Adam Young, also known as Owl City which is his pop music alter ego, has decided to try something new and outside of the realm of pop. He has been inspired by the music in film since he was 16. “Before anything on the radio or friends’ music, it was film music,” he says about his original inspiration for learning to create music. He has a project going, a goal, to write a film score every month for a year. He will be releasing one 25-30 minute film score based on different historical events that inspire him. Although he hasn’t done work like this before, he does have some experience creating music for movies. He wrote the theme for Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole as well as music for Wreck-It Ralph.
Already, he has come out with his first two scores for his year-long project. The first score, which came out February 1, was for Apollo 11. “[Apollo 11] grabbed my imagination. Everything I’ve known has been based here on earth and here are these three other people that got in space suits and explored [the moon],” he says about his inspiration for his first film score.
His score for the month of March was inspired by the RMS Titanic. He was inspired by the score for the 1997 film classic, but he says, “I tried to make sure that whatever I was doing would stand alone and not be too influenced by Horner’s amazing score.”
Some of the other historical events that he is inspired to make a score about include Charles Lindbergh’s transatlantic flight, the California Gold Rush, and Lincoln’s assassination.
Although he urges to his fans that Owl City is not over, he also feels that he needs a bit of a break from his comfort zone, saying that “part of the reason for this endeavor is to give me a little bit of space and distance from the pop music space.” His endeavor into his passions was fortuitously timed as he left Republic Records after releasing Mobile Orchestra last July. He is enjoying the break, joking that “this is kind of a load off my shoulders to not worry about rhyming,” as he talks about how the process of writing film scores feels, “a lot faster for me than music with lyrics.” However, he also talks about how he would love to work with an actual orchestra, as, “all the actual sounds are sample based,” since he has been working on this project from his home in Minnesota.
All of his scores will be available for streaming on his website for the project and on Spotify. He will also have limited edition movie posters for his scores which are created by James R. Eads. His creations are great so far, but his fan base looks forward to hearing more of his stuff.