Future Music

About

Jeremy Soule is an Academy Award-winning composer, global Top 40 producer and songwriter, technologist and an advocate for the rights and freedoms of creativity.

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  1. Tim Siow said, on October 11, 2010 at 3:49 pm

    Dear Mr. Soule,

    I am currently an amateur music writer, specializing in electronic/synthesized music with a medium amount of experience with the classical/trailer genre. After playing Supreme Commander, one of the many projects you’ve worked on, I was inspired by your compositions. Likewise, I have composed a track (written in notation then transferred into Cubase 5 with Edirol Orchestra) which revolves around the popular theme of Supreme Commander, the track “Risk Relief and Victory”.

    I was wondering if I have the permission to post a similar, personal composition of the said track online, where I can receive review/feedback from other artists.

    Please note that I am only reproducing a very short aspect of the song, which is the brass section at the very beginning of the piece.

    Regardless of your response, I will continue to look forward to your future compositions.

    Thank you for your time.

    Sincerely,

    -Tim Siow

    • Jeremy Soule said, on January 7, 2011 at 5:37 am

      As i AM the copyright holder, you have my permission to do a “derivative” work so provided you don’t use any of the graphics or other trademarks of Supreme Commander. Those are owned by Square. And good luck! I always enjoy hearing covers or works inspired by what I do. If you sell a million copies, we’ll talk about a license… but until then!! 🙂

    • C. Shawn Smith said, on January 7, 2011 at 2:14 pm

      I would love to hear the piece, so be sure to post it to this thread when you do! Supreme Commander had amazing music!

  2. Nohan Crisólogo said, on October 17, 2010 at 12:25 pm

    Hi, I’m a brazillian man who played the game “Total Annihilation” when I was younger. I loved the musics from the game and a time ago I discovered that you composed those musics. But I don’t know the musics names even after search it on the Internet. Then I ask you, if you can, to tell me the names of those musics.

    Thank you very much.

    Nohan Crisólogo.

    • Jeremy Soule said, on January 7, 2011 at 5:24 am

      Hi Nohan,

      There are all kinds of fan sites that detail the music. Total Annihilation is not in my hands from a copyright standpoint so I’ve never been able to release a proper soundtrack. Pesky copyrights!! The tracks didn’t really all have names… well they did, but they were working names. You can always tell when you see one of my working names because they are usually like one word… “Doom” or “Dread” or “Dammit”.

      Thanks for your interest!

      Best,
      Jeremy

  3. Jeff Lawhead said, on October 26, 2010 at 7:22 pm

    Good afternoon. I wanted to begin a fan-project based on Secret of Evermore and I want to know if I can your permission or what I would need to square away to begin.

    I’m a freelance, part-time student composer from the video game communities and, as both an exercise to improve my orchestration and a fun project to offer the community, I wanted to do what I guess could be called a “remastered” version of much of the Secret of Evermore OST. It is essentially a cover version with higher quality samples, some lite re-arrangement, and proper mixing and mastering. This project would be strictly a free fan-project, I don’t collect any money for it whatsoever.

    I am aware of your appreciation for the re-arrangement community, but I still do not want to even begin without your permission or knowing what I could do to fulfill this project.

    Please email me at your leisure at the email address listed above or Meteo.Xavier(at)gmail(dot)com. Thank you sir.

  4. C. Shawn Smith said, on November 5, 2010 at 12:35 pm

    Mr. Soule,

    I’ve been a fan of yours for quite some time, when I was first exposed to your music in Cavedog’s Total Annihilation Kingdoms game. You’re music almost always plays in the background while I write or do art, and I greatly appreciate your talent.

    I did have a question, however, regarding the Total Annihilation Kingdoms sountrack. I’ve never been able to find out what any of the tracks’ titles were. Do you happen to have a list of those titles, so I can match them with the correct song?

    Thank you, and I look forward to hearing from you!
    C. Shawn Smith

    • Jeremy Soule said, on January 7, 2011 at 5:35 am

      This is another, “doh”, cause I don’t know. We had numbers for track titles as no proper soundtrack was ever made. I know, it doesn’t sound very artistic but it’s true. Most composers work with cue numbers and a spreadsheet with descriptions. I’m no different in this regard. Now…. once we FINALLY do create a soundtrack for any given game, I use special enchanting powers of literary genius to name my songs… or somebody in the IT or Q&A department does it. Seriously though, I wish TAK had a proper release. Those rights are sitting with Atari… again, pesky copyrights! 😉

      • C. Shawn Smith said, on January 7, 2011 at 2:12 pm

        I agree whole-heartedly. TAK was my first online PC game, and I fell in love with it immediately, despite the bugs. But I think it was the soundtrack that really made it shine. I ended up burning the songs to a CD for my personal use, and have enjoyed them for the last 12 years or so now. Very inspirational pieces, just like all your music :). And I didn’t realize Atari had the rights now :(. They’ll be in limbo for a long time if that’s the case.

