else ,and I can't remember the music at all, just a good actor like Edward Woodward ( The Equaliser !) making a fool of himself. "Far From The Madding Crowd" at least had Dave Swarbrick playing some reasonably authentic and contemporaneous music (as far as I know !). Discuss !


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Jack Campin
Date: 01 Jun 09 - 12:58 PM

A lot of people in the Scots trad business are hoping for spinoffs from Dave Francis & Mairi Campbell's version of "Auld Lang Syne" being featured prominently in "Sex and the City". (I haven't seen it). It makes a different statement having a folk song appear in an out-and-out contemporary context like that.

I thought the cut footage from "The Wicker Man" ended up in landfill under a motorway?


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Ian Fyvie
Date: 03 Jun 09 - 07:57 PM

FIlm critics often disagree with relatively small groups of people who turn something/one into a cult.

All I can say is that I found the Wicker Man film very memorable - whatever the trendy "You killed Mah Buddy, car chase, shoot out, one to one slug-it-out" sycophants thought of it - it remained in my mind from day one of seeing it.

Ian Fyvie

PS Has anyone got something 'folk' started* with a TV/film producer since this thread began?
*objective responses please...


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: M.Ted
Date: 03 Jun 09 - 10:52 PM

There are a lot of people in line to get their music into the movies for the money, and they're all in line ahead of you. If you know some people, and are persistant, in that "if you want me to leave, you have to kill me" sort of way, you'll succeed, otherwise, there's a lot of room here on the park bench...


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Ian Fyvie
Date: 03 Jun 09 - 11:09 PM

Probably right MTed - particularly if you're trying via the open market.

You'll be up against well connected Daddies pushing their young darlings and Record companies pushing all their old hacks they haven't found work for in the charts or obscure radio slots.

Getting to know who's after what before the record companies do is part of the process, or persuading the film maker you produce better songs than the industry hacks - is all helpful too.

Ian Fyvie


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: katlaughing
Date: 03 Jun 09 - 11:24 PM

I liked what they did in Once and also Waking Ned Devine as well as that one with Colm Meany.

VTam - it's not Wii, but here's a fun Virtual Session at BBC.

Also, artists, including musicians, can submit stuff to American Zoetrope which is a virtual studio by Francis Ford Coppola.


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Rifleman (inactive)
Date: 04 Jun 09 - 11:22 AM

""Far From The Madding Crowd" at least had Dave Swarbrick playing some reasonably authentic and contemporaneous music (as far as I know !). Discuss

It did and does. Now this is fine example of the intergartion of folk music(whatever that is) into film.

Adaptations (cinema or television) of any of Thomas Hardy's works invite the use of the music, simply because he integrated the music into his novels.


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: M.Ted
Date: 05 Jun 09 - 09:23 AM

What you, or whosoever, needs to do to get this effort off the ground, is first to put together a catalog of appropriate recordings that you, or the artists, control all the rights to, and that you, or someone who is readily available for endless meetings, is intimately familiar with.

Then you, or that special someone, have to avail yourselves to producers, directors, and writers with suggestions as to what piece of music will fit where in which project.

Then, when it comes down to it, you or whosis will have to deal with things like, "We need a tune for the climax where the hero says "happy birthday" in Esperanto and dies", and things like, "The scene is thirteen seconds, the sound clip is twenty seconds, and Dave Swarbrick is
singing in the place that the hero says "happy birthday".

And you need complete control of the rights so that no one ever says, "We can't release the film because control of the song at the end belonged to some guy who died and left all the recording rights to his pets".


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: JedMarum
Date: 05 Jun 09 - 09:51 AM

I've licensed several pieces of folk for TV and film. My first album was used by a TV series called TRUE LIVES, it played on the Playboy Channel in Europe, UK and Ireland last year. I believe all the tracks they used, however were background, low profile pieces.

I licensed several piece to an independent documentary film, that played theaters and will play on PBS soon. That film was called BLOODY DAWN and some of the music is featured prominently. I am doing the whole sound track for their next film.

These are both small to moderate audiences compared to feature films, but I have an offer to produce the sound track for and am involved with preproduction work on a feature film for next year. This will be a mainstream, major release film if it goes and the working title is Lone Warrior. They want me to base the soundtrack for the film on my 2002 album and its title track, SOUL OF A WANDERER. Here's a clip to an instrumental of that song (with Brian McNeill's fiddle).

In all of these cases I did not seek out the agreements. I ran into two the producers or their colleagues at places I was playing (in Tucson AZ, Kansas City MO and Jackson LA respectively). I have tried contacting film producers I do not know, whose work looks like it would be a good fit for my music, but those contacts have never been fruitful for me.

I think like anything else, you depend upon luck to bring you the opportunites and just try to be ready when it does!


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Ref
Date: 05 Jun 09 - 11:20 PM

You don't "get folk music into films." You get films made for which folk music is the obvious sound track choice. "O, Brother" is a good example, Cold Mountain a little less so (I don't buy Jack White singing through his nose as folk), and Songcatcher as poor (I trashed it in some more detail in the other thread.)


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Ian Fyvie
Date: 07 Jun 09 - 10:16 PM

Surely, Ref, both avenues are valid to try.

IF


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: GUEST,Neil D
Date: 08 Jun 09 - 11:37 AM

I saw a trailer for BLOODY DAWN on Youtube the other day. I'm looking forward to seeing it when it gets to TV. The music sounded great.


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Stringsinger
Date: 08 Jun 09 - 07:04 PM

I'm in favor of getting cinema into folk music. Woody did it with Tom Joad.

Frank


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: GUEST,TJ in San Diego
Date: 08 Jun 09 - 07:10 PM

There is likely a far better chance for folks on the east side of the Atlantic to hear folk music in their films. In the colonies, our movies are now mostly made by accountants whose idea of a "great concept" film is an expanded version of a Saturday Night Live skit, a TV sitcom from 1975 or a movie that has already been made - two or three times and well.

We have had examples recently of "old timey" music in film, such as "Oh, Father, Where Art Thou?" But more typically, anything that sounds like a folk song is either composed for the movie or adapted and arranged with chorus and orchestra. Randy Sparks did some songs for "Advance to the Rear," back in the 1960's. The most remembered is "Today." "How The West Was Won," the big Cinerama film of the 1960's had maudlin versions of some classic folk songs by such "folks" as Debbie Reynolds. "Titanic" had some period music, but I am not qualified to attest to its authenticity. We could use a good deal more folk song in film, if Hollywood wasn't so feckless.


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: GUEST,Jim Martin
Date: 08 Jun 09 - 10:14 PM

Don't forget:

thread.cfm?threadid=117870#2624390


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Subject: RE: Getting folk music into cinema
From: Ian Fyvie
Date: 08 Jun 09 - 10:43 PM

Interesting TJ!

Ian


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