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19 September 2014
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Make Some Music

Ty UnwinTy Unwin

Ty Unwin is a young composer whose credits include the music for two natural history documentaries set in Africa, Born to be Wild and Vets in the Wild.

Later credits include the 2000-2001 epic series Space, fronted by actor Sam Neill, and the drama-documentaries Genghis Khan, Pompeii: The Last Day and Super Volcano.

Here he offers six golden rules for composing music for television.


When starting out never turn down a job

Never forget, people will pay you money for doing what you love doing.


Don't get precious

The relationship with directors and producers is key... Musically you can ruin a piece of music, but if it works better with the picture you have to go with it.


Accept cheap gigs when starting out...

...and don't expect to be able to afford real musicians.


Put any money you make into gear

If you have the kit to be able to put bells and whistles on your pitch it makes so much difference.


Clarify if you have a pitch or commission

There are horror stories out there...


Create your own recognisable voice

To help you, you'll need a box of tricks, whether it be your harmonic language, your use of arrangements or your template of sounds.

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