Ep. 80 What's In Your Briefs?

May 24, 2023

Today we’re decoding Sync Licensing Briefs with Josh Doyle!

Mike and Josh delve into the ever elusive world of sync licensing briefs. Josh, a returning guest of the show, is a coach, mentor, and successful sync licensing producer and songwriter. He's sharing his insights and experiences in deciphering sought-after information in the licensing community. Because more often than not, musicians are left perplexed and end up creating content that doesn't match the intention of the scene or the supervisor's requests.

Whether you're a beginner or aiming for the top-tier placements like trailers or ads, this episode is a must-listen. Josh and Mike take us through the process of understanding and interpreting briefs, shedding light on the language and code within them. They uncover the key elements that are vital to grasp, distinguishing between what's important and what's not. 

Listen now if you want to know the essential questions artists should ask when dissecting a brief, and be empowered to make informed creative decisions! 

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Or Read the transcript ....


Mike Meiers 0:00
Hey, I'm Mike Meiers and this is the song rank for guitar podcast which is geared to support songwriters and producers to gain confidence and turn pro. I bring on industry experts to help you improve and monetize your skills, Engage better in the writing process, and build healthy habits to create a sustainable career. You love caffeinated, inspirational, conversational.

Hey, What's up friends, Mike Meiers here with the song rank for guitar podcast episode number 80. What's in your briefs? Now, this episode, Josh Doyle is back one of our coaches, my mentor, friend, Powell, compadre, and we're going to talk about sync licensing briefs. Now, these are the things that everybody wants, but once they get it, they still don't know what to do with it. Because it's deciphering this language, this code, what do they want? What do they not want? What's important, what's not important, what's vital, what's crucial, and we're gonna get into all of that. And the way Josh really takes that brief and understands it and his interpretation, and how it's worked to his success. So if you are someone that's in that mid level, or beginner level of sync, or you're reaching for that higher tier, where Josh is going after those as those trailers, you really have to listen to this episode, because I know I got there were lots of moments you're gonna hear where I was like, what, that's where Josh really kind of opened my eyes to kind of his view. So here we go. Let's dive into it. Episode number 80.

What's up Josh, how are you?

Josh Doyle 1:53
I'm doing really well. How are you doing?

Mike Meiers 1:54
I'm doing good. This is your your 47th time joining us again, on the podcast.

Josh Doyle 2:00
Yeah, I think I need a Like a Girl Scout sash with all of my like little award pins for each time I've been on the

Mike Meiers 2:08
it's like Saturday Night Live isn't like how many times you host there's a certain amount of like, you know, I think it's like John Goodman has hosted the most,

Josh Doyle 2:15
I think, right? There's like a secret club in the back.

Mike Meiers 2:18
Well, we'll come up with something I'll give you like a coffee mug or something that's just like, but I think this episode, we we've had an insider session about this where we've talked about it. And even then we were like, there's still more we could talk about this. Because the idea of when you get into licensing, you get this thing that's called briefs, which is funny, because it's like you think of underwear. It's just like, I've got lots of briefs. Cool. I mean, thanks for sharing that. But I have to, I have to dissect this brief. Okay, that's weird. Yeah. But we're gonna get into the idea of so when you get something like this to the point where you start making contact with a licensing agency, or a music supervisor starts adding you to their email list, and they start sending you Hey, I just got this brief. There is so many, so many things, at least for me, when I started where it was like, Okay, how much should I be following from this, that they want? Or how much should I not be following this? And to me, this seems like, oh, no, when you see that meme of like, That guy looking and there's all these equations and like, numbers floating around, like, what should this be? That's what it feels like. Because it's, it's up to you to decipher what is important, and what isn't. And that just seems impossible.

Josh Doyle 3:39
You know, the other added complication is that you remember, like in elementary school, playing the game of telephone, where you'd like whisper to one friend, and then they would whisper and get all the way around the class. Did you ever play this? No. What is this? Oh, man, man, our teachers always had us do it when we had like, five minutes left of class, and they they couldn't like they just had to like burn time. So basically, you know, you're like sitting in rows, right? Okay. And like, so they would start at the beginning, or, you know, like the the front corner, and the teacher would come up and whisper like a short phrase in your ear. And it would be like, you know, I like bubble gum or something like that. And so you'd whisper it to that person. And by the time it got through, like all 20 kids in your class. The thing was, like, could they keep the message and it never ended up being correct by the time like, by the end, it was like, elephant shoe tennis shoes or something like that. It was like that sounds nothing like I love bubblegum. And so it was always funny. You know, it's kind of like Mad Libs a little bit. But it's kind of like this with the briefs because it's coming from like a director who's then talking to the music supervisor, who's then communicating it to their, you know, to us. Yeah, and we're trying to interpret it. So there is like this bit of like, lost in translation a little bit. That's There's that psychology to it too.