        I found a few track titles online (forget where), but wasn’t certain of their authenticity. I guess they’re as good as anything else though 🙂

        Good luck in your future indeavors!

  5. Jacob Lincke said, on November 15, 2010 at 1:56 am

    Dear Mr Soule!

    My name is Jacob Lincke, 21 years old, from Sweden. I’m studying music and production at the University of Music in Skövde and I’m currently working on a school project about composing, mainly in the area of video game music. I am trying to find a way to create a memorable theme in a music piece or some kind of leitmotif be interviewing people like you! I have heard a lot of your work (and I love it) and I’m wondering if it is possible to do a short interview about how you work etc? I could simply send you a few questions by e-mail if you concur. I would be infinitely grateful!

    Yours sincerely

    //Jacob Lincke

    PS. It was not very easy finding a way to contact you, is this intentionally?

    • Jeremy Soule said, on January 7, 2011 at 5:30 am

      Hi Jacob,

      Send your questions over to the Max Steiner Agency. They will be able to help you. And I am a aloof composer. It’s hard to reach me because I constantly hang out with people like Bono and sip martinis. 😉

      Best,
      J

  6. Col Schumann said, on January 7, 2011 at 10:41 pm

    Hello Mr. Soule,
    As it happens I am a huge fan of yours and whenever I see your name I am immediately interested. As it happens I am a young composer and I am curious about your work flow. I am wondering how you compose a piece (Like the theme from Morrowind, or that fan arrangement of Terra’s Theme, two of my personal favourites by you). My main question is, how exactly do you tackle the Orchestration, do you start with the theme and work down, or do you start with the chords the bass and the beat, and work up, and how do you do the final mixing? Is is done with a computer using soundfonts and the like, or is it recorded in a studio? If you could help me it would be much appreciated!

    Sincerely,
    Col

    • Jeremy Soule said, on January 13, 2011 at 6:08 pm

      Hi Col,

      You’ll need to spend money. Lots of it. And this is why I have a blog about creators and how we should be paid for our work. My studio is valued at more than what you might spend on a decent home. Contrary to the popular myth that musicians just need an iPad and a bedroom to make masterpieces, I’m using more than a normal civilian’s amount of computer gear and software. But to give you a few pointers, check out Kontakt by Native Instruments. I also sequence in Logic.

  7. Marc said, on January 17, 2011 at 11:22 am

    Dear Mr Soule!

    First of all, thanks a lot! Thanks for being back on Skyrim’s music! I heard an excerpt of Nerevar Rising’s new arrangement within Skyrim’s Main Theme in a GameInformer video… it’s amazing, really! It just made me shiver, remembering the first time I heard that music in Morrowind!

    Then, here’s why I write you today: I’m trying to play some pieces you composed for Oblivion (like “King and Country” or “Harvest Dawn”) on the piano for months now, and I still get stuck in each piece. I already searched for a possible Morrowind- or Oblivion songbook; however, I didn’t find any.
    So I thought “Why don’t ask Jeremy Soule directly?” Could you maybe provide me (and other fans of your work) with Oblivion and Morrowind sheets music for the piano? Or if they already exist, where are they to be found?

    Sincerely,
    Marc S.

    • Jeremy Soule said, on January 24, 2011 at 3:07 am

      Dear Marc S.,

      This music isn’t published in sheet music form. Perhaps someday it will. I do pass these requests on up to Bethesda so thanks for writing!

      Best,
      Jeremy

  8. Zac said, on January 22, 2011 at 6:10 am

    Hi Jeremy,

    Recently an news item popped up saying that you’re NOT doing the score for Duke Nukem Forever. If this is true it’s a hell of a shame.

    There was a live demo of that game that had music that sounded like your work (check http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0-97N6jNKb4 play from 5:45)

    Please get back to me about this as it’d be a damn shame if you weren’t doing the score.

    Thanks.

    • Jeremy Soule said, on January 24, 2011 at 3:05 am

      Yes, this is true. The game left 3D Realms and that was the end of my involvement.

