Composer Christophe Beck and his influence on my career

For those of you unaware, Christophe Beck is a successful film composer who started off in the world of television. I began watching the show Buffy in 1997, late in the third season. It was a period of my life filled with change, good and bad, and I was surprised to find a show about pretty people fighting the undead would suck me in, literally. I had not watched a serialized drama in many years, and had pretty much passed on television in general. Writer/Director Joss Whedon brought me back by creating a world that was filled with fantasy as an analogy to realism. I have always been into film scores, I’ve owned soundtracks since I was young. Never before had I heard a television score that sounded like film. Chris Beck created an emotional background for the episodes that was it’s own character, and although there are many television composers that I love today, none have composed quite like Beck. I culled the internet for bootleg copies of his music, and it was during that time period that I realized what I wanted to do with my artistic ability. I credit Chris for giving me the inspiration to write for film and television, and I will always have an affinity for TV over film for that reason.

A few years ago, I came across the only fan site for Beck, run by an Englishman named Ian Davis. I began to chat with Ian, which turned into lengthy emails, and over the last two years we’ve become good friends despite the ocean between us. On Ian’s site he reviews not only Chris’ film scores, but his episodes from Buffy. The reviews take each musical moment and analyze them for instrumentation and theme. I offered to help out if he needed it, and he promptly handed me Season 3.

I realized immediately after delving into the first episode that Chris’ music was more intertwined than I had originally thought. He used themes that started as a few piano notes in the first episode that came to an orchestral climax 2/3 of the way into the season. Characters and relationships had their own themes, which were written differently depending on the mood and status at the time.

The reason for this blog, other than to bring attention to the composer that shaped my career choice, is to provide a link to the reviews I’ve written. Ian handled Season 2 and I took on Season 3, with plans to work on the 4th together. I’d taken an extended break with the reviews when my career took off, but with only four episodes left I’m intent on finishing them shortly, and will post when they’re up. For now, when you have some time, check out the ones I’ve already written at the Resource Site for Christophe Beck. They’re a great insight to not only Chris’ process, but my thought process when analyzing a score, or writing one for someone else.