Mike Meiers 5:02
That's a great like, yeah, I've never heard of that guy. That's really funny because it's just, how many times does that phrase get changed a little bit and changed a little bit and especially, but even just the slightest bit, and just what you're describing right now, I didn't even think of that, like the chain of like, oh, this and then this and this. And this? What's changed in the delivery? And how did so and so interpret what they said, when they got that information?

Josh Doyle 5:29
Yeah, even if it's like from the, you know, the director has a vision, and they're too busy. So they assign it to their assistant director or maybe their music clearance person on their team, and then they're talking to the music supervisor. Yeah. You know, like, there's, there's definitely, and then you maybe have like, the the studio, the major label studio, the people in the suits, they're like putting in their two cents, which is diluting what's really, you know, going to end up on screen? Yeah, so there's a lot of, you definitely have to be thinking about that, that blew

Mike Meiers 5:58
my mind. Because if you go through that chain of command, each one is thinking of a different element of the song or why that's important, or what that means. And so suddenly, then we trickled down to now it's gotten into this little, like, blurb, and then maybe, maybe you get a reference or two, not always, sometimes you just get like, a scene or you get an emotion or a thing that they go, must have this word must have this phrase, if you're lucky, you might get a you know, some example, you might and then maybe you get two examples. You get five and you're just like, gosh, which one? Do I listen? Which one do I use? Is my main one, my secondary? And can I listen to all of these and find the, you know, what is the continuing theme? Yeah, oh, this is where it gets. Where I don't know if you know, there's two ends of the pendulum where somebody, you know, swings one way, and they basically give, it's funny when you give, you know, someone new to this, like, Hey, mate, this is your reference, go ahead and make something and they make like a carbon copy. I mean, like verbatim, the melody is very similar. The, the sounds are similar, not like a lower version of that. And I don't mean that in a bad way. Because it's like, it's kind of like, there's nothing wrong with the value time Cheerios from Walmart, it's like, it's great. It's delicious. And it's awesome. But you could tell like, okay, the box is a little bit different than the Cheerios, okay? That's what I feel you get, and it's, that doesn't work. And then you swing to the other side of the pendulum, which is cool, I'm gonna be, you know, I'm gonna take this brief. And then they say, this was the brief, and this is what they were looking for. And you're like, Man, I It's like searching through a, you know, like a pearl and oatmeal or something. I'm like, Man, this is really messy. I don't know where you got this. It's like, what we're looking for is that, just that middle ground, that sweet spot of like, cool, I can see how you use some of the elements, it's definitely fits that same vibe, I could find it in a playlist. And but at the same time, it feels authentic. But it's also it's different. It still is what they're looking for. And I think this will work. How do we get to that center? You know, without, you know, those two opposite ends?

Josh Doyle 8:28
Yeah, I mean, the thing that I'm always looking at, always kind of coming back to is, anytime they write, like a little synopsis of what the scene is, yeah, that usually seems to be the most honest. Because you're dealing with like, generally, you're dealing with, you know, people who are great at telling visual stories. And they might have, you know, maybe they went to college, and their favorite band was so and so. And they really want to use it in the scene. And maybe it kind of works, but really, like, I don't know, like, I think you have to look at the scene and get in tune with what the emotional target is. Yeah. You know, and, yeah, I mean, the references are great. And, you know, you can try and draw. I mean, the, I'm not understanding the references at all, because it's like, I almost never submit to briefs that don't have references. If they're not like really, okay. Yeah, we can get into that too. But yeah, I'm always just trying to get in tune with the more in tune with like the story and the emotional target of like, what they're trying to capture, what are they trying to support with this music in the story? That's almost like my main priority. And then it's like listening to the references. And those are really like kind of my two main things now.

Mike Meiers 9:56
I just for context for people because especially if they're listening to this They don't know, Josh, I mean, you have hundreds upon hundreds of placements. One song, just one of your songs has made well over 100,000 like that. So it's just like, This isn't like you just being like, oh, you know what this, it's like you've done this, where it's like you have a system and a process to where you built. This is like, to me, that's interesting that you don't if it doesn't have like a reference, you just like, rarely do you go after it.

Josh Doyle 10:27
I was in the period where any brief that came in, I was writing to it, I was saving, like, if I couldn't get to it that week, by the deadline, I was still saving it. And when on my list of like, I'm gonna write something to that, regardless of how poorly it was written or, you know, whatever. And I've done the thing where I've like, man, so many times, I stayed up through the night to meet like, a 24 hour deadline. And only to find out, like, the brief didn't have references. It was just like, they didn't really know what they wanted. And I killed myself, like getting a song done to pitch to it, and it didn't land. And I just like, over time, I just realized, like, like, those people don't really know what they want. And I feel sorry for the music supervisor, because they're trying to like, yeah, pick out of their brain, what they're really going after, and they're doing their best. So I don't like necessarily blame anybody, but there's just certain circumstances where they want like, something that's never been heard before. But they also want something that sounds retro and familiar. And they want you know, all these like, cool. They want to make their their film seem like fresh and authentic. And, but they don't want to, like copy anything that's come before. So then you're like, stuck being like, what, what do you want? I don't, I could basically, I would take, instead of like, not writing for that brief. Yeah. And being like, Oh, I'm gonna go play video games, I'd be like, I'm gonna take that time and write something that could be pitched later. You know,

Mike Meiers 11:58
it's interesting with those briefs to feel like you're describing ex girlfriends where I'm just like, I don't know what you want. I don't know what you want. For me. You're describing somebody that doesn't exist. And I'm trying to give you something. But it's yeah, you're not even sure what you want. I don't think this can work. Right, right. But I'll take this information. And I'll just learn from it. And I'll do better.

