25
April 2008
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Cue of the Week: “The Mirror”

Here’s a moody and somber piano cue from Home Room‘s score. The hollow-sounding sustained tone in the background wasn’t produced electronically as you might expect, but by percussion guru M.B. Gordy’s swinging a flexible plastic tube overhead in a circle! The result produce a more organic sound than an analog synthesizer-style preset, though it required a special effort to mic.

(Click on the play button to stream, or the cue title to download.)

The Mirror
 

04
April 2008
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2 Comments
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Cue of the Week: “Going Home, Part 2”

Here’s something in a more traditional lyrical movie-music vein, one of two cues for oboe and string orchestra towards the end of Home Room. The multi-talented (and multi-instrumental) Chris Bleth lends his oboe skills to this performance.

(Click on the play button to stream, or the cue title to download.)

Going Home, Part 2

28
March 2008
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Cue of the Week: “Tibetan Jam”

This short cue is a genre-blending mixture of meditative Far Eastern percussion and contemporary beats. I’m not winning any points for ethnomusicological authenticity here, but this was fun to write. The cue began its life as a sort of proof-of-concept, but I like the idea and am tempted to extend it into a longer piece.

(Click on the play button to stream, or the cue title to download.)

Tibetan Jam

14
March 2008
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Cue of the Week: “Two Girls”

From the the film Home Room, a moody piece accompanying a dissolve between two film’s two protagonists (played by Erika Christensen and Busy Phillips, respectively) which highlights the parallels between them. Trying to echo the visuals, I composed the music so that one melodic statement played over each character’s moment in front of the camera.

(Click on the play button to stream, or the cue title to download.)

Two Girls
 

07
March 2008
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1 Comment
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Cues of the Week: Ancient victory double feature

Continuing last week’s theme of accomplishment-oriented music, this week I’m presenting two more victory cues from Empire Earth 2. (Since they’re both short, I figured I’d make this week’s post a double-feature.) Both accompany victory conditions met while playing various ancient empires in the Far East and Mediterranean. Sharp-eared listeners will recognize the second cue as the companion piece to “Sands of Arabia”, which can be heard on my game music page.

Music performances once again courtesy of the Budapest Film Orchestra.

(Click on the play button to stream, or the cue title to download.)

Macedonian Victory
 

Arabian Victory
 

07
March 2008
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“The Alleged Adventures of Blenderman” to be performed in Sydney

Michael’s stage mini-musical, The Alleged Adventures of Blenderman will be produced as part of the Short, Sweet, and Song ten-minute musical festival in Sydney, Australia on March 26. Michael is the author of the show’s music, book, and lyrics. Tickets can be purchased through Ticketmaster Australia.

Blenderman co-won the first place prize in the Actoberfest Ten Minute Play festival in North Hollywood in 2007, and is also slated to be performed as part of a showcase of mini-musicals in the Los Angeles Festival of New American Musicals later this spring.

29
February 2008
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Cue of the Week: “Final Victory”

It’s a bit of a joke to name a cue “final victory”, given that everything from computer games to wildlife documentaries invariably features a piece of music by that name. This particular final victory comes from Empire Earth II; it opens with the themes for the American region (or “faction”, to use contemporary parlance) which is combined contrapuntally with the game’s overall central theme, connecting the particular wrapped-up mission with a sense of the game as a whole.

I’m a big fan of the dramatic pause as a musical technique, and not just because the wind players inevitably complain if you don’t get them a chance to breathe. In endings like this one, I imagine a hypothetical narrator speaking a final word of a monologue in the gap left in the music – even though in this case there’s no actual voice-over.

(Click on the play button to stream, or the cue title to download.)

Final Victory
 

Morituri Te Salutant // Michael Gordon Shapiro - Highlights
  1. Morituri Te Salutant // Michael Gordon Shapiro - Highlights
  2. Emerald, Texas // Highlights
  3. Mythic Battle // Highlights
  4. The Yard Sale // Michael Gordon Shapiro - Highlights
  5. Investigations // Highlights
  6. Home Room // Highlights
  7. Sands of Arabia // Highlights
  8. Spider Cult // Highlights
  9. Poker Night // Highlights