Sencit Case Study: We Own This City
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Sencit Case Study: We Own This City

The Project

When the creator of The Wire writes a new series for HBO, the trailer has to have just as much grit as the story at the center of it all. Our producer, Brett Sorrentino, and music supervisor, Brett Weyhrich recently had the pleasure of getting looped in to help with music supervision and customization for David Simon’s new series, We Own This City. Working alongside Giaronomo Productions’ Chris Devine, our team and composers were able to provide a few music options that landed the teaser and the trailer exactly where they needed to be.

Background

Chris Devine reached out to Sencit for some help sourcing the right music to convey the themes of David Simon's new series for HBO. The goal was to unearth a cue that succinctly captured the narrative arc while maintaining the right energy level to mirror the gravity of the subject matter. Based on the direction and references provided by the client, Brett Weyhrich saw the potential to drive the music search with a hunt for dramatic, cinematic, retro-soul music. We felt an alignment with artists like Michael Kiwanuka, Algiers, and D’Angelo, and Chris came back with a few Kiwanuka tracks for consideration.

Kiwanuka’s Solid Ground was one of those tracks, and the team settled on moving forward with it. Brett Sorrentino sent it off to our composers to begin crafting the customization. While this was in motion, Brett Weyhrich continued the music supervision search and landed on another track: Cleveland by Algiers.

The teaser was in a good place when HBO discovered they had used Solid Ground in another trailer. This is where having multiple options is a godsend. We were able to quickly pivot to Cleveland, but ultimately HBO decided to explore some hip hop tracks. The team used what they learned from their previous experience and suggested some hip hop library tracks. Our composers Kris Kovacs and Jake Siegler created overlays and remixes to amp up the action and grit. Chris cut with Kris’s version and incorporated small amounts of Jake's version. In the end, Kris recreated the bits of Jake's version that were used to keep it sounding consistent.

Overall, the combination of Sencit’s expert music supervision, customization, and composing team was critical to making this project sound like nothing else.

The Process

When starting any project, Sencit is dedicated to understanding the client’s vision inside and out. From the imagery they find most inspiring, to the timeline we have to make it all happen, nothing is overlooked. Our approach integrates A&R, artist and label partnerships (both known and up-and-comers), music supervision, and rights clearances, bespoke production, all with the purpose of providing the best tools to create successful campaigns.

With 13 years of composing music and sound design for trailers, we have a deep understanding of our clients' needs, even when they cannot articulate it. Combining this knowledge with our music supervision network, we are able to go beyond a typical trailer library and bring in an array of collaborators to create a compelling campaign. We Own This City’s trailer is a great example of this.

The Result

One of the main challenges with this project was balancing the large amount of characters and dialogue in the trailer with music that worked to underscore that context, yet elevate the more dramatic action scenes. Our team was able to do just that and bring this idea into reality within 24-48 hours, which is a feat in its own right.

Licensing

All music and sound design provided by Sencit requires a license for use. To license music or sound design for your trailer, spot, or campaign, please follow these steps:

Find the tracks that you'd like to use.

Click Start Licensing below to fill the form or email [email protected] with details as described on that page.

Complete the license, pay for the use and sync the music!

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