      • Tobias said, on June 11, 2011 at 1:17 pm

        First of all, I must agree with Zac, the pieces that you composed for DNF that I’ve heard are ways beyond what the released game delivered (not bad as such, but competing against against someone who I consider to be the most talented and skilled composer in the industry… well… yeah).

        Second, what will happen with the tracks that you completed? I’d pay, with no second thought, for an “album” of sorts made up of what you managed to compose before the game changed hands. This may of course not be possible, or all up to Gearbox, but it’d be nice to get some sort of final verdict.

        Third, and final, I just have to thank you for the great tracks you’ve composed. Games like Morrowind, Oblivion, Prey, Total Annihilation and Supreme Commander with its expansion (which was interesting since it was the first time I heard you use more modern instruments) wouldn’t have been the same without your additions.

        Best wishes (from Sweden nonetheless),
        Tobias

      • Jeremy Soule said, on August 27, 2011 at 11:20 pm

        I had one of the best themes I’ve ever written all ready to go for Duke. I do have soundtrack rights and I may release this material at some point.

  9. Randall Smith said, on January 26, 2011 at 8:17 am

    Dear Mr. Soule,

    I used to be an avid video gamer. Growing up in a family where free time was either spent doing work, playing video games, or going outside, I naturally split my time up between those three (and school). I used to live in Virginia with my dad, who played every strategy game imaginable: Starcraft, Warcraft (the original ones), Total Annihilation, Command and Conquer, etc. Eventually, I moved to Pennsylvania to live with my mom, and I brought these video games with me. As I was going through the games that I used to play, I remembered the music for Total Annihilation, Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance, (later) Neverwinter Nights, (much later) Oblivion. I never knew who made up these songs, but as a teacher of music, it’s almost a requirement to know the styles of different composers in virtually every era. Lo and behold, your name popped up. I did a little research (Google), and I see your name on virtually every composition in many of the games that I remember playing when I was younger, especially Total Annihilation. I have always had a fascination with music, but only recently have I decided that this is what I plan on doing for the rest of my life. My dream is to be a music educator, and teach the youth of the next generation to really appreciate symphonic and orchestral music; the music that I’m sure you love.

    A couple of weeks ago I started to apply for Houghton College in New York. I have been recently scrambling to get scholarships and grants to this school, and double-major in Music Theory/Composition and Music Education. I came across a scholarship to create an original work of any style, and then submit it to the ASCAP Foundation– before March 1st. I have taken two years of an A.P. Music Theory class at the high school that I’m currently at. I have currently working compositions, but I am competing with everyone under the age of 30… and I’m only 17…

    I guess I’m trying to ask for advice. I have undertaken this project and I don’t know where to continue. I have the composition, it sounds decent, but it can improve… I just don’t know how to make it better.

    I know that you must be busy, and I don’t have nearly as much experience as a composer as someone as yourself; but, I guess I’m stuck at the moment, and I need outside guidance. Not guidance as in specifics (it would be breaking the rules to tell me where to resolve a seventh), but a general idea of where to go with the composition.

    Thanks, and God Bless!
    RCS

    • Jeremy Soule said, on January 26, 2011 at 5:46 pm

      Dear Mr. Smith,

      You ask an age old question in wanting to know how to make your music better. Get used to this question as it is your constant companion and stalking horse as long as you are a composer. I recommend to anyone wanting to improve their craft to go over to DirectSong or some other service and listen to Classical music and find what you like. The way to improve your craft is to learn from the Masters. You can never go wrong with this strategy. You’ll find your own voice in time and with knowledge comes an opportunity for greater expression. At 17, you’ve just begun. Don’t be discouraged by competition. I was 19 when I landed my first paying job and I was competing with experienced veterans in the business for that position.

      Best,
      JS

  10. David Klak said, on February 14, 2011 at 8:36 am

    Dear Master Soule,

    I have learnt that you are working on a music for the upcoming game “The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim” – continuation of the saga that has sold millions of copies. This game is set in a northern environment, inspired by a viking themes. I believe that to the extent to draw sufficient amount of inspiration, there is no better choice than to listen to some of the tracks from the “masters of inspiration” – the Euro-Nordic band “Bathory”, from which archetypal viking themes flows in unbelievable aesthetic quality and transcendental power, regarding following albums in particular:

    * Bathory – Hammerheart album,
    * Bathory – Twilight of the Gods album,
    * Bathory – Blood On Ice album,
    * Bathory – Nordland I and Nordland II albums.

