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As the executive producer and music supervisor at Premier Music Group, Winslow Bright says every day is a little different. “In the span of a day, we could be kicking off a music search for a new client, having calls with a creative team, meeting with a director about an upcoming job, starting demos for original music for a project, calling composers. It’s a huge range, and it keeps everything fresh and fun,” says Bright, who in January gave a keynote speech at SyncSummit on the future of licensing.
“With this job, there are a lot of people involved in the process. So in some ways it’s been easier with COVID-19, because everyone is at home and response times are noticeably much faster. Maybe on the other side of the pandemic, things will continue moving at a quicker pace,” she says. “In 2020, I also was often working with songs from more well-known talent, I think because people are looking for comfort, nostalgia and stability in this uncomfortable and unstable time. But hopefully 2021 will see more new music from up-and-coming talent.”
Bright says a good music supervisor serves as an “intermediary between music and feeling,” and she works to identify the missing link between the two for clients. “Oftentimes, creative directors bring us a brief and want to tell a story that evolves through different settings, like an arctic tundra, the Sahara, outer space—well, what does that sound like? What do those visual descriptions tell us about music?”
In music supervision, projects often entail a scavenger hunt for music, so research skills are a must, Bright says. “You can be asked to find who owned the publishing on something, and you don’t have the option of, ‘I can’t find it.’ You have to find it,” she says. “I was once helping [music supervisor] Randall Poster find a musician in the Netherlands that Wes Anderson wanted for The Grand Budapest Hotel, which was difficult. But there was no other option. Being able to research, being confident in reaching out to people––those are important skills to finding the info that you need.”