The golden age of television was a goldmine for guitar music,
from moody noir-guitar and twangy spy themes (Danger, Peter Gunn, and Secret Agent)
to serious sci-fi and campy fantasy (The Twilight Zone and Batman), Westerns (Bonanza),
and comedies (The Munsters, The Beverly Hillbillies, Green Acres, and The Monkees). Many of
today’s most popular shows continue to follow this tradition, with guitar-centric themes
and incidental music cues, as well as actual song excerpts, but it’s the new wave of reality
shows on A&E, Nat Geo, History, Food Network, and others that are breaking new
ground. The genre has spawned a new breed of TV composer, who instead of scoring to
the picture, licenses music from an extensive library of pre-recorded cues and themes
in every imaginable style. You may even hear some of the same cues on different shows.
Front and center amongst the pack is the
History Channel’s hugely successful Pawn
Stars series, which follows the in-store and
in-the-field exploits of the extended Harrison
family—Rick, Big Hoss, and the Old Man,
plus the always loveable Chumlee—who run
the Gold & Silver Pawn Shop in Las Vegas.
(Fact: The shop has scored a few 6-string
prizes over the years, including Mary Ford’s
white Gibson Les Paul/SG Custom and British
session great Vic Flick’s Olympic White
Now in its fifth year, Pawn Stars features
tons of badass guitar music courtesy of Jingle
Punks, a music licensing house and cooperative
co-founded by Dan Demole and “Jingle”
Jared Gutstadt in 2008, and the sheer abundance
of guitar-heavy cues and to-die-for
tones makes every show a virtual cornucopia
of modern styles and sounds. (Could there
be a cooler job?) It’s nice work if you can get
it, so let’s investigate how to go about creating
convincing and satisfying musical snippets
in any style in four bars or less.
PAWN SHOP PRIZES
The show’s original opening theme (Ex.
1a) is a raucous, Zep-like, start-and-stop
affair—the pickup and bar 1’s rhythm motif
recall “The Ocean”—laced with Example
1b and 1c’s gritty lead fills (labeled “Fill 1”
and “Fill 2”) inserted between the repeats
of bars 1 and 2. Note how each oblique
unison bend in Fill 2 receives different
rhythmic phrasing, giving the lick a totally
authentic, raggedy rock vibe. Embellish the
three Bb5–F5 hits in bar 3 with the Gtr. 2’s
country bends (labeled “Fill 3” in Ex. 1d),
and then tack on Bar 4’s skranky Bb5–C5–
G5 ending phrase to complete the picture.
More proto-metal Zep-isms that could easily
fit into Sabbath and Purple oeuvres abound
in the pair of E-based cue-style snippets
featured in Examples 3a and 3b, which feature
power chords and hammered single-notes
within the same phrase, and funky
root-to-b7 syncopations. Moving to G, Ex.
3c rocks an ascending G pentatonic scale
with two different endings, and you’ll find
Ex. 3d adaptable to both heavy metal and
swampy blues. (Tip: Try it with a slide.)
Evan Marien Releases Video For "Meteor" From New Project EMAR (WATCH)
Phil Jones Bass and Enfield Guitars To Sponsor Solo Bass Contest at Labella Showroom October 20th
Nathan East Announces New Album, 'Reverence'
Cloud Microphones Introduces Cloudlifter Zi
Tycho Speaks on the Surprise Release of 'Epoch' Album
This Week in Free Stuff: Soundtoys, Roli & J-pop
Weekend Chops Builder: Rock Technique - Keyboard Bass Technique
Toontrack Releases New EZkeys Instrument and MIDI
Introducing the New AEA RPQ2 and RPQ500 Preamps
Johnny Winterâ€™s Firebirds and Lazer Guitars Head to the Auction Block
Electric Guitar Built from Scratch in Seven-Minutes in Time-Lapse Video
Boss Introduces Its New Katana Amp Lineup
Alter Bridge Premiere New Song, "The Other Side"
Live Video Footage of Metallica Performing "Moth into Flame" live on 'The Tonight Show'
Deftones and Belching Beaver Brewery Launch Signature "Phantom Bride IPA"
Forgotten Guitar: Les Paul and Mary Ford's 1954 Guitar Duel
Former Korn Guitarist Wesley Geer Talks First Annual Rock to Recovery Benefit Concert
Guthrie Govan Recorded These Incredible Guitar Solos in Just One Take
Copyright ©2016 by NewBay Media, LLC. All Rights Reserved. 28 East 28th Street, 12th floor, New York, NY 10016 T (212) 378-0400 F (212) 378-0470