Josh Doyle 12:22
Right. But I love that. And I

Mike Meiers 12:26
think, you know, the first question for a lot of people is, you know, we're talking about deciphering briefs. They're like, one of the most, I think some of the core basic questions when people are getting into this. They're like, how do I get a Brit? Where do I get these briefs? Where it because that's, you know, they think that's the important question sometimes, like, where do I get them. And I'm like, actually, before you get a brief, just kind of research a little bit what you want, and what you want to do and what your strengths are, and go to something like a tune, find, and start seeing where those are placed. Because it's almost like, you can see the end result of a brief you can send, see the end result of like, where it landed, what scene it was used, what was the title? And sometimes you'll see, like, genres that are all over the place where you're just like, this makes no sense. Or you'll see like consistent patterns.

Josh Doyle 13:15
Yeah, yeah, exactly. That's a great point. Like there is an art and an entire discussion that we could have about like how a brief is written, the, you know, the, the way that they describe things and you know, different terms that they use in there. But that really isn't the end all be all. And that's not really where I would start. There was somebody there was like a famous like, publisher, or producer or something like that. That said, like, somebody asked him, like, how do you write a hit song or something like that? And they said, like, all the answers are on the radio, like, all the hit songs are on the radio, just go listen. And the same thing is kind of true for a sync, like, what songs are being used in sync, like, go watch a TV show, like, go to two and find and listen to a bunch of songs that are being synced? And deconstruct as much as possible from that information, like, yeah, analyze the scene, analyze the song, analyze the motional message, like, are they complementing each other? Are they playing off of each other? Is the song being used ironically, you know, all that kind of stuff? All those answers are right there. And that's, that's a lot more valuable, I think, then, then, you know, just I need to get a brief so like, all the answers are gonna be in the brief. They're not.

Mike Meiers 14:32
Because even if it's kind of like dog catcher in the car, if they get it, it's like, what do I do with it? It's just like, I got it now. And it's just like, I'm not sure because, you know, if I got a brief probably at the beginning, I'd be like, spinning my wheels. Like, you know, I'd have no idea what to do with it. But let's say you get to that point. So you make a connection. Like you go to a conference, you meet a supervisor and they like you and they're like, hey, just give me your email and i'll start sending you stuff because you know, I think you you have potential when you get something that's just grabbing a scene and you know, just as you said, it's describing a scene, some emotion, there's maybe one or two references, let's say you get a brief, and it's saying that it's for a Netflix trailer coming up. And it's a new one that's kind of a murder mystery. And they want a retro feel to it. But with contemporary elements, how would you interpret like that, like, you know, out of all of that, what's important,

Josh Doyle 15:28
I mean, all of those things have like, really interesting and relevant information. So the fact that it's a promo means that it's going to be edited in a certain way. So if this is like, if, like, if they said, it's ending credits for film, then that means that they need like more of a slow burn of an ending credit, you know, unless they give other instructions, but you can, like really develop your idea of really good at Moody. And, you know, the story's already been told, you're kind of like setting, you know, this is like the the end credits, so you can really do whatever if it's a promo or a trailer, they're gonna really be like cutting scenes and like emotional hit points and stuff like that. So you want to be composing your track in a way that has more kind of like dynamic moments and crescendos and things like that transitions. So like, there's that the murder mystery, you know, like, there's that there's a certain sound that that might go, there's gonna be more tension in the way that you write the song?

Mike Meiers 16:27
Can we unpack what you mean tension? Because maybe somebody's like, well, what does tension sound like, you know, what is it? What is what is tension sound like to you?

Josh Doyle 16:35
Man? That's, I mean, that's a great question. I mean, you can get into like the theory of a, you know, of, like, when you get like a chord progression of like, you know, 145, and then resolves back to one and like, that kind of go in, you know, like, releases the tension in the way that you compose your chords and your melodies and stuff like that. That's a great question. Like, how do you how do you, like, verbalize, like, what is tension? I think this is like, you know, going through these exercises of, like, looking at murder mystery scenes, and listening to the music that they use, like, you have to kind of educate yourself. And it's, it does become intuitive, like, you have to get a feeling of, I don't know, it's the same thing of like, you know, you walk into your into your living room and your parents are having a conversation. Is there tension? Is there tension in the way that they're talking to each other, you just know, you can hear the tones you can hear the the language that's being used,

Mike Meiers 17:33
the inflections, all those things, the effect date, what where this is going. So it's like, that's what I think is really, you know, can also be like, stop people sometimes from going to a break, because they're like, what do they mean tension, but I like how, you know, some of those ideas of, quote, not resolving a progression, and going slow and building it and, you know, dark and, you know, dark south, maybe not so bright and cheery sounds, because then that is too optimistic, or that feels hopeful. Do we want to give a feeling of like, Doom and just like, you know, more risers and hits? And just as you said, you know, if it's the trailer, then it's like, okay, then there are these cut offs. There are these like, sometimes sharp, sometimes they're not sharp, so have a varied amount of like, transitions. Then when they say, retro, what is retro mean? It's just like, are we talking like, you know, like Motown retro? Or it's like, are we going for the Gap Band? Are we like, what's retro?

