A chat with Reinier Blommaert, Digipost Senior Audio Supervisor, about original lyrics and composition for advertising in Vietnam:
Just to cover the basics, what does doing original compositions mean at a post-production studio like Digipost?
Original composition means a custom, tailor-made piece of music or sound design for a client’s product. This can vary from an atmospheric, ambient soundscape to a full song.
What’s the creative process for original compositions and writing lyrics?
There is a big difference in creating music for (artist) albums or for the corporate market. When creating an artist album, there is total creative freedom. So from improvisation (either on an instrument, or with electronics/computers an idea can emerge.
When composing for a corporate product, you are dealing with a concept and guidelines that need to be followed. A big part of the job is communication: translating the wishes and ideas into a real sounding end result. Another aspect is that the music mostly has a supporting role, so a lot of times the composition needs to be adjusted and timed so that it matches the visuals.
What’s the landscape for this like in Vietnam, is it widely available or not so easy to find?
From my (limited, 8 month) experience, I noticed that there are quite a lot of music composers and producers in Vietnam. Although the top will consist of just a few great ones, doing most of the jobs.
How has this aspect of the audio department, both at Digipost and generally in post-production, evolved recently due to technology, trends or demands from clients?
Music composition and production in general, has undergone a great change since the rise of computers and electronic instruments. In the 80’s the instruments themselves digitalized. In the 90’s software instruments were created: virtual instruments that can be used within the digital audio software. Currently it is possible to do a full composition and music production using just a laptop and a MIDI keyboard or controller to play on the software instruments.
What’s the most important thing to keep in mind while doing original compositions/lyrics for a project?
Realizing that the composition and/or lyrics serves a purpose, namely supporting and enhancing the total product, usually an audiovisual one. So different from audio only, because the crowd or consumer will have both visual and audio senses triggered.