Spitfire Westworld - Winner Announced!

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jacobthestupendous

not that stupendous
Congrats, David! I had intended to do an 8-bit sounding thing when the contest was getting started, and you beat me to the punch, so I went a different direction. Yours came out much better than mine would have anyway, and I'm genuinely happy that you won!

I read through the first 200 or so replies to this forum so forgive me if this got addressed after I gave up trudging through, but I wanted to respond to a couple of themes I'm seeing in the objections.

Regarding David's entry "breaking the rules," the official rules only mention modifying "the clip", but I'm 90% sure that I read or saw somewhere Paul Thomson saying that messing with the audio was fair game as long as the picture remained unmolested. Based on that, I muted out the other F-bomb so that my kids could watch my submission. Does anyone else remember this?

Regarding the argument that this was a scoring contest and no real legit director would choose this, that argument is silly because real directors DID choose this. Your best guesses about the expectations and preferences of real directors are irrelevant, because real directors made their actual choice.
 

Dr.Quest

Senior Member
Congrats, David! I had intended to do an 8-bit sounding thing when the contest was getting started, and you beat me to the punch, so I went a different direction. Yours came out much better than mine would have anyway, and I'm genuinely happy that you won!

I read through the first 200 or so replies to this forum so forgive me if this got addressed after I gave up trudging through, but I wanted to respond to a couple of themes I'm seeing in the objections.

Regarding David's entry "breaking the rules," the official rules only mention modifying "the clip", but I'm 90% sure that I read or saw somewhere Paul Thomson saying that messing with the audio was fair game as long as the picture remained unmolested. Based on that, I muted out the other F-bomb so that my kids could watch my submission. Does anyone else remember this?

Regarding the argument that this was a scoring contest and no real legit director would choose this, that argument is silly because real directors DID choose this. Your best guesses about the expectations and preferences of real directors are irrelevant, because real directors made their actual choice.
Best post to end on IMO.
 

Mark Evans

New Member
It seems that all but creative inventiveness was thrown aside in the judging process
This is painful, but look. 4 categories. Let's say the judges assigned 20 points to each. Entry A scores 15 points in each. 4x15 = 60 points. Entry B scores 14 points in 3 of the categories + 19 in 'creative inventiveness' = 61 points. Entry B wins, even if in 3 of the 4 categories it ranked lower than the other.

It's like in tennis. 3 set match, scores of 6-0, 4-6, 4-6. Yes, congratulations, you won more actual games. Sadly, you don't win the match, and that's all there is to it.
 

sin(x)

Active Member
I've had no horse in this race, but watching this all go down from the sidelines makes me sad and uncomfortable all the same.

I've been lucky enough to have experienced the triumphant feeling to have your work stick out for once in a meaningful way a few times. There's little else to compare that feeling to, the afterglow of it propelled me through the middle part of my modest career so far, and I sincerely hope David gets to enjoy every bit of it, and build on it in a lasting way; he seems like a great guy with serious chops and clearly deserves it.

But I've also been around long enough to have experienced every bit and every variety of the paralyzing anxiety, the crippling self-doubt, and the soul-devouring depression it brings to be reminded that you're mostly just a nameless drop in an ocean of relative irrelevance on the other side of things again and again. It takes a toll on your character, and as much as I'd like to play some "I've learned to accept it and use rejection as a growing opportunity" card… it'd be fucking bullshit. Sure, I'd like to think I would never be lashing out in the way some of the more indignant and entitled reactions here and on YouTube have. But if I'm being sincere, I can recognize some part of myself in them. I know the feeling that fuels this kind of frustration and anger. And to be reminded that there's just… so… damn… much of that toxicity going around our industry, maybe inevitably so given how many of us are trying to jam their feet in so few doors (11.000 entries!! WTF?!) – and how it just creates this constant undercurrent of everybody being at each others' throats all the time, and how the media industry has been successfully preying on that, making damn sure it'll never change – brought a feeling of dread that I didn't really expect from what I have every reason to believe was conceived as a fun creative distraction.

Sorry, I guess I'm just in a wistful mood today. I know I should probably end my "hi, I'm an old fart and what used to be fiery passion has settled into resigned acceptance that I'd very much like you to confuse for wisdom" sermon on some attempt at sageness, but for now I'm just bummed out. Maybe next time.
 

