Glenn Mack’s “Brujo” Film Scores at Studio Trilogy

Pictured (L-R) at Studio Trilogy are PC Muñoz and Jean Jeanrenaud recording a Vivaldi variation for “Brujo.”

Pictured (L-R) at Studio Trilogy are PC Muñoz and Joan Jeanrenaud recording a Vivaldi variation for “Brujo.”

San Francisco, CA, November 2014 – Director Glenn Mack’s feature directorial debut, “Brujo,” is currently in post-production with scoring sessions recorded at San Francisco’s Studio Trilogy by chief engineer/co-manager Justin Lieberman.  “It was PC Muñoz who suggested Trilogy,” commented Mack.  “He’s done a lot of work there and our sessions for the film were terrific, absolutely top-of-the-line.”

San Francisco-based PC Muñoz is known for genre-defying productions that stretch the boundaries of classical, funk, hip-hop, and the avant-garde. Muñoz’s past production projects include the Grammy-nominated 2008 album “Strange Toys” by cellist Joan Jeanrenaud and the award-winning multi-media project “Twenty Haiku.” His work has been praised by NPR, Performing Songwriter, DownBeat, URB, and many others. 

Mack had been using a classical recording of Vivaldi’s “Four Seasons” as a temp score for the film and went to Muñoz for a new recording.  “When I do interpretations, I always pretty much radically reimagine them,” explained Muñoz. “I said I’d like to do something completely different, almost render it in a jazzy style. I suggested to him that we do a drum set and cello rendering.”

“Brujo” (Spanish for sorcerer) revolves around the activity at a modern dance workshop. The story traces the arc of jealousy to its disastrous result and, at the same time, chronicles the creative intensity of artists coming together to collaborate on a project.

Muñoz met at Trilogy with former Kronos Quartet cellist Joan Jeanrenaud.  “We brought Joan in, had a brief discussion about it. Here’s the Vivaldi, we both know it, but we’re not going to try and play it as a strictly classical piece. We’re going to do it the way we do the music that we usually create. We talked a little bit about switching the time signatures and the kind of pulse it would have. Fortunately, for that session, Glenn was there. He’s super great to work with, just wanted to make sure that the vibe was right for his picture.” 

Muñoz describes the session: “We had the picture there on the big screen and just ran through the different ideas that we had for the arrangement until we landed on something, especially in terms of the drums, because obviously, there are no tracks of drums on the original Vivaldi. I had to figure out a way to make it rhythmically cool, and also useful for the scene, and something that Glenn would dig. We just sat there and knocked out a few takes.”

“The way Joan and I often work is with a beat that I make either acoustically or electronically,” Muñoz continued. “In this case it was all acoustic, and then Joan started to layer different cello parts — some rhythmic stuff, some long, legato stuff, some pretty stuff, and some stuff that evoked different types of moods for the scene. We also worked closely with sound designer Chris McGrew, who was there for that session, as well.”

After the tracks were completed and sent off to post-production to be mixed into the film, Muñoz commented on working at Studio Trilogy.  “It’s by far my favorite place to work in San Francisco, probably my favorite in California. It’s a fantastic studio – Justin Lieberman and Willie Samuels are great engineers, Cindy McSherry is a great studio manager, and they are always, always ready for whatever I’m looking for. I like looking for distinct and unusual situations in a musical context, and they’re always ready to go there with me.”

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