NAME: Jason Graves
COMPANY: Jason Graves Music
CAN YOU DESCRIBE YOUR COMPANY?
We compose music. And that’s really the royal “we,” especially since it’s just me, myself and I.
WHAT’S YOUR JOB TITLE?
President and Ruler of All Things Music
THAT IS PRETTY IMPRESSIVE! WHAT DOES ALL OF THAT ENTAIL?
Arranging, orchestration, traveling for recording sessions, traveling for conferences, answering email, organizing software libraries, keeping current back-ups of all hard drives, computer network maintenance, sweeping the floors, mixing and mastering. Oh, and music composition fits in there somewhere.
ANYTHING ELSE THAT MIGHT SURPRISE PEOPLE ABOUT WHAT YOU DO?
It also involves feeding and watering all the chickens located next to the studio in the backyard.
WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE PART OF THE JOB?
Knowing that I’m not only free but encouraged to be as creative as possible.
WHAT’S YOUR LEAST FAVORITE?
The inevitable deadline of said creativity.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE TIME OF THE DAY?
First thing in the morning when I have the entire day ahead of me.
IF YOU DIDN’T HAVE THIS JOB, WHAT WOULD YOU BE DOING INSTEAD?
I can’t imagine not having this job. It’s all I’ve done my entire life, even since before I graduated from college.
HOW EARLY ON DID YOU KNOW THIS WOULD BE YOUR PATH?
I’ve always been drawn to music, starting with singing in musicals when I was five. Voice lessons, dance lessons (which I’m convinced helped my overall coordination, especially drumming), piano lessons, drum lessons, mallet lessons, timpani lessons, guitar lessons…from elementary school through high school.
The only reason I risked music as a profession is my parents and their everlasting support for what I loved. They encouraged me to follow my heart. Without their encouragement I imagine I would have been a lawyer or something.
CAN YOU NAME SOME RECENT PROJECTS YOU HAVE WORKED ON?
I recently wrapped a rock-based feature film score for the film Adrenaline with John Schneider. I’m currently scoring Operator with Ving Rhames.
In the video game world, I’m wrapping up my score for Evolve, an online multiplayer from Turtlerock Studios. I’ve been working with them for more than two years on that score.
Murdered: Soul Suspect came out in March of this year, and Fat Chicken is currently on Steam.
Tomb Raider and Dead Space 3 were a few of the bigger titles from last year. I’m afraid all my other projects are still officially under wraps as far as my involvement goes.
WHAT IS THE PROJECT THAT YOU ARE MOST PROUD OF?
The Dead Space video game series is probably at the top of my list. I was given a lot of creative freedom on those scores and learned so much during production. They literally changed the way I think about music, from composition to production.
NAME THREE PIECES OF TECHNOLOGY YOU CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT.
– Musical instruments — nice and vague, but I would be nowhere fast without them.
– Microphones, because I’ve got to be able to record all those live sounds and players.
– And lastly, the computers we composers depend on to record all that music into.
Everything else can fall by the wayside, but without those three essential ingredients I’m dead in the water!
WHAT SOCIAL MEDIA CHANNELS DO YOU FOLLOW?
I’m afraid that I’m fairly archaic when it comes to social media, but I do try and show up to Facebook and Twitter on occasion.
WHAT KIND OF MUSIC ARE YOU LISTENING TO ON YOUR DAYS OFF?
The weekends are my “bounce back” time, so I’ll be playing music then. Mostly things that my wife or kids want to listen to. Recent selections have run the gamut from AC/DC, Pink Floyd, John Powell, Howard Shore, Foo Fighters, Prince, John Williams and Miles Davis.
WHAT DO YOU DO TO DE-STRESS FROM IT ALL?
I’ve definitely developed a thicker skin in the last few years and try not to let the deadlines stress me out too much. I’ve never had a client with higher expectations than my own…whether that’s a good thing or not, I’m not sure!
My overall basic de-stressor involves nights and weekends off. Pretty simple but makes a world of difference to my mental state of mind. A glass of wine at the end of the day doesn’t hurt, either.