What Our Client Requested:
Our client was working on a special 4-Episode edition for their NHL 24⁄7 series, “Flyers Rangers: Road To The Winter Classic 2011” set to air over the Christmas / New Year holidays. They asked us to provide them with a wide range of music that covered Contemporary, Alternative and Indie Rock that could create an emotional connection between the characters being covered in the show and the audience. In previous seasons, they had used several Classic and Hard Rock tracks which worked well, but they were looking to depart from that for this season for something more refreshing - they were open to new ideas.
After studying episodes from past seasons to better understand the history and background of the franchise, we proceeded to put together a rather eclectic but relevant group of songs. We stuck with mainly instrumental versions of songs since we noticed the heavy amount of dialog and voiceover in the creative but also included vocals where they fit. We included bands from across the country that mixed folk and rock with rhythm and beats, as well minimal songs with piano and emotional instrumentals with piano and strings. Each of the songs conveyed pendulum shifts in emotions - highs and lows, victory and loss, just as the stories of the various players and coaches evolved in the series.
We received very positive response on many of the tracks we submitted, but the tracks by Bronze Radio Return and three other bands resonated the most. The client asked for more songs from these artists, as well as for instrumentals of all their songs. Things looked good, although the client was only going to have final decisions the day before their final edit - which was also two days before the actual air date. Each week, right before the final edit, we were excited but also on pins and needles. Each week, they pick a song by one of our bands! At the end of the series, we placed 4 songs - one in each episode.
The feedback has been tremendous, and the series has received much praise in the media, including several amazing reviews in the New York Times. All the reviews praised HBO for engaging the audience and connecting with their emotions - the music supervisor and the music choices was given significant credit for this. As a result, we have also continued to engage in more placements with this client for these bands and others in the MD family.