068 Three-Months Forevers from ‘The Orphans’ by James Barbarossa

The piece of music featured in this episode is called Three-Months Forevers. It’s a slow and steady post-rock influenced piece which I wrote for the sci-fi audio drama The Orphans, which follows a group of survivors who crash land on an alien planet. The soundtrack aims to convey a yearning feel as the characters feel the loss of one of their own. This week we’ll look at some of the insights into why and how it was made. My name is James Barbarossa. I’m a composer from England, and this is How I Make Music.


01:37 The piece was influenced by the Dr Who theme. The bass and drums captured the emotion I was trying to convey. There’s a certain amount of ‘aping’ when it comes to imitating your influences.

03:42 I used a chimes patch as a leitmotif for the character Nora Evers. The chimes play whenever she is present, physically or otherwise.

05:01 In Batman Vs Superman, the Wonder Woman musical theme is a distorted electric cello. Strings are traditionally female instruments, especially in opera. But the power of this theme is the fact that it’s an electric cello. 

05:55 I used Garage Band to compose this piece. Take a listen to the piece-by-piece breakdown of the rhythm section, the Nora Evers chimes, rising piano melody and the clean electric guitar leitmotif. 

07:18 A major challenge in writing for audio drama is to avoid overwhelming the sound in the scene. Another challenge is knowing when it’s done! Art is never finished, only abandoned.

08:29 The electric piano, a jazzy instrument, is used to represent the unrefined nature of the human characters. The clean grand piano is colder, more cruel and represents the artificiality of the society in which they live. 


* Listen to audio drama The Orphans by Zachary Fortais-Gomm www.orphanspod.com/
* Check out other work by James Barbarossa open.spotify.com/artist/7velnaC7HmpMcK0OuUWNmf
* Follow James Barbarossa twitter.com/barbarossaphone


* Murray Gold – Doomsday (from Dr Who)
* Hans Zimmer & Tom Holkenborg a.k.a  JUNKIE XL – Is She With You? (Wonder Woman Theme)


How I Make Music is where behind-the-scenes musicians tell their own stories. Every Wednesday, we break apart a song, soundtrack or composition and investigate the insights into how it was made.

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