19th October 2017

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Adam Adams has just entered his final year of the BA Hons Music Production course at BIMM Bristol. As someone with a keen interest in orchestral film-scoring, we took time-out to pick his brains on what gets his creative juices flowing and what plans he has for the year ahead.

Tell us about your personal/musical background?

I’m from the small village on the south-east of Poland. Since I was 3, I had a thing for music and my parents quickly picked up on it and sent me to piano lessons. Later on, I have moved to a proper music conservatory where I have studied piano and classical music for 6 years. When I finished, I wasn’t very keen on keys so I started learning how to play guitar and sing. I even formed a rock band which was quite successful in the area for couple of years. That was really fun. After that came college and I found myself singing in a choir, doing accompaniment for vocalists on piano (I realised how I missed playing the keys and came back to it) or guitar and writing songs. After the polish equivalent of A-levels I thought “Well, there’s not much for me to do in that area in Poland, so maybe I should go abroad?”. That is how I found myself at BIMM!

How did you first become interested in music for moving image?

It was my final project for Video & Multimedia Production module on my first year at BIMM. We decided to do animation which turned out pretty great considering it was our first. We divided our roles and I was responsible for the music. Since we didn’t have any voices recorded, we had to rely on visuals and music to tell the story. I knew very well how powerful music in a movie can be, having watched tons of movies, but it was this assignment that showed me how rewarding it can be. Just a week later I, went to Film Music Festival in Krakow where I took part in masterclasses and met many young and aspiring (as well as established) composers for movies, TV and video games and it influenced my decision further that it would be a great career path for me!

Who are your biggest influences in terms of film scorers & composers?

It’s really hard to choose, but I think it would be John Williams (because of the colorful orchestration and memorable melodies that we all know very well from Star Wars, Raiders of the Lost Ark or E.T.), Bernard Hermann (because of his groundbreaking scores, limitless curiosity and being bold enough to try something new and interesting, which then became iconic like Vertigo, Psycho or Taxi Driver) and Hans Zimmer (because of the invention of orchestral sampling and turning the world of film music upside down, which gave us all possibilities to enjoy great scores such as The Lion King, Gladiator and Interstellar)

What are your top 5 movie scores/themes?

Again, there’s so many… I think I’ll go with:

  1. Hans Zimmer – Time (from Inception)
  2. Lisa Gerrard, Klaus Badelt, Hans Zimmer – Now We Are Free (from Gladiator)
  3. John Powell – Test Drive (from How to Train Your Dragon)
  4. Michael Kamen – Main Theme (from Band of Brothers)
  5. Danny Elfman – Ice Dance (from Edward Scissorhands)

But they are all equally important for me.

How has Music Production course helped you so far?

It certainly helped me find my niche and work towards developing my abilities further. I have been learning orchestration, classical harmony and doing mockups on my own while getting better at mixing and mastering at my Music Production course. There were great modules along the way like Video & Multimedia Production and Commercial Composition, which is by far my favourite module.

Any ideas on what you’ll be doing for your Production Project module this year?

I have some ideas involving experiments in film scoring, doing a showreel for my future employers and releasing an album of library music. We will see which idea will be the best one to help me develop my abilities to a professional standard as well as finding my own unique voice.

What’s your dream career after finishing your course at BIMM?

I always try to remember that when you work hard enough, dreams become just other goals. So my goal is to work with the best composers and directors and have fun doing it! Preferably on the west coast of the United States but we’ll see where my career takes me!

What advice would you offer someone who’s just starting the BA Hons in Music Production?

Make the best out of your time at BIMM because it goes by so fast! Work hard, party hard, network hard!


James Watts

Social Media Assistant, Professional Bassist and Music Journalist. Career highlights include performing at some of the UK's premier music festivals, recording in Abbey Road and interviewing Debbie Harry.