Creating custom original music for visual media.
“But I can just use that stock music library from the interwebs...”
Sure, there’s plenty of situations where this works great (i.e., Reality Television). However, if you long for the specifics such as “I’m looking for the colour blue, on a Saturday, 2006, March” while also conveying emotional support, this is where custom music is a perfect match for your production.
Music that is precisely tailored for the moment compared to stock music “needle-drop” compromise.
“You’re more expensive than my friend’s kid who uses Garageband”
Synthesizer Sound Design
Sometimes called “Additional Programming”, these are bespoke sounds custom created for use within a Composer’s score instead of common “off the shelf” sounds that everyone has access to.
The individual modules are sourced from all over the world – ranging from established synthesizer companies to one-man operations that design and build each by hand. The sonic possibilities of the system are endless, such as a building something from a huge trunk of Lego, and offers a bespoke sonic edge to a composer’s sound.
A Technical Wingman is basically “Scotty” in Star Trek. Tasked with keeping the ship operational when the pressure is on! Depending on the scope of the production, it could be any number of things...
Integrating/deploying/maintaining studio systems at the hardware and software level
- Preparing pre-records and materials for the score record and eventual mix
- preparing sessions for an orchestrator
- preparing parts if no copyist is involved
- Take Notes
- Verifying any note inconsistencies in Orchestration vs. Mockup
- another ear in the room to listen out for tuning, intonation and stage noises
Providing technical consulting services for Composers as well as meeting up with emerging composers to ‘talk shop’ about the business and how to dive in!
Neil is also involved with:
Screen Composers Guild of Canada
- Member: 2005 to Present
- Mentorship Program: Mentor, 2015 to Present
- Seminar Host: Synthesis for Film & Television
- Board of Directors: 2016 to 2018
- Music Applied to Stage, Screen and Interactive Visual Environments (MASSIVE) Program Advisory Committee Member
Fanshawe College Music Industry Arts
- Program Advisory Committee: Member
- Guest Lecturer: 2006, 2010, 2011, 2015 to Present
Centennial College Story Arts Centre - Part-Time Faculty
- Digital Audio Music Production with Pro Tools (Fall 2016)
- Digital Audio Music Production with Pro Tools (Fall 2017)
- Digital Audio Music Production with Pro Tools (Winter 2018, 2020)
- MIDI, Programming and Synthesis (Winter and Fall 2018, Winter 2020)
Canadian Film Centre
- Slaight Music Residency: Technical Round Table Panelist 2013 to Present
Ontario Association of Broadcasters
- OAB Career Day 2017, 2018, 2020
“Career Day provides a forum for soon-to-be
graduating broadcasting students to meet with professionals in their field to talk candidly and ask questions in a unique and casual setting. This allows them a level of access to people they would not normally have. The ever popular round-table discussions features hosts from all areas of broadcasting"
Harris Institute for the Arts
- Guest Lecturer for MIDI Students, Fall Term 2016 and 2017
- Guest Lecturer for MIDI Students, Winter Term 2017
Toronto Animation Arts Festival International
- Panelist on "Music Underscore" 2013
University of Toronto Faculty of Music
- Guest Lecturer for MUS3618 Studio Orchestration and Arranging (2021)
St. Maximilian Kolbe Catholic High School
- Guest Speaker for the entire Grade 10 and 11 student body, discussing a career path as a freelancer (2014)
US Department of Veteran Affairs
Provided general music production and related computer technology one-
on-one training to a US veteran residing in Toronto (2005)