A long-time musician, singer and passionate music-lover, we’re stoked to welcome Madeline Dowling to the Marmoset team as a Music Supervisor. Madeline comes to Portland with a plethora of musical knowledge, after time spent in LA and Chicago, where she supervised work for agencies like McGarryBowen, Chop Shop and Tinopolis. Madeline’s extensive experience in advertising and TV supervision includes work with clients like Disney, Sears and Pizza Hut (to name only a few) and on shows such as Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal and How To Get Away With Murder. Add to that her intense love for Deerhunter and custom glitter graphics, and we couldn’t be more excited to have her on board.
We chatted with Madeline about her past experience in the music industry, her process when pulling music for a search and her take on “guilty pleasures.” Check out her responses below, and if you see her around, make sure to say hello!
Tell us about your past experience. Did you always know that a career in music supervision was the path you wanted to take or was it something you learned later on? If so, what helped you realize this?
MD: I knew pretty early on that I wanted to work in music. I jumped around from instrument to instrument and was involved heavily in choir through elementary and high school. I did eight internships during my undergrad covering a range of musical capacities -- Public Relations, Concert Promotion, Booking, etc. My final internship was with the Chicago office of the Grammys where I met Bonny Dolan of Comma Music. It was Bonny who suggested I apply for the music supervisor/producer job at McGarryBowen.
What’s your favorite task/duty/etc about music supervision? (i.e., what gets you excited to go into work every day?)
MD: The best part of being a music supervisor is when the stars align and a song I personally love is also perfect for a scene or spot. It's rare that it happens since every search requires finding a needle in a haystack -- for a song to be right it needs to be so much more than "just a great song."
Do you have any weird processes/habits you find yourself going through when working on a project? If so, do you remember when and how these developed?
MD: I tag a lot of my music library with colorful and specific language -- both my parents are writers! Something I often do is create a sort of word cloud with descriptors and vibe-appropriate-bands to really flesh out what qualities in a song I'm going to be hunting down both within my personal library of music and the world of music-at-large.
What’s one past project that you’re most proud of? Why?
MD: I worked on the 2015 JC Penney holiday campaign and got to place one of my favorite bands, Sleepwalkers. It's really a magic moment when a band I'm so personally passionate can partner with a huge national brand for the mutual benefit of both parties.
What are your top 5 albums so far from 2016?
MD: Listed in no particular order and I couldn't pick just five!
Mitski -- Puberty 2
Whitney -- Light Upon The Lake
Jamila Woods -- HEAVN
Golden Daze -- Golden Daze
Car Seat Headrest -- Teens of Denial
Chance The Rapper -- Coloring Book
If you could dream up any band, what would it sound like? What genre would it be? What would the band name be?
MD: I love bands and artists that don't take themselves too seriously. I love a band with excellent between-song-banter. I guess I just want a band made of stand-up comedians who play gritty garage rock with smart and straightforward lyrics.
What is your spirit animal?
MD: My spirit animal is whatever animal loves the internet the most. Human animal?
If you could have one superpower, but you had to keep it a secret, what would it be?
MD: I can't think of one but I love the idea of a genie who requires an NDA.
What one single album has had the biggest influence on you? Why?
MD: Cryptograms by Deerhunter totally changed my life. I saw them play this record live when I was 17 and the rabbit hole it lead me down was deep and diverse. It really taught me that musical taste didn't need to be so black and white -- that I could be equally inspired by pop music and more avant garde music and I didn't need to be ashamed of liking Kelly Clarkson while also loving Pylon. Since then, when people ask me what my guilty musical pleasures are I tell them I don't feel guilty about any of the music I enjoy.