Sunday, 24 May 2015

Paid or Unpaid and How To Professionally React To That Question


This question of   "Do You Charge?"  often offends composers which ive found odd tbh, i mean ive seen the question pop up around facebook, forums and random blogs, most the replies are often pretty sarcastic and seriously unprofessional.


FACT 1.
Their are millions of musicians willing to work for free, you must know this right?
(also note... i am Not saying you should work for free!!!)

The point i am making is the VAST MAJORITY of musos trying make it, will work for free...
(some directors have to ask for legal reasons)

FACT 2.
A lot of directors can NOT work with musicians who work for free

1 example, A project with a budget per department needs receipts, can you provide official invoices with Your Company Header?  do you even understand that side of the industry?

2nd example, insurance, are you even worthy of being held accountable when investors throw a law suit at the director because you failed to deliver on time and share holders want blood.
Do you even have any form of liability insurance?
contract costs, credits, percentage of the gross.. paperwork = back tracking by the tax man or investors..  who wants a benefit fraud on the credits?

FACT 3.
A lot of you uptight composers need to really think outside the box...
and consider just how viable you really are Beyond your sound...
because your in an industry were there are a Zillion Alternatives to you...

If your asked do you charge, say maybe.. depends on the project
(don't say do you lol) Take an interest, this movie could be the making of you and he's doing the actual work and the faffin with all the departments, your jobs simple really, if he can manage a movie, you can do more than just compose music..

Say DEPENDS ON THE PROJECT..   ask if its charity based, then ask/or has it got funding, does the film have a distributor, are there investors, is there a time frame, try and sound like you actually know what your doing, like you've done this before.

The worst thing you can ever say is NO
the 2nd worst thing to say is YES

You should be flexible to hear someone out BUT you should also be versatile in the Industry to be able to see just where this persons heads at, dream land or a real world.

Why not co-direct for credit, or co-produce, take an additional credit, possibly help improve the film, ur composing the music, you have a feel for the scenes, the characters UR the one person on set that's probably got the most empathy to each of the characters.. that's a viable asset and i know as ive worked on a few actual movie sets (amateur stuff, but the odd pause and single word change has brought more depth to a scene) It depends on the project your working on and the directors and the writers.

One rule of thumb.. don't be all exited when a director even gets in touch with you.. after all.. just where is his assistant or secretary.. ber that in mind..  Maybe he likes you ant felt he should aproach you.. or maybe he just can't afford the staff.

Remember NO and YES  are both the wrong answer....