Film Music 101 - Robert Kraft - Pharmacy Music

Listen while reading!

This fall, I have been proposed to produce the music for a very special movie: a commercial to be played in the waiting room of a pharmacy. I thought "Why not?" I would surely learn new things and improve my Logic Studio skills.

Coincidence, on October 26th, when I was drafting the music, Robert Kraft was invited at Harvard. Robert Kraft is the President of Fox Music Inc.

He gave me interesting comments on Dérives. But he was even more helpful on my pharmaceutical work in progress:

  • Be more repetitive. The audience likes repetition. Don't waste all your ideas in a short amount of time. And the audience expects the theme to come back.
    Indeed, my first version was an accumulation of musical loops, very varied, because I was afraid of being too repetitive!
  • It's good to use a clear structure. For instance, a 4 or 8-bar looping structure.
    As you can hear, the new version is very much 4-bar oriented. I synchronized the music with the picture through slight tempo changes throughout the piece.
  • Why this minor harmony here? Is something getting suddenly emotional?
    I must admit there were too many minor chords in my first draft. Every change of harmony must fit the image!
  • Write footballs. When there's a dialogue, write footballs. Do you know footballs?
    Footballs: whole notes.

Robert Kraft has been responsible for each note of music in all the following films! From choosing the composers to validating the final soundtracks.


Mariam Nazarian, pianist, singer, and very active Graduate student in Performance Practice, convinced the Music Department and the Office for the Arts to organize this "Film Music 101" master class. The other composers who shared their work were Elizabeth Lim, Edgar Barroso, and Russ Gershon.

Feel free to download the music on your iPod, and to listen to it next time you go to the pharmacy! And if you want to know more about the robots that prepare your medication, check out Script Pro web site.

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