Looking back on composing for "Am Fear Líath".



It was the tail end of July into August 2023, that I first came into contact with Pauric Brennan, director of “Am Fear Liath”. I'd joined a queue of hopefuls interested in scoring his film which had entered the post production stages, replying to his call for a composer.

I was pretty inexperienced, but always confident in my abilities This was a feature length and after he'd informed me there was a few applications to get through, I'd half resigned myself to the fact that maybe this wasn't a gig I was gonna get. It's pretty crowded out in media composer land. Especially with the onset of ready made loops and midi packs which has led to an explosion of absolute chancers out there with maybe a thimble full of talent, jumping on the bandwagon. But, I'm a chancer myself. Granted, I've put the hard yards in and given myself a crash course in music writing and production over the last 20 years.

Needless to say I was shocked and delighted to hear I was the preferred candidate. And through video chats and messages, I got to know more about this guy, who has his finger consistently on the pulse and doesn't seem to stop. Between writing, producing and directing, it was clear his love for the arts knew no bounds and he was very clear about what he needed from me, what worked and what didn't. Doing the homework, I viewed his works and was hugely impressed particularly with “Don't Sell Me A Dog”. I highly recommend checking his work out.

I'd previously had a pretty big project fall flat and end up in post production hell, in which I worked with a director who was practically uncontactable, not answering emails and was never at the other end of his phone. My fears were immediately put to rest with Pauric. He clearly loves what he does and was always available if I needed his opinion or approval and what's more, it was a brilliant collaborative process. The greatest piece of advice I got was “Have fun with it”. That immediately put me at ease. It told me that my director trusted me and thus, it was so much fun to write for “Am Fear Liath”. Which in turn was already great fun to watch, before I'd even stepped into my studio!

Now it's April 2024 and the film is streaming on PRIME in Ireland & The UK and TUBI TV in the Americas. It's also picked up some awards along the way! I'm very proud to have played my part in the production of this film, and I look forward to hopefully working with Pauric in the future.

And I'll always be thankful he saw (or heard) something that made him take a chance on this guy. 

I have released a short compilation OST to “Am Fear Liath”, which is available to stream or buy on BANDCAMP or SPOTIFY but I highly recommend you watch the film first!

As always, thank you for reading. Take care.

(Director at work. The photo features left to right Andy Yule, Pauric Brennan, Siobhan Aislinn and Mark Agar.)

#amfearliathmovie #indiefilmakers #philmccleanmusic #pauricbrennan #brenenterprises #filmcomposer

1 comment