Josh Doyle 18:31
So one of the things that I like to do with that, oh, and then just kind of taking a step back, I'll get to the retro thing. And it's, like, you know, the murder mystery. Like, you could look at those two words and be like, how much How mysterious do I want to go? How murder? Dark? Do I want to go? Yeah, right. Because you could, you could, there's definitely, you could lean into either one you could get into like murder, like somebody's like, that's the scene that you're, you're going after something that's like very, yeah, or you could have a mystery like, Ooh, what's what's going on? Like, I don't understand that kind of thing. Alright, so like getting to the retro thing. And especially when they say like modern retro, yeah, the thing that I like to do is break it up into frequencies, or members of the band. Like if I'm imagining whatever song I'm writing on the stage, like, who in the band is are the retro players and who's bringing the modern? Yeah, and a lot of times I'll like to make the the low end more modern and the mids and highs, more retro. So I'll have like maybe 808 kicks and synth bass. And then, you know, kind of vintage horns and you know, kind of funky electric guitars or something like that. Just yeah,

Mike Meiers 19:49
that is a great way of breaking it down. Like if you had that band just right there who would be your like old school vintage players. They're like you're creating this band in your mind being like, okay, But like the vintage players next to like that 808 kick drum and, and it's just like, that is such an interesting way of thinking. And it just hit me even though I made this up. I was like, Oh yeah, like, you know, murder mystery. They didn't say horror, because that's the realm in itself because murder mystery implies, you know, Murder on the Orient Express is like a murder mystery. And that's a little quirky. So it's like quirky kind of strings, but maybe, you know, you could have that that modern kick drum but like, but then it has like some quirkiness at the same time, like, scream is a horror, Halloween, that's a horse. So that's a different type of like, it like intense. So it's like, maybe murder mystery is more. They want some elements of a quirky, but they didn't say quirky, but it needs to have like maybe some strings that are a little bit more like, pluck staccato, but mixed with, like things that have maybe started. This is where it's like, we could spend time just talking about this, and the different options that we could use.

Josh Doyle 21:06
Yeah, that's a great point. That's a that a lot of people see murder mystery, and they get it confused with horror. And this is where, you know, honestly, if I had any kind of relationship if I mean, if this was like an anonymous brief, which, you know, sometimes a lot of them are but if I had any kind of relationship or any kind of hint as to who the director might be, sometimes they'll say like, you know, director from you know, these movies Yeah, is now making a new one, you know, and you can kind of get so I would go in like IMDB like what? What other stuff is have they done? Most likely? This isn't their first murder mystery. And so I would go and see like, did they previously direct scream? Are they now like coming from a scream perspective into like a murder mystery, which means that it might be a little bit more intense. Or I don't know scream was kind of a comedy but wasn't it? No scream or no,

Mike Meiers 21:57
that would? I think scream is scream is the horror that was there. Screen one screen two. I think what you're thinking is I think the Wayne's brothers then did a movie.

Josh Doyle 22:09
That's the one I saw. I never saw the original. I definitely want to be figuring that out before you write your song.

Mike Meiers 22:17
Oh, I think it was like not another teen movie. That's what it was. Yeah. And so it just kind of does a parody on screen. Yeah, that's

Josh Doyle 22:24
so fun. All right. All right. So you definitely don't want to get those confused. But anyway, like doing the research on who is where this is coming from what their previous thing then, you know, they can kind of inform where you think this one might goes? Yeah, yeah. Doing films is is difficult. That's that's a, like anybody who like really pitches specifically for films. That's, that's a harder one for me. Because the there it's not like a TV series, we can go back to season two or three and see all the track you know, the path and the music that they've used films are like these one off things. And even if it is like a part two, like a sequel, a lot of times they might change their sound because they don't want to make the exact same movie again. You know what,

Mike Meiers 23:12
and it's funny because when you when you talk about that it is that's kind of the benefit of sometimes doing starting off at the ground floor when you're when you're starting out in the sink is especially for those type of burritos low. I guess the low hanging fruit of never ending reality shows that are just a plethora. So whether it's, you know, an underscore something that is with vocals, like Teen Mom, which, you know, shout out to Mom, it's been, it's been good to me. It's been it's been great like Teen Mom, Teen Mom, two Teen Mom, og 16 and pregnant. And there's another one, I think it's like a teen mom, where they actually just have teen moms watch teen mom, and they call on Teen Mom. It's a commentary, but like, you know, those type of shows, even though it's easy to write it off and be like, Oh, I don't need a brief for that I'm pretty. There needs to be you know, they pick certain songs, certain things that still have a formula, you know, I've gotten a brief where it's just like, you know, it's maybe not so much music centric, but lyrical centric. So what about those type of briefs? Where they emphasize certain words, you know, they looking for this type, you know, looking for this phrase, you know, this is where someone may be new is like, cool. I'm just gonna make that course. Good time. Good time. Good time. Good time. Good time. Go.

