The Composer Chronicles

The Composer Chronicles

Stephen Trygar recounts the stories of composers past and present through the music they write. Historical episodes focus on a particular work by the featured composer and examines their life during the time the piece was written and performed. Additionally, living composers, musicians, industry professionals, and general enthusiasts are featured every other week to share their own stories and geek out over the music that we all love. Through these tales, you're invited to explore each composers' legacy and their impact in keeping the world entertained.

Episodes

July 28, 2021 18 min

This week, I am not able to post a regular episode. Instead, I have unlocked June's Unscripted episode for you to enjoy. I will be back again next week!


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Stephen Sondheim. Andrew Lloyd Webber. Richard Rogers and Oscar Hammerstein II. These are just a few names you may see shining bright on the marquees down Broadway. Spicer Carr certainly caught the musical theater bug early on, so much that he dedicated his career to writing musicals.

Featured pieces:
From Chance the Snapper: "This Town Ain't For Me", "Gravy Train", and "My Bestest Friend"
From The Rocki...

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Sometimes there are simply no words to describe exactly what you want to express. Erik Satie dug deep into the history of language to find words that would best describe his latest works, altering them just a little bit for his own purposes.

Theme music is by Daryl Banner

Listen to this episode ad-free by supporting The Composer Chronicles on Patreon.

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Music used in this ...

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Why do we find the sounds of 8-bit music so nostalgic, even those who grew up in a time when video games no longer had 8-bit soundtracks? Then, it was used out of necessity, and today it is used to add a level of creativity and to evoke a sense of nostalgia. Composer and author Daryl Banner returns to the podcast to talk about his experience with 8-bit music as both a composer of that medium as well as someone who still enjoys his ...

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June 30, 2021 61 min

Video game and media composer Jamal Green set out on a journey that he thought would lead him in a very specific direction, but where he ended up, he would have it no other way. Jamal has seen considerable success writing for video games and film, writing the scores to games such as Equilinox, Sizable, Konami’s Skelattack, and most recently TOEM by Something We Made. Since 2019, he has scored two films, first the feature film Aberd...

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J. M. Gerraughty quickly became one of The Composer Chronicles' closest friends after his episode (Ep. 34) aired in January 2021. After sharing his joy for being on the podcast with the Twitter-verse, he sparked some excitement within the composer community, giving The Composer Chronicles an opportunity to flourish into the platform that it is now. On this episode of the "Backstage" series of Unscripted, we catch up wit...

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Life is about making the most of everything you've got, no matter how long your time is here on this big, blue marble. Lili Boulanger, the younger sister of the renowned pedagogue Nadia Boulanger, only lived to the age of 24, but during her short life, she was able to accomplish more than what most composers of her time could only dream of.

Theme music is by Daryl Banner.

Become a member of The Composer Chronicles on Patreon to...

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June 16, 2021 77 min

In order for you to be successful, all you have to do is be proud of what you put into your craft. This is one of the great pieces of advice that composer Juan Pablo Contreras lives by every day writing music. Juan Pablo is a Latin Grammy-nominated composer and Universal Music recording artist who has combined his love of Western classical music and Mexican folk music to formulate his own unique style of writing.

Featured piece: Ma...

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June 9, 2021 77 min

The world of music doesn't always have to be black and white. Genres of music don't always have to remain individualized and separate, and composers are not required to stick to writing a specific genre of music. Alan Theisen, a composer, saxophonist, author, and educator, is a man who appreciates all types of music and uses his background to meld genres of music that would often never be considered together, encouraging th...

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It’s no secret that Pierre Boulez led a double life as a composer and conductor. Kevin Fitzgerald, a conductor in his own right, has looked up to Boulez as his hero, and he shares his knowledge about the man and his career from the eyes of a conductor.⁣

Music discussed in the episode:
Improvisation I sur Mallarmé | Improvisation II sur Mallarmé
Notations pour Orchestre | Dérive 2
Mémoriale (...explosante fixe... originel) | Répons
...

