We are sharing our recent interview with musician, producer and composer Ignacio Zas.
Twist Online : First of all please introduce yourself to our readers.
Ignacio Zas : Hello! My name is Ignacio Zas, I’m a professional musician, and work as a Producer and Composer, mostly making music for advertising. I’m originally from Uruguay and moved to Los Angeles, California 5 years ago to attend Musicians Institute. After graduating I was lucky enough to find work in the music industry and that’s how my journey began.
Twist Online : Who or what inspired you to get into the music industry?
Ignacio Zas : There were several things but if I’m completely honest, the first thing to ever make me go “I want to be a musician” was the movie School Of Rock. I watched it with my friends when I was 10 and thought it was the coolest thing ever. I really got into each and every one of the bands that was on the soundtrack from that movie. That’s actually how I discovered Led Zeppelin. So you could say that’s what ignited the spark, then my obsession with music and sound would completely take over.
There were also many records and bands that made me feel like I just had to chase those sounds. I had to know how they were made and I had to figure out how to make some noise myself. It’s hard to explain but music became a driving force in my life.
Twist Online : You specialize in making music for advertising, tell us more about that?
Ignacio Zas : I had always been fascinated with the idea of writing music to picture, but as I was very busy playing with bands and either recording or playing live with Space Lemon I didn’t have the time to do it as much. That was until the opportunity to score some short films came along and I got to take a crack at it. I immediately fell in love with it. I dove head first and found that there was a lot to discover.
I was lucky enough to become an in house Producer/Composer at South Music and Sound Design and that’s how I started in the world of ad music.
I guess the biggest change for me, besides how dynamic of a work environment it is, was how fast we are expected to deliver tracks. We’ll usually have 3 days to write a couple of tracks, and I’ve actually worked on jobs that had turn arounds that were less than 24 hours. Takes some getting used to!
Twist Online : What have you published recently?
Ignacio Zas : Off the top of my head some of our most recent work includes music we did for Hyper X, Peroni, Covergirl and McDonald’s. All spots were incredibly fun to work on.
Twist Online : You went from “Space Lemon” to composing and producing for advertising, there must be a huge difference.
Ignacio Zas : There is. Sometimes I get to go back and write music that is sort of in the style of what I wrote with Space Lemon, but it’s not the norm.
I find myself writing pop one day, something orchestral with electronic elements the next day and something quirky and weird the next. It’s an ever changing stream of genres, you never know what you’re going to have to write, and I find that to be quite thrilling.
The way I work has changed now as well, I now write and produce most of the music by myself. With Space Lemon I had other band members to bounce ideas off of.
Twist Online : Is writing music for advertising a difficult job ?
Ignacio Zas : It can be. There’s a lot of moving parts and good communication is key. It’s important to have in mind what the director or the agencies want, there’s not always room to go off brief and do whatever you want. I personally enjoy both approaches to writing music. I don’t have a problem sticking to someone else’s idea, it’s liberating at times, but there’s moments when you’re required to take the driver’s seat and that can also be very interesting. Art is something very personal, it’s hard to always be on the same page with every creative. Knowing when to compromise is very important.
When you’re being trusted to write music for someone’s film, you’re working on something that means a lot to that person, and you have to respect that. Having said that, you shouldn’t be afraid to take some creative risks every now and then, you never know when someone might love something you thought was going to get shut down. Taking those risks doesn’t always pay off, but when it does it can be hugely rewarding.
Twist Online : What’s the best part of your job?
Ignacio Zas : I get to wake up and make a living out of making music every day. I have met and worked with incredibly talented musicians who happen to be amazing people. I am very grateful for that and do not take it for granted.
Twist Online : What’s next?
Ignacio Zas : Many things! Given the nature of my job I just can’t say what those are right now! What I can say is that I’m writing music for 2 new short films and I’m also working on a new project that has me producing and writing music in a new band. It keeps getting busier and I can’t wait to show the world what I’m working on!