NYC Composer

Senior Member
“I know I should probably end my "hi, I'm an old fart and what used to be fiery passion has settled into resigned acceptance that I'd very much like you to confuse for wisdom" “

I’m TOTALLY stealing this for future use. At well over 100 years old, I need to recycle the cleverness of others regarding my anachronistic yet opinionated uselessness..
 

sin(x)

Active Member
I’m TOTALLY stealing this for future use. At well over 100 years old, I need to recycle the cleverness of others regarding my anachronistic yet opinionated uselessness..
Help yourself. At 140+, my serenity and modesty are far too vast for me to hold on to concepts of creative ownership
 

Eptesicus

Senior Member
This is painful, but look. 4 categories. Let's say the judges assigned 20 points to each. Entry A scores 15 points in each. 4x15 = 60 points. Entry B scores 14 points in 3 of the categories + 19 in 'creative inventiveness' = 61 points. Entry B wins, even if in 3 of the 4 categories it ranked lower than the other.

It's like in tennis. 3 set match, scores of 6-0, 4-6, 4-6. Yes, congratulations, you won more actual games. Sadly, you don't win the match, and that's all there is to it.
I think perhaps the issue people are having is the subjectivity of what is deemed "creative inventiveness" in a musical context.

Why was adding some 8 bit sounds over some of the score deemed the most creative idea, especially when the overall idea results( in context with the video) a rather jarring and hugely distracting viewing experience?

Obviously it must have worked for the judges, but it clearly didn't connect for a massive amount of the viewership and if we are going to get into the "realities of the business" as so many people have , then that would be seen as a rather large problem.
 

Lex

Senior Member
personally, I listened to 500 entries in round 1 and 300 in round 2 - me and the team have been working hard on this - diligently and fairly - over the last 3 weeks - as we’ve mentioned a number of times now, every entry was listened to.
Congratulations to all the winners.

Hey Paul, I was wondering how many submissions have you and your team sent to Abrams, Djawadi and rest of the judges?

best,

alex
 

pawelmorytko

Active Member
This whole competition makes me think of the experience one might have when sending music off to a production music library.

If another composer sends off their music and the library loves it and accept it into their catalogue, great for them!

If you send your music off, and they didnt like it as much and it didnt fit their catalogue, trust me when I say you won’t even get a reply. They don’t owe you anything, an explanation, any feedback why they didnt pick your music. And most importantly, you dont get to insult the library, you dont get to insult the composer who got their music onto the catalogue, you dont get to demand why their music got on and not yours, you dont get to say that your music fits THEIR catalogue better than the other composer and that theirs doesnt fit. Its THEIR catalogue. You just accept you didnt get in, and move on, back to the drawing board and make some more music.

Ridicule this analogy if you will, I know it’s not the same scenario, but some principles still apply.
 

Rctec

Senior Member
I've had no horse in this race, but watching this all go down from the sidelines makes me sad and uncomfortable all the same.

I've been lucky enough to have experienced the triumphant feeling to have your work stick out for once in a meaningful way a few times. There's little else to compare that feeling to, the afterglow of it propelled me through the middle part of my modest career so far, and I sincerely hope David gets to enjoy every bit of it, and build on it in a lasting way; he seems like a great guy with serious chops and clearly deserves it.

But I've also been around long enough to have experienced every bit and every variety of the paralyzing anxiety, the crippling self-doubt, and the soul-devouring depression it brings to be reminded that you're mostly just a nameless drop in an ocean of relative irrelevance on the other side of things again and again. It takes a toll on your character, and as much as I'd like to play some "I've learned to accept it and use rejection as a growing opportunity" card… it'd be fucking bullshit. Sure, I'd like to think I would never be lashing out in the way some of the more indignant and entitled reactions here and on YouTube have. But if I'm being sincere, I can recognize some part of myself in them. I know the feeling that fuels this kind of frustration and anger. And to be reminded that there's just… so… damn… much of that toxicity going around our industry, maybe inevitably so given how many of us are trying to jam their feet in so few doors (11.000 entries!! WTF?!) – and how it just creates this constant undercurrent of everybody being at each others' throats all the time, and how the media industry has been successfully preying on that, making damn sure it'll never change – brought a feeling of dread that I didn't really expect from what I have every reason to believe was conceived as a fun creative distraction.

