A Guide to Scoring Films for Those Who Have Never Scored Anything in Their Lives

Like...not even a touchdown, a free throw, or free tickets to your local theater's production of "Rent."

Let's take a poll. Raise your hand if you know more about cameras than MIDI controllers. Raise your hand if you've never touched a MIDI controller. Raise your hand if you don't know what a MIDI controller is. Finally, raise your hand if you want to learn more about film composing. For those who raised your hands (weirdly and in real life) at least once during my super scientific poll, I've got a resource for you that is going to get you nice and acquainted with the wonderful world of film scoring.

Filmmaker Luke Neumann has put together an exhaustive video series that breaks down a ton of different concepts and techniques you'll need to know in order to score your films and videos, from the essential equipment you'll need when starting out to honing your musical skills—even if you're a ridiculously unskilled musician. There's over an hour's worth of content in the playlist below, so grab some pepperoni sticks and a bottle of rosé like a real gentlehuman and prepare to get learnt.

Video is no longer available: www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vue3kBaBw5A&list=PL5IvU241GPN2DgRI51AfKs2D3b9xLVDJq

This is a message to those who skimmed. I understand—an hour is a long time to sit and watch instructional videos, especially when you've got work in the morning and, you know, there's new BoJack. However, if you really want to learn the basics (and the not very basics) of composing and scoring, Newmann really makes it simple and fun and entertaining. Here's a quick summary of what he covers in each video:

  • 5 Things You Need to Start Scoring Your Videos: What equipment should you get when you start out? Do you need a piano? A guitar? A friggin' 18th-century German pipe organ? What about software? Samples? Services and tools? Newmann gives you a quick list of essentials (that aren't super inexpensive).
  • An Introduction to Pro Tools (for Video Editors): Guess what. It's an intro to Pro Tools. Yep! But it's more than that. Newmann, like a damn champion, literally walks you through the process as though you're opening up the program for the first time, which, I assume, many of you would be, explaining all of the tools and settings and workspace.
  • Tips and Tricks for EastWest PLAY: Just like with Pro Tools, Newmann walks you through the process of using the EastWest PLAY 6 software, from how to use samples to how to navigate the dashboard.
  • Become a Musical Genius in 10 Minutes:  From "absolute beginner" to "musical genius"...that's what this video's all about. And no, you're not going to transform from Hamfist Hank to friggin' Ludwig van, okay, but you're going to learn a pretty clever way to make music without knowing a whole lot about making music.
  • Sound like Hans Zimmer for $300: Want more samples? Newmann suggests a relatively inexpensive second purchase (considering you already have EastWest samples) that will help you sound like Hans Zimmer himself—mostly because these samples were made by Hans Zimmer himself.

This is a message to those who have made it to the other side. Hello, I'm happy to see you. That was certainly a long journey but a journey worth taking, yeah? If you're still craving more, you are in luck, my friend, because Neumann plans to continue adding more meaty goodness to his series in the future. So, sit tight and keep an eye out for the next one!     

Your Comment


I've watched all the videos and there's very nice info. He makes a good case of start composing right away, just by ear.

September 17, 2018 at 6:23AM, Edited September 17, 6:23AM

Álex Montoya

Orchestral is mispronounced.
The accent should be on the second syllable.
Get your act together!

September 23, 2018 at 10:09AM, Edited September 23, 10:09AM

Lee Albright
Owner-Albright Films

Any reason why the videos aren't there anymore ?

October 3, 2018 at 9:21PM, Edited October 3, 9:21PM

Joe Francis
Owner - Ultraviolet Films

One of the films that I admire is a film called Laskar Pelangi which was made in Indonesia on the island of Belitung

May 17, 2021 at 2:34AM

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