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When we hear the name George Gershwin, we often associate it with jazz or musical theater, but he didn't see himself that way. He saw himself as a standard composer of his time and influenced by the sounds around him. So what does that mean for his opera Porgy and Bess? Or is it a Broadway musical?

DISCLAIMER: This episode contains acts of extreme violence, hints at sexual misconduct, and deals with racial controversy. Listener...

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May 19, 2021 66 min

From the United Kingdom, then to the United States, and and now Singapore, media composer Pearl Yim has seen great success with her music all across the world. Pearl talks about her experience in the fields of film and video game composing and the struggles she faced in order to get where she is today.

Featured pieces:
Ellipsis (GTA V Machinima Short Movie)
"On The Run" from the Westworld Scoring Competition
The Mermaid'...

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May 12, 2021 25 min

Music, much like any art form, has been a staple in nearly every culture for thousands of years. We often forget where these arts have their roots, and to better understand the music of the last few hundred years, we must go back even further... no matter how grim.

Theme music is by Daryl Banner: https://darylbanner.bandcamp.com/

Become a member of The Composer Chronicles on Patreon to get ad-free versions of all the episodes, earl...

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Andrew Gavin was The Composer Chronicles' first composer feature back in August, 2020. Since his first appearance, he has been back for an episode of "Movie Night", has composed the theme music to Unscripted, and has also compose the music of the Alexandria Media pre and post episode tags. On this first episode in the "Backstage" series of Unscripted, Andrew is back again! On this series, past guests of The Comp...

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The warm, rich tones produced by the cello have been a siren to many composers, calling them to compose for the instrument whether or not it was in their best interest to do so. Cellist Steven Chen gives his professional knowledge and opinion on the cello and the pieces written for it!⁣

Theme music is by Daryl Banner: https://darylbanner.bandcamp.com/

Where to find Steven:
Website | Facebook | Instagram
Twitter | YouTube

Video vers...

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In the first drafts of Beethoven's Symphony No. 3, there is a name that appeared as the subtitle before it was scribbled out and changed to 'Eroica'. Originally Beethoven dedicated this symphony to his personal hero, a man who would soon instigate his own demise when he crowned himself Emperor, Napoleon Bonaparte.

Theme music is by Daryl Banner: https://darylbanner.bandcamp.com/

Beethoven Symphony No. 3 in E-flat major ...

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April 21, 2021 87 min

Brooks Leibee has dedicated much of his career to the art of film making. However, it is his scores for those films that he is most proud of. In this episode, Brooks shares his journey and gives deeper insight into his world.

Featured pieces:
"Two Wrongs" from Mire
"The Fallen Jedi" from Trial of the Fallen Jedi
Credits Suite from Aliyah
Entrance
Spring Rescore

Theme music is by Daryl Banner: https://darylbanner.ban...

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Coming off of the success of his first two operas, young Erich Wolfgang Korngold set out to write his third. His success was so massive, that opera houses all over duked it out for the rights to stage the premier, leaving Korngold with the tough decision of who to give those rights to.

Theme music is by Daryl Banner: https://darylbanner.bandcamp.com/

Become a member of The Composer Chronicles on Patreon to get ad-free versions of a...

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Have you ever tried recalling a tune from a film you love and have a hard time remembering what it is? Or, have you been so mesmerized by a tune that you'll never forget it in all your days? Ben Morales Frost, a composer of film scores, is a strong advocate for the use of melody in film music. In this episode, Ben talks about some of his own film scores as well as some of his favorites that have inspired him.

Featured pieces: &...

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March 31, 2021 80 min

The world of opera isn't all glitz and glam. Opera maker Evan Kassof has dedicated his life to telling stories in a way that gives audiences a chance to step out of the opera house and potentially stumble upon something new in an unsuspecting place. Evan voices his opinions about the opera world of the past and how he is actively pushing the art in a direction that gives more people the chance to see the artform in a brand new ...

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