    Of course, the well-known service such as iTunes offers perhaps the entire work of this (one-man brainchild) band.

    I believe you will agree too that especially some of the songs from these albums are among the best things anyone has ever created during the whole history of this world (not exaggerating).

    Sincerely,

    David Klak (from Europe)

  11. Steve Schreiber said, on February 15, 2011 at 1:47 pm

    Hi Jeremy! I’m a big fan, though I suppose you know that… First, Happy New Year to you, Julian and the rest of your family. Second, just an observation…Max Steiner is doing you no favors or justice with their pathetic web site. Consider moving to an agency that can provide potential business partners with examples of your music, perhaps a Bio and pics, maybe even current events and future availability for your career.

    I love your comments on the inappropriate, illegal and highly detrimental behavior of Carnegie-Mellon University and their idiot professor proclaiming the virtues of freedom of speech while simultaneously and hypocritically accepting a paycheck from the University itself. Perhaps the University should allow this “professor” to exercise his freedom of speech by working for free? Or maybe for donations…he could pass the hat after each lecture and maybe he’ll be able to buy lunch…at the McDonald’s he’d have to work at to put a roof over his head.

    If you can talk, respond to my e-mail at gmail.

    All my best,

    SS

  12. Peter Morgan said, on March 7, 2011 at 5:19 pm

    Dear Mr. Soule,

    I just want to thank you for the masterful work that you have done over the years. I just want you to know that your music has touched me even at a young age. When I first played the first Harry Potter games at around age 8, i remember remarking to myself at the wonderful music that the game had, having no idea at the time who the real composer was. When, several years later, I purchased Guild Wars, the music alone captured me in that fantasy world. You can imagine my surprise when i found that your music has been impressing me and has been magic to my ears for my whole life. I had also played Neverwinter Nights, and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic in my youth!

    They say that music is 50% of a good film. Well Mr. Soule, when it comes to your music and games, it makes up 60%. Thank you for spreading your imagination around.

    Truly your fan,
    Peter

    PS: I’ve always thought you’re so lucky having a name like Soule–because it fits so well!

  13. 細川拓也 said, on March 28, 2011 at 11:25 pm

    Greetings. I would like to ask your permission to do a bunch of remixes of your Elder Scrolls themes, in a variety of genres from electronica to heavy metal, to celebrate the upcoming Skyrim game. I won’t use actual clips from your song but I’ll be following the melody so that it’s always recognizable. I also intend to upload the remixed songs to a Japanese video site for the Japanese fans of the series who are also looking forward to the release of the game.

    I just wanna know if that’s cool with you. Thanks in advance.

    – Takuya Hosokawa

    • Jeremy Soule said, on August 28, 2011 at 3:39 am

      Hi, I can’t actually grant permissions (that’s up to Bethesda) on those scores but feel free to do whatever you want for personal use. You know I don’t have anything against remixes. I support http://ocremix.org/

  14. J Garcia said, on May 25, 2011 at 3:07 pm

    Hi! I’m Juan García, from a website about videogames and I make a weekly article about a videogame songs. I would like write one about one of your songs. But I cant really choose only one, I love’em all! so… Can you, as the composer, tell me, what is your favourite theme from your own work and write a words about that theme?

    Thanks so much Mr Soule!

    Best regards,

    • Jeremy Soule said, on August 28, 2011 at 3:35 am

      Thank you J, I don’t really have a preference in my work. I try to love all of my children equally. I hope you enjoy Skyrim, Redbood and Guild Wars 2. Those are my next titles.

  15. Brian said, on July 9, 2011 at 9:17 am

    Jeremy,

    I am an amateur music practitioner looking to get into the video game music industry. Just wondering how you would make your start today if you became unknown and had to start all over? I’ve emailed a few companies and haven’t heard back, so I’m wondering if there are other people I can get in touch with to get my ball rolling. This brings me to my next question, when you compose music on the computer, do you do your own mastering, or do you have someone else do that?

    (some samples of my work)

    If you can talk, please respond to my email.

    Sincerely,

    Brian

    (P.S. LOVED your music in Impossible Creatures, especially the big band styled themes)

    • Jeremy Soule said, on August 27, 2011 at 11:11 pm

      Thanks! The answer is in your music! Write great music, work hard… and yeah, keep knocking on doors. If you have the goods, eventually you’ll have your shot. As far as mastering, that’s handled by British Academy Award winning composer and engineer, Julian Soule.