Josh Doyle 24:35
Yeah, that that's another man. These are great, great questions, great things to think about. So

Mike Meiers 24:40
like I prepped for this. It's like I

Josh Doyle 24:42
knew I was gonna be here. I mean, I just randomly knocked on your door and you're like, yeah, so that that is something that that a lot of people get wrong, especially when they're trying to pitch like a song. They've already written like five years ago. And you know, like, you know if it's good time, like, oh, I said good time once in like the end of my bridge like right before, like, there's like, half a second, that is irrelevant. And everything else in the song is like not about good time at all. Yeah. And that happens so many times like, no, that's not what they're, they're not going to use your half a second where you said good time here, they need like an entire, at least 30 seconds, or a solid chorus that is capturing this theme of good time. Like it's, I mean, sometimes they really do want that lyric. But a lot of times they will say, you know, we want something with good time in it, or something similar, you know, like it can be. And that's really again, like they're going after this vibe, they need it to capture the good time essence.

Mike Meiers 25:52
It's like you looked into that, and you were like, Yeah, I know what they're saying. But here's what they actually mean. So it's like, again, those two opposite ends of the pendulum. Someone's just like, oh my god, at the end of that phrase, we'll just cut off the word where I say no good time, but we'll just leave that no off. And we'll have a good time. But meanwhile, it's like, it's all the feel is so not a good time. It's like this is awful. And then you have the opposite end. That's to like good time, good time, good time. And it's good. Good time, good debt. And it's good. Yeah. And the vibe feels like so bad. It just is not, it's slapped together. Like they were trying too hard. And it just doesn't work.

Josh Doyle 26:32
Unless the brief is like super specific. Like, we want it to be good time. Nothing else. If you send us any other word other than the word good and time, we're gonna burn your house down, you know, I will generally never write exactly what they're asking for, for a couple of reasons. One, because everybody else is going to be writing good time, good time, good time. And they're gonna get inundated with those songs. Oh, okay. And so if they want a good time song, they're gonna get plenty of them. I am going to be the guy that's to the left, and giving them something interesting. And so I'm going to like, think of like, I'm not going to tell them go have a good time, I'm going to show them how to have a good time. And that's always been my, the way that I can take these these themes that are difficult to write and not make them sound cheesy, because like when you're hanging out with your friends, nobody ever says, Hey, guys, let's go have a good time. You know, this isn't Leave It to Beaver or happy days. So I'm always trying to think like,

Mike Meiers 27:39
kids aren't saying that anymore. Kids are?

Josh Doyle 27:41
No, man.

Mike Meiers 27:42
Let's get a SAS gorilla and have a good time down down at the soda fountain.

Hey, it's Mike, I just want to jump in the middle of this episode. Let me guess You are a songwriter that is never short of ideas. But you've got a million voice memos. You've got them all categorized there. Tons of voice memos. Well, let me tell you something right now. You want to level up your game. But I'm going to be honest, those voice memos, you can't show those. What you need is a better a better recording a better version. That means you have to break open your door. So whether it's logic, whether it's Pro Tools, whether it's FL studios, whether it's Ableton, here's the thing. It's overwhelming. It's confusing, it's, it's daunting, it's it's so crippling. That's why Madeline Finn, one of our coaches has a free series, dot one on one. So all you got to do is go to songwriting for guitar.com. And you're going to scroll down to our free resources, and you're going to see da 121, you're going to click it you're going to sign up. And she's going to take you through the process of how to record a fantastic guitar vocal with with minimal stress, it's gonna sound way better than your voice memo, that you feel great that you can show off to a producer, you could show off to a publisher, you could show off to your co writer, you can convey your ideas much more effectively with a quality recording. So song rank for guitar.com, scroll down to our free resources section and sign up for da one on one.

