For more than 25 years I have worked in game audio and music, first at Artech in Ottawa, then at A2M in Montreal and later with Jake Jones at Glebe Avenue Productions. The graphic above shows some of the more than 40 published games on which I have credit for creating the music and/or sound effects.
Please enjoy the demo music and video from some of these games and other projects presented below.
Music for Ender’s Game Alive Audio Book (2013)
During my Glebe Avenue days (my partnership with my good friend Jake Jones) we got a contract from Audible Books through my friend Orson Scott Card to create underscore and theme music for the audio book version of Ender’s Game. Many of these tracks are pre-production trials, exploring different themes and styles for the client.
I composed the vocal theme (including lyrics) as an idea for theme music. The guitars/mandolin were played by Jake. Ender Wiggin takes his earthside hiatus in North Carolina, so this was one idea to reflect that cultural setting, an Appalachia-style theme. I also tried mysterious versions with synth drones to make it more ‘spacey’.
Music for Incredebooks – Funny Fables (2013)
Three Little Pigs
Red Riding Hood
Jack and the Beanstalk
Mercury Games was a startup in Ottawa that had a cool idea: Incredebooks, Augmented Reality books for young children that paired beautifully illustrated hard-cover books with AR apps for the iPad. Point the iPad at the book and 3D pop-up scenes, animation and audio appear. Jake and I produced music for them (I did the composition and midi recording for these). Here is background music from the series that features live recorder and Melodica playing, as well as some fun vocals from two grown men. The styles vary, but are all geared to pre-schoolers.
Music for Games (1995-2015)
One of the artists at Artech, Norm MacQueen, suggested one day that I write a theme song with the words, “Come on, let’s play Monopoly”. I took that idea back to my office and wrote and recorded the song that starts this intro video (the complete song plays at the end of the game). People from all over have told me how fond they are of this song – I like it too! 🙂
Probably my most famous composition, this song has been heard by literally millions. Once I overheard a friend from work, whom I had known for two years, humming it to herself. When I told her that I wrote and performed it she was like, “Yeah, right.” Then I started singing it and she was excitedly yelling, “It IS you!” My brush with fame.
Monopoly Theme Song
This was a product demo for a tradeshow produced at A2M in Montreal about a year before our PS2 game, Scaler, was released. While all the Scaler SFX were mine, the game music was contracted out. The music for this trailer, however, was composed by me. The A2M Logo was my work as well.
In 2014 Jake Jones and I created music for Tiki Rush, a Mercury Active hand-held game with a Polynesian theme. This is my haka-inspired music for the splash screen.
Jake and I had a contract to create music for a pirate-themed game for PlayBrains. This was a fun genre to work with.
Three Blind Mice a la Mozart
Artech made a Mousetrap game – finished, delivered but never published for some reason. This was my intro music for that project. It’s a good example of my mastery of classical styles.
Artech produced this 3D version of Q*bert for PS2 in 1999. Text-to-speech was fairly new at the time and I used a rudimentary program to create the #*!%& outbursts. These tracks feature some live guitar and trumpet that I brought in to record for me.
I can’t remember if this was on the game disk or not, but I made this song featuring vocalizations (all synthetic) and sound effects from the game. I was especially proud of the long held note he sings – that was an especially impressive technical feat at the time.
Published in 1999, the Guess Who Detectives included my daughter Jacqui as Shaquanda! I’ve always felt this was one of my best productions, exactly right for the genre. And I like the little mouse voices in the background – I recorded them myself and speeded them up.
Celtica was a Myst-like puzzle game Artech produced in 1998. I’ve always liked the ambiance of the intro video and the buildup in the final win animation. The voice over is me, trying my best Irish accent. Close enough, I guess. I wish I had kept an uncompressed version of the closing audio – it sounded truly massive in my studio when I composed it!
Alien Abduction was an interesting Artech brainchild. The idea was to have an actual live TV gameshow using CGI and motion capture. It never got past the mockup stage, but we did some good work on the concept video. My wife Karen and her friends Brenda and Lynne sang the robot trio, while I sang the backing vocals.
Background music I wrote for Alien Abduction. For the Acappella song I sampled my voice and played it from the keyboard to get the short, tight backup vocals. The bass was recorded first thing in the morning so I could get a nice resonant low E!
Alien Abduction Acappella
Alien Abduction Background Samples
This is the little end video to Disney’s Stanley Tiger Tales which was released in 2001. I’ve always liked this one – the tender affection between the characters and the pause in the music when Dennis says, “Goodnight, tiger boy Stanley!” Very sweet.
Stanley In-Game Music
Jungly, fun in-game background music. Lots of bongos and berimbau.
This young man, from the north of England I’m guessing, recorded a play-through of Scooby-Doo Unmasked (for which I wrote music) and then makes some lovely comments while watching the credits. Thanks dude.
Music for Film
The first two cues here were written as underscore for vignettes for a Children’s Hospital telethon. The others were written at various times on spec.
These are recent compositions written for live performance, but are wonderfully cinematic.
Here are some short cues written as intro bumpers (on a web post, for example)