  16. Nicholas J. Rankin said, on July 10, 2011 at 1:11 pm

    Mr. Soule:

    I would like to say “Thank you!” The music you scored for Guild Wars is among my favorite soundtracks (especially Factions and Eye of the North). Two questions pertaining to them, and one unrelated:

    Question one: How long did you have to study those types of music (Asiatic/Chinese and…I don’t know, perhaps Celtic/Icelandic) before you felt confident enough to write them? Or was it more of a “I have this idea in my mind, I’m going to go with it and see what happens?”

    Question two: Would you be opposed to a small orchestra at my college performing an arrangement of your work, if money was in no way involved?

    And question three: Are you, by chance, a Sinfonian?

    Again, thank you for the wonderful music, sir. I look forward to hearing the Guild Wars 2 score, as well as anything else you write.

    Nicholas Rankin

    • Jeremy Soule said, on August 27, 2011 at 11:09 pm

      Hi Mr. Rankin, thanks for writing! #1 I have a past life or something that allows me to write in various styles without having to study too closely. For Skyrim, there is a great deal of music that I’m not sure where it comes from. #2 Contact the Max Steiner Agency for this. They may be able to help. #3, No, but if they wanted to give me a honorary membership, I wouldn’t turn them down.

      Thank you!

  17. Tim Siow said, on July 10, 2011 at 4:45 pm

    I’ve finished composing the song and it’s been uploaded for awhile, I apologize for the late response!

    Here is a link to the piece, inspired by a song from the original Supreme Commander, “Risk, Relief and Victory”: http://forum.bandamp.com/Audio_Review/8337.html

    7:05 to 7:25 is credited to Mr. Soule.

    In case anyone is wondering, I’ve had minimal experience in music theory; I write everything on Noteworthy Composer and mix it into Cubase.

    -Tim Siow

    EDIT: I actually meant “Risk, Relief, and Victory”. My apologies for the typo, it would be appreciated if this post was uploaded instead.

  18. Xaio Majere said, on July 14, 2011 at 4:41 pm

    Dear Mr Soule.

    Thank you for Dungeon Siege, Icewind Dale, Morrowind, Oblivion and The Chamber of Secrets.
    Your music made the games what they are.

    My childhood will forever be defined by your music, and I hope to meet you one day.

    Sincerely,
    Xaio Majere

    • Jeremy Soule said, on August 27, 2011 at 10:59 pm

      Thanks, this is very great to hear! Come to a concert! I will look forward to seeing you!

  19. Damon said, on July 26, 2011 at 2:18 am

    Dear Mr Soule,
    I’m sitting at my computer listening to Morrowind music and reminiscing one of the greatest
    video game soundtracks of all time. I especially love ‘Over The Next Hill’, it gives me the chills. The music
    you created for Morrowind just gave the game an incredible atmosphere and a great sense of ‘wonder’.

    Anyway hopefully you may see this as I would love for you to know that I really appreciate your work and I
    rank you up there with Rob Hubbard as the one of the all time great game composers. Many game music
    composers today, although I’m sure are very talented, are forgettable IMHO. You sir are definitely not!
    Keep up the good work,Looking forward to Skyrim!

    Sincerely
    D.G

  20. Grant Lehmann said, on August 8, 2011 at 2:20 pm

    Hello,

    Your music has played a huge part in my life, as it has inspired me and set me on my path to becoming a Composer. I would like to first thank you so much for composing the music you do, and playing vital cores to the great video games that I’ve come to play over and over. Whether it was the magical dungeon-solving atmosphere of Harry Potter, or the epic that is Knights of the Old Republic, I feel that your music has clearly proven to flow with the video games it’s set in, and that at most points I remember the music in the background more than the actual video game. Secondly, I was wondering what classical artists you were inspired by when writing the Harry Potter scores, if there were any. And thirdly, any advice on how to get a job in the video game industry as a music composer?

    Any and all response is appreciated! Thank you, again.

    From,
    Grant Lehmann
    gwlehmann@gmail.com

    • Jeremy Soule said, on August 27, 2011 at 10:54 pm

      Thanks for writing Grant! I referenced John Williams quite a bit for HP. After all, he was the voice of the films. As far as getting into the business? Write great music, and talk to people. That’s the best way to make it. Over the years, I can’t begin to tell you how much I have had to communicate. I literally would carry around multiple cell phones.


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