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Podcast Revew: ‘Showstopper’

Why did they choose that song for this movie, anyway?

I love taking a deeper look into the song choices that are used on the soundtrack of different movies and TV shows. I always enjoy watching a movie or an episode of a TV show and thinking about how the music chosen really fits (or doesn’t) into a particular scene. I think about songs that would’ve fit better. Sometimes I’ll even hear a song and just instantly imagine a made-up scene that would accompany it perfectly.

I’ve found it to be a little difficult to find articles or interviews about why those certain songs were chosen for those exact cinematic moments. Was it a personal connection to the song? A feeling of nostalgia? Or were they able to picture the song perfectly in the scene like I have imagined up many times before?

As luck would have it, I was scrolling through the podcasts on Spotify when I stumbled upon Showstopper.

According to the description, the podcast takes one of “TV and film’s greatest hits and explores its unique soundtrack through interviews with the music supervisors, composers and talent who create it.”

As I found my way into this podcast — which is a Spotify original production — I decided to work my way from most to least recent. Let me tell you a bit about the episode entitled “mid90s – ft. Jonah Hill:”

In his interview with the podcast’s host, Xavier Jernigan, Hill says he “…use[s] music to write. I think most director’s just want to hear music they love through the emotional lens they see it through…This is the music that you hear in the film is the music that I grew up worshipping and kind of formed me as a person.”

Hill goes on to say that he wanted to portray hip-hop in a more emotional way to differ from the more often corny way it is used and viewed as in film.

This podcast will definitely be another one added to my library if that episode is any indication of its quality.

It was very cool to actually be able to hear why the songs that were the soundtrack to the film were chosen. Hill says that he uses music as the base point and writes around the music he knows wants to be in the film. That helps him escape the common method of planning and writing out the film, and basing the music choices off of certain scenes that have already been established.

If that’s thought-provoking to you, Showstopper is worth your time.

If you obsess over singers and bands, and are one of those people who make a playlist for every occasion, join CMN’s Music Journalism Course and get real-time experience, intense feedback on your writing, exposure to music industry insiders, and a great place to display build your portfolio. Get all the details on the Music Journalism Course here.

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