Friday, April 29, 2011

Will's Father

I am done with school for the semester, so I finally have free time! So, let's get started...
I'll answer the questions that everyone asked on the Celtic post. But first, I would like to thank everyone for the encouraging words, ideas, and advice! It really meant a lot to me.
Question #1 from Noah: What do you think about Hans Zimmer? I think he is very original and has a great sound. The Pirates of the Caribbean and Sherlock Holmes are two of my favorite soundtracks, along with many of his others. While he is one of my favorite composers, my all time favorite is still James Newton Howard.
Question #2 from Jill Williamson: How many instruments do you play? My primary instrument is piano, and my “secondary” is flute (the fingering on the flute is the same for the piccolo, so I can also can play the piccolo). And I used to play the violin. I really want to learn all the instruments in the orchestra. How cool would that be?!
Question #3 from Cson: Has Peter Jackson talked to you about composing a soundtrack for The Hobbit movies yet? That’s classified information. :D

Before I get into the contest/new music, I wanted to say that... I've been interviewed!
Millardthemk, who by the way has an awesome blog interviewed me about two months ago. I forgot to mention is here on my blog... just click here to read it. Sorry it took me so long!

The contest: here are the names that people sent in...

for Celtic:
Inis Breeze
Greenfinch Beckons
The Wild Hills of Erin
The Hebride Fisherman

for Action/Adventure:
The Safest Way To Travel
Hidden Infiltrator
M-15 Valley

So, now you vote! Which name should they be? The polls are to the left... they will be closed in two weeks. Whoever gets the most votes wins.

And now, a new song: two months ago, I did another song for Ranger's Apprentice. I just couldn't help myself. This one is called Will's Father. The song is based off the scene where the character Halt tells Will about his (Will's) father, and how he died a heroic death saving him ("him" being Halt). Here it is:

Will's Father by Jon M.

Please let me know what you think!
Right now, I'm working furiously on my pirates song. Maybe I'll post a sample soon...

Thanks for listening,

Jonathan Maiocco

Monday, April 18, 2011

Action/Adventure, etc...

Bang! Bang bang... *gunshot!!!* Crash... glass flies everywhere. KAAaaa-BOOM! [fire-ball flies into the sky]. More gunfire... bang bang. Bang.... then bang.
Thats about sums up what inspired this song. Action/adventure movies are my most favorite movies of all time. Period. End of story. I listen to action/adventure soundtracks all the time, my favorites being The Bourne Ultimatum (John Powell), Eagle Eye (Brian Tyler), and Salt (James Newton Howard).
The song below is short (1:30) because I had originally written it for a contest where the music had to be 1:30 or shorter. I had fun writing it, and I can't wait to try again. I've been getting mixed reactions on the song though. Some people liked it, some didn't. What do you think?

Action/Adventure by Jon M.

On April 14th, Ridley Pearson (author of The Kingdom Keepers) was in Atlanta! I originally couldn't go to the book signing, so I wrote him a letter with a CD that had my It's a Small World song on it. But, at the last minute, I made it! Here is a picture of me with him: 

He was really nice, and seemed excited about my song on the CD. I don't know if he's heard it yet, but I'm hoping to find out soon. So that was very exciting for me. I also got all of my books signed, including The Kingdom Keepers:

Next on the list... I have decided to have a contest. Yes, a contest. Here's the deal: I need names for my Celtic song and my Action/Adventure song. So, you name them for me. Email me (at one name for each song (two names in the end), and I will put them in a poll that will be open for a week. (There will be two separate polls, one for the Celtic, and the other for the action/adventure). Then, you and whoever else will vote on which name is the best. If you win in one of the categories, then you get any two of my songs for free. (And I guess if you win in both categories, you get any four songs for free). Your choice on which songs (just look on my website). Done. How does that sound? The deadline to send in the names May 27th. I will put the polls up then, and then in one week, they will close.

And lastly, the poll on the side says that I should compose to Wayne Thomas Batson's Isle of Swords and/or Fire.
  1. Isle of Swords/Fire [14 votes]
  2. A Bryan Davis Book [13 votes]
  3. (more) Ranger's Apprentice [11 votes]
  4. 100 Cupboards & The Hunger Games [8 votes]
  5. (more) Dream House Series & "Other..."[5 votes]
  6. (more) Kingdom Keepers [3 votes]
So, that means the next genre is pirates. Savvy? I'm listening to Curse of the Black Pearl right now for some inspiration. This should be fun! 

Thanks for listening,

Jonathan Maiocco

P.S. Make sure to vote in the new poll! After pirates, what should I do? And also, in the next post, I'll make sure to answer everyone's questions. 

Friday, April 15, 2011


I have officially written a Celtic piece. I am very excited to show it to you!
My process of writing this piece: I first came up with a 16-bar melody, which you hear at the beginning of the piece twice. I wanted it to sound like a typical (yet catchy) jig. The flute at the beginning is me playing my flute (which has a wooden head joint). Instead of using a typical Celtic ensemble (like harp, flute, dulcimer, etc.) I wanted to do the ensemble plus an orchestra. So, if you know the music for The Water Horse by James Newton Howard (who by the way, is my favorite film composer), then you'll know what I was aiming for. Here it is:

Celtic by Jon M.

So... let me know what you think! I'd really appreciate it. This is my first time composing a Celtic piece, so this is all new to me. I'll take all comments, critiques, and advice.

I will post my Action/Adventure piece very soon.

Thanks for listening,

Jonathan Maiocco

P.S. Any name ideas for this song? I couldn't think of any!