Sorry, I guess I'm just in a wistful mood today. I know I should probably end my "hi, I'm an old fart and what used to be fiery passion has settled into resigned acceptance that I'd very much like you to confuse for wisdom" sermon on some attempt at sageness, but for now I'm just bummed out. Maybe next time.
Hi, I am an old fart. But I haven’t lost the passion of writing scores or inventing new sounds and bits of technology for my music. But I so agree with everything I’ve read in your post above. The road of rejection teaches you nothing. It makes you hard and cynical - the antithesis to music. Nor does too much applause. I’ve got my Oscar. It didn’t make me a better composer, or change my career. Just for one night I could be insane and giddy and think it was all relevant. it was fun, but that’s it. ...who can even remember who won for what last year or the year before?

I know everyone involved with the competition - not the composers, but I’m old enough to have worked for J.J.‘s father, and actually done a film with him. And we’re both synth geeks. Ramin really got his start with me, and met the Nolan’s through our working together - which - through his enormous talent - led directly to “Westworld”. The “Spitfire” guys I consider as personal friends and more than once have we helped each other out. ...so, why am I writing this? Just to name -drop? No, actually I secretly stayed away from listening to anything that was being submitted. I thought - once the dust settles, there will be an amazing amount of music and talent that should be recognized and given an opportunity at furthering their careers. I’ve done that a lot. I don’t think that Harry G-H, or John Powell, Lorne Balfe or JunkieXL and Ben Wallfisch - as just a few examples, will think of me holding them back in forging their careers. Our whole ”Blue Planet” and all the other things ‘Bleeding Fingers’ does comes from the idea that there is an unbelievable pool of talent out there that should be given a chance.

But then I started to read the comments and the bitterness and bitchyness in most of the responses to the winner (whom I’ve never met or heard off). And I thought, why even bother with this lot. They’ve already lost. They think music is a business when it’s a passion, they forget that putting hours or days in, is a luxury you’ll never have again when you’re on a deadline on a ‘proper’ job...
but, mostly, it’s the lack of respect for someone’s moment of joy - where they should be celebrated - that got me.

so - carry on with your uninformed small minded criticism. it’s all here now in black and white for ever. The beauty of the internet. And as a reference of how i wouldn’t ever want to work with a single one of you. Nor you with me. Bad fit. It doesn’t even ever matter how good your music is or how smart you are... And since music and film-making are inherently collaborative, I can’t really see how any director will want to deal with that amount of entitlement and hubris.
hz
 

easyrider

Senior Member
This whole competition makes me think of the experience one might have when sending music off to a production music library.

If another composer sends off their music and the library loves it and accept it into their catalogue, great for them!

If you send your music off, and they didnt like it as much and it didnt fit their catalogue, trust me when I say you won’t even get a reply. They don’t owe you anything, an explanation, any feedback why they didnt pick your music. And most importantly, you dont get to insult the library, you dont get to insult the composer who got their music onto the catalogue, you dont get to demand why their music got on and not yours, you dont get to say that your music fits THEIR catalogue better than the other composer and that theirs doesnt fit. Its THEIR catalogue. You just accept you didnt get in, and move on, back to the drawing board and make some more music.

Ridicule this analogy if you will, I know it’s not the same scenario, but some principles still apply.
They send you a video sequence, ask you not to edit it or alter it in anyway just add your composition.....

you submit...you get rejected....then you find out the person they accepted also changed the video sequence audio to fit around their own composition....they get the gig...

Just sayin.....:whistling:
 

Mark Evans

New Member
I think perhaps the issue people are having is the subjectivity of what is deemed "creative inventiveness" in a musical context.

Why was adding some 8 bit sounds over some of the score deemed the most creative idea, especially when the overall idea results( in context with the video) a rather jarring and hugely distracting viewing experience?

Obviously it must have worked for the judges, but it clearly didn't connect for a massive amount of the viewership and if we are going to get into the "realities of the business" as so many people have , then that would be seen as a rather large problem.
Equally clearly there are large numbers of us who did not find it a jarring or distracting experience.

Also, even were we to watch the entire episode the first time it was broadcast but with David Kudell's piece instead of Wagner's - and it is possible that in the totality of that context it might seem disconcerting - that's still irrelevant, because that was never what the competition was about.

As for the 'realities of the business' it's just a prize, not a golden ticket.
 
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