And what's interesting to me of how you frame this, you immediately thought how can I separate myself from those because I'm they're gonna get inundated. You're right, they're gonna get inundated with people that are going to be like, oh, you know, good time, good time and 40 million songs that are all gonna say good time. But how can you move that reminds me. So it's this book, it's blue, blue ocean strategy. And basically the concept is, you could go to the red waters and the red water is full of blood because people are doing the same thing and they're going after each other. And so that's an example of like, everybody's writing good time. Good time, but Josh is Like how can I think out of the box and do something completely different still in the vibe of what they want, but out of the, you know, hundreds, they're going to get this a good time, here's mine. That's the opposite of not saying good time. But still, the vibe in the field is like, this feels this does feel like it's a good time, you're using the blue ocean strategy of like, I'm going to go into the waters where no one else is going. And that's going to be the thing that makes me stand out. And I'm like, damn, like, not only are you deciphering it, but you're also thinking in advance, how can I separate myself from the masses that are going to just do this? Like, they're not thinking about it? They're just like data data. And probably their production is also going to sound like that, because they're not really thinking of how can I make this standout? And to me, that's also thinking long term, because you're putting this time and energy into a song, that you're not thinking, Could this be one time that this has a lifespan, but like, I want this to have multiple placement and not just like this one instance, where everybody's in that short term mindset of like, get it, but it can't be used anywhere else.

Josh Doyle 31:10
Yeah, absolutely. Like I want these are these songs are. I mean, this is a whole other conversation. But these songs are like many investments, for me their investments of time, their investments of money, and I want them to have a long life, I want them to at least have a relevance of five years. That's kind of my goal. Oh,

Mike Meiers 31:30
okay. So I liked that, that you put a time to that. Yeah, I

Josh Doyle 31:33
had heard that somewhere where like, you know, like the, you know, how, like the the ukulele stomp clap thing kind of had a moment for it. Yeah, right. Yeah, and finger snaps and all that. That had like, that was like 2010 2015. And it's still like, occasionally gets used. Like, there's an artist on three theory that just got one place with Walmart. And it was like a kind of a happy go lucky ukulele kind of thing. But generally, like, that's, they had their that was a time when like, that was happening all the time. And then the whole, like, swagger stomp clap thing. Oh, yeah. Oh,

Mike Meiers 32:10
yeah. It's just a very like, that was a very specific pure is like that picked up where the ukulele Allah left on a day and then carried and now it's kind of like, trailing again, unless it's like, time specific. Like, quick little underscore of something that's so like, low paying, like, okay, cool. That's gonna be like a $40 placement.

Josh Doyle 32:32
Yeah, yeah. So there, yeah, these, these genres and, and things that are happening now aren't going to be happening five years from now it's gonna, it's going to transition into something else. So, but I do want the, you know, staying on the lyrical theme, like, I want the theme to be kind of universal and applicable to other scenarios. So like, you know, what just popped in my head. There's an artist on the three theory roster, the band's called the BGP, and they've got a song called every day and the hook is I want to do this every day. And it's such a great song. But that kind of could work for the good time. Yeah. It's like, that's another way of saying, like, you know, I want to have a good time. I want to do this every day. Those are basically saying the same thing.

Mike Meiers 33:20
I love that because you're also the first thing you said, You didn't just tell me about the lyrical content, you were like, It's a good song. And I think that's the other thing that people are missing. They're so sometimes into the brief, that they're, that they're trying to be so robotic with the movement, the vibe and the feel of the song and also to these things. And we've mentioned this in podcast before, we already talked about vibe and feel, which is sometimes so like, what does that mean? Like, we can't, there's no plugin, that's just vibe, feel it, we can't pull that up. It's like this. instinctual. You know, like, oh, that's feels really good. Or we know just as human beings like, it feels off. That feels weird. Like, what does that mean? But you said, that's a good, that's a great song. That's the element that people when they get sewn to the brief miss, like, hey, don't forget, this is a song. Right? You got to listen to it. You want to listen to it? Right?

Josh Doyle 34:20
Yeah, you're sending this to other human beings who are huge music fans, like Yeah, music scene, but you will never meet a bigger music fan than a music supervisor. And so if you send them bad songs, even if it hits the, the target, you know, it checks all the boxes. If it's a bad song, if it's poorly written out of tune, they're just not gonna they're not going to put their own reputation on the line. If it's a bad song, you know, to forward it on to the director or whoever their client is

Mike Meiers 34:52
that, you know, again, you're hitting these good points where I'm like, you because you're thinking of a scenario like Okay, imagine yours. On and they get in their hands. Are they excited about MIT? I'm gonna send this are they going to be like, hey, Director, I want you to hear this one. Good time. Good time. Everything's good. Good time. Good time. Go go go. Yeah. And

Josh Doyle 35:12
no director is gonna fire him.

Mike Meiers 35:14
No, it is because it's just like, is this a song that that they would send that they would also their reputation is tied to my song and they are okay with that. Oh, that's heavy. That's a different weight. Now.

Josh Doyle 35:27
It's like, yeah, it's a big responsibility for us as like songwriters like we are. We are giving them something that is tied to their reputation.

