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To actors or actoresses, writers and musicians here

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dk

Apr-30-2017 8:01 PM

As a quasi musician who has written and recorded original material, I listen to music on different levels that non musicians may not observe. I listen for production, overdubs, missed beats, time meter changes and such while still trying to just enjoy it for what it is- but I can't help myself. As a basic example, I can listen to Bowie's Rebel Rebel and enjoy it but listen for how the instrumentation is mixed and such wondering what type of guitar and pick up was used.

Do actors and writers look at professional works in their own vein that way- and does it add to or detract from enjoyment?

19 Responses to To actors or actoresses, writers and musicians here

HappyXeno

Apr-30-2017 8:19 PM

Being a writer is really a result of reading, so the more you read the more room you'll have to critique. I find that many books published today (mainly YA fiction) all have a similar yawny prose that I vow to stay away from in my own work. Sometimes my observations add to the experience, sometimes they detract from it. I'm really picky as to what I allow to inspire me. 

What's the story, MUTHUR?

dk

Apr-30-2017 8:24 PM

HappyXeno So if you did not write, you might view things differently? I know it is a loaded question.

For instance, I used to see non musicians air guitar music I thought was lame and notice their fretting fingers were not even close to accurate lol!

HappyXeno

Apr-30-2017 8:29 PM

Yeah, I think so. If I wasn't a writer I probably wouldn't have the same passion for words/grammar/style so I wouldn't look out for it nearly as much while reading. 

What's the story, MUTHUR?

dk

Apr-30-2017 9:16 PM

Even with movies, I nit pick. I suppose that is when it comes down to the glue that is writing and acting to really sell it.

I Raptus

Apr-30-2017 10:48 PM

@dk yes i always listen to the music of a movie when i watch. A good score or soundtrack can make such a difference.

One of the most satisfying things Ive been apart of was writing, recording and releasing an EP of original music. Once recorded we had professional artwork done with a theme in mind for our music. It was such a great experience. Very rewarding as Im sure dk can attest to!!

It would be even more rewarding writing a song with a movie in mind for a soundtrack.   

dk

Apr-30-2017 10:59 PM

IRaptus Movie scores are one of those things I consciously pay attention to some times. The 10 minute AC video was one. I tried to imagine the scene with no music or score and it would not have been as intense without it. On the other hand, some times no music heightens tensions too.

I agree that it is satisfying creating music being involved from mental conception to actual fruition. I have to admit though.....By the time I have written a song, done drum tracks, got my vox friend on board, did the tracks and mixed.....by the time I have a cd to pop into someone's player, I am pretty sick and tired of the song and don't want to hear it again for another few weeks!

I love hearing other music- sometimes I hear instrumentation like an electric piano that helps make things sound fuller for a chorus or  noticing vocal layers- I love picking that stuff apart!

Jim Pills

May-01-2017 12:25 AM

@dk I too pay attention to music scores in Movies and TV programs. I agree that done right music or absence of music contributes  greatly to the movie.

I think I have a pretty good ear for music I've found that novelty in world music in hearing a phrase from an instrument I've never seen or heard of before then trying work out what it is by the noise it makes. Such as is it stringed, wind or drummed.. I surprise myself sometimes by picking the type of instrument more often than not. Without using web browsers.

There are some very strange instruments out there! Some of the noises they make you'd be hard pressed to pick what instrument creates the noise! Some that I've gotten wrong I'll check then puzzle over how they created the noise, fascinating stuff.

Unfortunately A.C. almost certainly won't have engineer or the paradise humanoid music or the instruments but damn I'd be intrigued to find out what they'd be or sound like!

dk

May-01-2017 12:39 AM

Jim Pills I have my favorites. but I enjoy music in general. I was listening to an instrumental band called Skeletonbreath- a trio. I heard some really full sounds and repeated them and realized there was an electric organ droning during parts. Other with other bands times I notice overdubs of lead guitar or vocal passages that couldn't possibly be pulled of live, but you have to really listen and pay attention- I love that kind of stuff that casual listeners might not catch. I also love hearing the occasional theremin.

