Music Plays A Big Role

Where were you on June 17th, 1994? It’s the date behind a short documentary I saw over the weekend as part of ESPN’s 30 for 30 series. I watched it late Saturday night via Amazon Prime video, and I was blow away. It really reiterated something with me about the videos we all produce.

First… the movie. There were some pretty interesting things happening in the sports world that day. The New York Rangers’ had a ticker-tape parade for winning the Stanley Cup, Arnold Palmer played the last round of his career at the U.S. Open, Ken Griffey, Jr. hit a significant home run, and the New York Knicks played the Houston Rockets in the NBA finals.

All of those events took a backseat to OJ Simpson riding in a white Ford Bronco.

The documentary pieces together the story from news coverage and some behind-the-scenes stuff surrounding all those events that day. The OJ material is familiar territory for anyone who followed the news that day, but the suspense builds and builds thanks in large part to the music chosen by the director, Brett Morgen.

Music sets the tone

Music isn’t something that should be overlooked or downplayed when producing your videos. Choose it wisely. Music is one of your most powerful tools when it comes to setting tone.

Morgen and his editor did a fantastic job with music in this documentary. It guides the audience through the story and helps recount the mood of the day.

So… where were you on June 17, 1994? I was interning in the WBBM-TV (Chicago) newsroom that day. What a crazy day to be working in TV news!

–Tony Gnau