Mike Meiers 35:36
Wow. Yeah. I don't know why I didn't think of that. But I'm like, I'm literally like, yeah, because they are. They are huge music fans, like they have their genres that they love, and they can talk about it. They can, they can talk about, you know, some of them are musicians themselves. And they're gearheads and they're, so they're constantly immersed in that world, they love to champion great songs. They don't like to champion songs that they don't believe in. Yeah. So that that adds another element to where it's like, even if you think oh, yeah, it's hitting the mark, do you think they would really love it and want to just like, pitch it for no end? Like, you know, even if it doesn't get picked up, they're gonna be like, Hey, don't worry, I'm going to keep this in my catalog. I'm going to pitch this because I love this song. That's kind of also another good scenario, even if it doesn't get used for that particular brief. Do they love it enough? They're like, hey, that's okay. I'm, I'm gonna pitch the song because this is really good. I believe that. Yeah. Like, I think of like Maddie, like when I you know, when we did like the guardhouse stuff, I remember stay calm and be like, I love her voice and anything that she that she's, like, Can Maddie like, was a huge, just like, I'm going to champion like, I love her. Like, she's so excited about it. I'm like, awesome. There's something about that.

Josh Doyle 36:56
Yeah, absolutely. And that's what I'm, that's what I'm going after, like I want. I don't know, there's a thing that happened for me, like I, you know, when I first started, I was trying with things I was trying to learn to read briefs understand what they were going, like all the dynamics, and I was writing songs that weren't great. But as soon as, as soon as I kind of got the pieces in place of where it made sense for me. And the, the angles that I wanted to come at it from that felt that was authentic, there was something that like clicked and I could immediately be like, This is a song I'm super proud of, I would want to release this and put my own maiden name on it. And it works for this brief. And, and and like it could work for all these things. Instead of it being like, because early on, it would be like, you know, I would write this, like, I would write my own like Good times. Good times. Good times. I'd be like, this is awful. But it says good times. So I'm gonna pitch it. You know, I did what they said. It doesn't work.

Mike Meiers 37:58
i What was it? Like? I think it was the first it was one of the first classes we did, they sent out something really quick. And I had no songs, but I had an old pop punk band. And I was like, and I just sent like, so that was not even close to like, and nothing. And I was like, That was a great song. What? But to me great song was I already had a song. That was all it meant to me was just like, I happened to have it. But to me what you're saying is, okay, you are so excited about the song that you would tie your name to? You would do I don't think a lot of people would. And I think that's the catch. They're just like, oh, no, that's the where you hear it? Well, I've got this would be great for sync. And I'm like, I was shudder when I hear that. I'm like, oh, what does that mean? And I'm like, What do you mean? Oh, you mean, you happen to have a song that you can't do anything with? And you want to throw it at the wall and see if it gets placed? Yeah, no. Right. It's like, it's not gonna happen because I would not listen to that.

Josh Doyle 39:03
Whenever I hear somebody say I've got a song that's great for sync. It immediately makes me think that they've written a jingle that they've they've like written a like, a song about Huggies diapers. And they're like, I've got herkes Huggies or mine, you know, whatever. Like, I love hugging my Huggies and yeah, and they think they've written a great song for singing

Mike Meiers 39:29
Huggies. Are you listening? Is that right? Yeah.

Josh Doyle 39:32
Copy, right. Yeah. And that's just not how it works. No, you can't send that song to Huggies. First of all, Huggies doesn't care. They don't. They don't handle their own music. If you tried sending it to the ad agency, they've already planned their marketing. It just doesn't work. You can't just if they want a jingle, they're gonna hire somebody to write a jingle. They're not going to take some pre existing song. There was

Mike Meiers 39:59
a time I'm worried that was a thing. Like, like, and that's the Yeah. And I think it's people's view of, you know, it's like almost like their mind with this sort of realm. Has there been an update? And if not, they're still running on this old software of like, oh, that's the jingle and it works. That's what jingles are, you know, like, you know, my Coke, shave the world of coke, everybody. There was a point where yeah, that was. That was that was a thing. Yeah, it's changed drastically. And if you've not updated your mind with what's working right now, and you're running on this old software of like, that's a jingle. Like I do get that a lot where it's, I don't know, do you get that too? When you say you do music for TV? And they're like, oh, jingles and you're like, Well, it's, it's not like jingles at all. And they're like, Oh, you you write jingles. You do little, little things. And little, it's like, actually, no, it's not little things in little like little snippets, like songs and put out Yeah, and it's a lot more of that than like,

Josh Doyle 41:02
doo doo doo doo doo doo doo. Hey, yeah, right, right. Yeah, it's really difficult to explain to people like what we're earliest what I do, like, I'm, I'm writing real songs that just happened to get used in sync. You know, that's, that's the best way that I can. I can do I'm not writing like sync songs. I'm not writing jingles. I'm writing real songs with real artists, who a lot of times are like touring artists, like they're, you know, yeah, they're legitimate. And we're just guiding. I'm just making sure that this song doesn't drop any F bombs and say that I hate corporate America. Other than that, you know, like, it's gonna be sync friendly.

Mike Meiers 41:43
I think that was a big game changer. For me. It was like I started doing kind of like the fake sink at first, where it was just like, it was just because it was like, oh, yeah, this can work. And I was like, oh, wait a minute. Oh, it's just like, No, I wouldn't listen to this. Right. And why would I? Why would I think it's that time thing? Why would I invest my time into something that won't work? That is not, but if I pair with people that I love, and I think Man, they've got a creek, and they're also doing the thing? Like, I'd be like, Look there, you know, this is a legitimate personal legitimate. That's an also to that's the thing. Supervisors loved champion. They don't want to champion good time. Go Go funtime bad. I don't know. Yeah, but that's like, totally not real. But like, Oh, this is, you know, this is legitimately an artist that has a great body of work. And they happen to have music that works for this, which is awesome.

