Music Supervisor Profile // Kat Olsen

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Considering that the art of collaboration is such a personal and human process, we feel that it's important to put a face to the name of our music supervisors. Continuing with our series of profiles, we want to officially introduce you to Kat Olsen.

Kat brings a unique perspective to Marmoset, being equal parts creator and curator of music at the same time. Not only does she come with a background in film, she also shreds in her band The Vandies (also on the roster). We asked her a few questions...

What is your philosophy of music supervision?

I studied film, specifically editing, and always thought I would go into editing. I spent so many hours pouring over song options - it was typically the last thing I did. After pulling clips, making cuts and getting a rough edit in place, picking a track was such a "oh boy... here we go" moment. I wish I'd had an awesome option like Marmoset.

The bottom line is: Music should be fun. Everyone at Marmoset loves music, our artists love music and our filmmakers love the music we find for them. I just want to put awesome music in awesome projects - it's a win win for the filmmakers and the musicians. And I have the great job of connecting those two awesome creative parties. Win for me as well!


What does a successful music + film collaboration look/sound like?

When music works it makes the hair on the back of your neck prick up. It causes your heart to beat a bit faster. It makes you feel the moment in the film as if you're right there.  The music tells you exactly what to feel during that part of the film. You may be watching the story in the warm safety of your living room, but when that perfect score begins, you're right there in the scene. 

I really love how "Marie Antoinette" interacts with the soundtrack. The music works so well that you totally forget the song was written 200 years after when the movie is set. The song captures the feelings in the scene so well. It doesn't matter that the characters are in the 1780s and the track is from the 1980s - the sentiment is the same. 

There's also a scene in "Almost Famous" that I love - it is right after a big falling out, where Penny Lane realizes her rock star lover will never love her back. She has a melt down, over doses on quaaludes and William saves her.  While he's with her, he confesses that he loves her. When this clip begins, Penny is still the facade of Penny Lane - jovial, mouthing along with the stewardess. But as the song continues, she suddenly remembers the night before and realizes that William is the only person from this whole experience that actually cares for her. The song helps this realization so much - without the track, this scene would seem a bit silly. She's getting emotional on a plane while he's running along and waving... but with the track, it's so powerful and emotional. I love this movie in general for it's use of music, but this scene especially


As a musician, how do feel this impacts your work at Marmoset?

The most obvious way: I'm in the musicians shoes. I know how important and significant each placement can be. When one of our tracks was picked, my whole band got together to watch the spot - We were so honored that someone felt our track was the right fit for their piece. As a filmmaker and a musician I appreciate the work both sides put into their material - because I've also done that. 

Posted on July 25, 2014 and filed under Marmoset.