The 3 Books Film Composers MUST-READ

January 4th, 2021  |  by amaliehluthra

3 film composing books:

Are you thinking of becoming a film composer? Or are you currently studying and want to expand your knowledge? Well, we have the list for you today.

Learning is a crucial element for any film composer; whether new to the game or you’ve been in the industry for years, constant development is much needed. 

We have read and reviewed some of the best film composing books out there and collected a list of our own to help you out.

These 3 film composing books are some of the best out there for film scoring and broadening your horizon to help you develop into a much better film composer.

Here are the 3 Books Film Composers MUST-READ.

All You Need to Know About the Music Business by Donald S. Passman

The 3 Books Film Composers MUST-READ

This book isn’t specifically on film scoring, but it’s all about the business of film scoring, which is integral to maintaining a paid career as a film composer. This book teaches you the important information about film scoring’s business acumen and will help you build upon your career.

Becoming a full-time film composer will need you to have more than just talent. You will need to be able to seize a business opportunity for you to showcase your talent.

Sadly, many talented composers are ruled out as they don’t grasp the business side of composing.

On The Track by Fred Karlin and Rayburn Wright

The 3 Books Film Composers MUST-READ

This book is one of our favourites; it’s a detailed, in-depth look into film scoring with a plethora of examples of film scores that have been broken down into the finest detail.

It’s the perfect study guide to film scoring, and they even recommend scores to study in order to help you develop and improve as a film composer.

We advise people only to read this book if they’re past the beginner stage of composing. Only because it goes into so much depth that if you don’t know the basics, you have the potential to get lost in it.

The Study of Orchestration by Samuel Adler

The 3 Books Film Composers MUST-READ

The Study of Orchestration is aimed at composers who write for orchestra, so it’s definitely in the niche area of film composing books, but never the less it’s still essential.

Samuel Adler presents some interesting findings that will teach you a lot about writing for orchestra and understanding the techniques to the most minuscule of details.

The score analysis in Samuel Adler’s book is one of the most significant selling points as it allows you to understand the thinking behind each score and how it’s achieved.

Definitely a book we recommend to expand your composing knowledge and insight.

Overall these three books will help you understand film scores to the next level, break down film scores, and understand the lengths it takes to achieve success in the world of film composing.


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