I also appreciate sound effects like people holding things and making appropriate sounds to the movie like boots sloshing through mud and such.  

Jim Pills

May-01-2017 1:37 AM

@dk Ahh the true music lover... Well I have my favorites too and like all sorts of music as well. I may not go to the depths of understanding that you go to, my playing ability being bloody awful but I have a great appreciation for the skills of the musicians to create fantastic music.

I thoroughly love the way sound foley artists have the average cinema goer fooled too. It's actually very funny to think that what's seen onscreen in sound effects isn't what you're actually hearing. You could at one point buy CD's full of special effects created by these artists. Clever stuff especially the way the sounds are created.

dk

May-01-2017 1:58 AM

I saw a documentary a long time ago and part of it was movie sound effects. It was fascinating to see what sounds people made to match what was on screen in real time. They often used very crude house hold items to achieve sounds incongruent what was on screen. Creature noises were interesting too- multitracked and sped up/slowed down combinations of different animal voicings. I could get lost watching stuff like that!

dk

May-01-2017 2:05 AM

Here is a very basic idea for scores and sound and impact on movies-

Try to imagine how much impact the classic shower scene from Psycho would have had without the score.

Jim Pills

May-01-2017 2:40 AM

Or how about the scene from 2001: A Space Odyssey of the monolith scenes without the eerie vocal track!

But both with music were enough to send a shiver through the body. 

Truly wonderful stuff. 

LadyStardust

May-01-2017 8:28 AM

As a writer, I pay special attention to the plot and how well or badly the story was conceived not only to entertain, but to make sense. I hate it when a lazy writer comes up with a very inappropriate Deus Ex Machina just because they couldn't find a consistent way out of the situation they created in the first place. So, this sort of thing and the characters, of course. Nobody wants a mere puppet in the place of a real person, even if it is just a movie. Sometimes it is kind of distracting, and I find myself overthinking, not watching.

As a translator, I find it amazing how cultural differences are part of the language one speaks - I never watch dubbed movies, only subtitled ones. So, I was delighted to see David learning ancient languages in the search of their root, as well as I got astonished to see the amount of people who didn't understand how David was able to speak and read the Engineers' language, since Holloway and Shaw's thesis considered that they were responsible for our creation and, possibly, learning, and their language would be in the very origin of, say, Sumerian or Aramaic.

Starlogger

May-01-2017 12:01 PM

I believe that any professional artist has a "critical" eye and a "just for enjoyment" eye (or ear, as the case may be). At least I do, and every other musician I know does. Having also done some acting, I also find the same thing applies. There are movies and music I can just watch or listen to and simply ENJOY, without paying attention to the details, at times. If I WANTED to be critical and overanalytic, it would ruin the art for me. That's part of what art is: imperfection that transcends itself.

JazzHands

May-01-2017 1:44 PM

I would not call myself an actor, but I've done a bunch of extra work on The Walking Dead and a handful of movies. I can say that having had those experiences on set-- seeing exactly what goes on in front of as well as behind the camera, has certainly impacted my enjoyment of movies and tv shows. I find myself constantly being pulled out of the story because I'm watching the extras, or thinking about how the scene is set, or spotting mistakes in continuity. It kinda sucks.

Starlogger

May-01-2017 2:04 PM

@jazzhands that gets better over time. You learn how to switch it on and switch it off, IF the material is at a "good enough" threshold (for your own taste/knowledge).

dk

May-01-2017 2:12 PM

JazzHands I know what you mean. My dad worked security for a movie in his police days in the city I live in back in the late 70s. He told me how sets were made and to note that most shows don't show ceilings. It hadn't occurred to me but saw he was right. It was just a fun thing to realize and watch for. I agree with Starlogger to that it is possible to switch it off- sometimes looking and listening for things can be art of the fun.

JazzHands

May-01-2017 2:24 PM

I hope y'all are both right! Sometimes I do enjoy it, like when I actively want to analyze how something was done. But more often than not it's just plain distracting. 

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