UPDATED: A modest proposal: The case for a Best Music Supervision in Visual Media Grammy
We have spoken to NARAS and submitted a formal proposal to establish a “Best Music Supervision in Visual Media” category, and will update as progress warrants.
I strongly believe that in today’s music industry, the music supervisor represents a crucial position in the selection, arrangement, production and in many cases, promotion of music, for TV, film, games and advertising.
Music supervisors aren’t just glorified rights clearance coordinators executing the will of a film editor, creative producer, showrunner or director, many times they are the people a director or showrunner asks to hire and oversee composers and songwriters, to teach actors how to convincingly portray musicians, are the people responsible for creating soundtracks – and most important, the people who have, at their best, learned how to shape the message of a visual production through the creative usage of music.
And it’s not just their work to merge music and visuals. It’s a fact that in an industry that sorely needs to take advantage of every opportunity to build revenue and promotion, music supervisors are increasing some of the main paymasters and tastemakers in the business of music. Their decisions to put or not put a song in a show, game, film or ad directly correlate to the sales and audience size of artists. They control one of the few, remaining ways new music is exposed to the mass market.
Shouldn’t a group that’s so important to the music industry in 2016 be treated by the Academy with the respect they’ve earned and deserve?
As a member of the Academy, I believe creating a Best Music Supervision in Visual Media category would fit nicely within the other categories specific to visual media. Certainly, if the Academy has a category for “Best Album Notes,” a category of limited importance, they could carve out a way to recognize excellence in music supervision.
Here’s the deal. We live in a world where music has its greatest impact when it’s combined with visual media. If the Recording Academy is the industry’s official body to recognize excellence in the business, it should recognize one of the business’s most important roles in melding music and visuals. This is 2016, not 1986, and as industry roles change so should those who are recognized for their work in the business.