Josh Doyle 42:45
Yeah. And if you think of all the bands that have become like sync darlings, like you think like, Imagine Dragons had like, a great run a years like where they're all you know, they were just on everything. The Black Keys, you know, basically just all these bands. I don't think any of them ever cared about sync, or maybe even more aware of it. They just happen to write songs that worked really well for it. And then you've got you think about this, like, you think about other artists who are have just blown up like Billy Eilish, I have heard some of her stuff in sync. But she's not like become like a sync darling. Her music isn't great for it. She, I mean, I love her. But she's just she happens to write songs that aren't great for sync.

Mike Meiers 43:31
That's a really good point. Because then people will be like, I do stuff like Billy. It's like, that's awesome. Is there a need for it? Right now? Is there a need? And it's just like, that's interesting.

Josh Doyle 43:43
What was interesting is one of the sinks that I did hear of Billy Eilish was bad guy. And it was the instrumental and it was used in a Walmart commercial. And it was so weird. It was so weird to hear like the dirt. Doo doo doo doo doo doo. Yeah. Under like, like Walmart. Voiceover of like, today at Walmart family friendly deals. And like, I'm like, they are totally just trying to like, associate themselves with like, whatever the cool new thing was, it was just like the weirdest sync I've

Mike Meiers 44:16
that is bizarre don't do because it's just like, yeah, it's coming to Walmart. It's

Josh Doyle 44:21
a murder mystery. It's a murder mystery at Walmart.

Mike Meiers 44:25
But just in this discussion of how we broken down, there's so much to decipher within a brief, like, there's so many ways to unpack and it's almost like the best way to do this is almost reverse roles. Pretend you're the music supervisor. Pretend you're the person there with a brief and detach yourself for a moment that you're not writing or creating music. But just in your mind. What songs that are out there would you pick? What songs would you associate your name with and your reputation with that you would pitch Not a writer, but just like to just, you know, just cosplay for a second, like your music supervisor, you are going to be there. And you're going to, you know, these are the songs that you would pitch and walk. Can you give me a reason why this works?

Josh Doyle 45:14
Yeah, that's a great exercise.

Mike Meiers 45:17
I think people need to do that consistently. Like, if they did that for an entire year, or like two years, I think not only would their deciphering get better, but the songs they would then write would hit the mark more, be way more authentic. And they would see success.

Josh Doyle 45:35
Yeah. Because you really have to think about I mean, like, you know, no matter how much somebody loves the Eagles, like, you're not going to pick your, your, your favorite band all the time, or maybe ever. Like, I don't know how many times I've heard music supervisors say I love this band, or they're my favorite. And I can never pitch them for anything that I'm working on. They just, they're just not right. You know, so you have to, like, separate yourself from from that. And just you have to come up with strong arguments of like, yes, this song captures the thing that is happening in this scene. And it's a great exercise and really helps your own songwriting. I think

Mike Meiers 46:14
I, if people did this, especially if they're starting out, or if they've been doing this, and nothing's happened. And everything's been like, it's just that and they feel like, oh, maybe I'm missing the mark. This is the best thing to do is yeah, just detach yourself, and to really go in and find what what songs would you pitch and why would you pitch them? Probably won't pick the Eagles? You probably wouldn't, because it's like, as much as I love it. It's just this work if your income. Let's say you're a supervisor dependent on that, once you choose that, or would you be like, You know what, I'm going to be honest. I'm going to choose this because this works way better. To me, that would be that would be a game changer for so many people.

Josh Doyle 46:59
Yeah, I think that's yeah, absolutely. That's, that's great.

Mike Meiers 47:02
Well, Josh, this was I'm sure we can keep on going well, we'll just have to pick another one. You'll get another merit badge, you're gonna get like another you're gonna get at least 12 at this point. Just like, just like super stellar. Just like Good, good. Good time. So we'll name

Josh Doyle 47:16
good. That's gonna be my one for today. Good. Good. Good times.

Mike Meiers 47:20
Awesome, Josh. Thanks for being here.

Josh Doyle 47:22
Absolutely. Thanks for having me.

Mike Meiers 47:29
And that does it for this week's episode. Hey, if you enjoyed this episode, and any of our previous episodes, and you haven't given us a review on Apple podcast yet, can you just take a moment right now scroll down, give us a five star review and talk about your favorite episode and share an episode with a songwriting friend that you think would benefit from the things that we've shared. And if you have thank you so much, you're the reason why we keep on putting out amazing episodes like this one, and the one you'll hear next week, and like all of them, they were edited produced by Chris with dahlias. I'm Mike Myers. Thanks for listening.

Transcribed by https://otter.ai