Sync Music for a Change:
Activism + Music Licensing Listening Session
Make a donation, share a song
December 5th, 5pm PDT Listening Session
with Aminé Ramer
November 11 - 18, 2022
As a music supervisor and consultant, Amine Ramer has influenced the sound and mood of feature films, documentaries and award-winning television series for over a decade. Ramer’s success can be attributed to her careful selection of significant artists, ranging from the unknown to the popular, and her keen sensibility to create a visceral experience by connecting sight with sound.
Credits include “Crip Camp”(academy award nominated) “Flint Town” “Jay & Silent Bob Reboot” “Baby Done” “The Rhythm Section” “Weeds” “ The Signal” “The November Man, “Faking it”, “Richard Pryor –Omit the Logic”, “The Lovers and The Despot”- “For A Good Time Call”
Board Member of GMS (Guild of Music Supervisors)
Current projects include: Lonely Planet
Panelist/speaker for: The Great Escape, M for Montreal, Iceland Airwaves, Break Out West, Musicians Institute, De Paul University, UK Trade and Investment Sync Mission, Music and Media Finland, Billboard Film & TV Conference, Bylarm, Olso, SXSW, The Great Escape, Norwich Sound and Vision, among others.
How it works
Write a letter/email to your House Representative or Senator, or make a donation related to this month's issue (details below).Take a screenshot/photo of your letter/email or donation (for December we're only doing donations - please keep reading. If you're not from the US, keep reading for instructions).
Upload the screenshot and the song you want to share here. Please label it 'December SM4C' or something similar and be sure to include your name and email address!
Join our FB group for the zoom link (posted the day of the session) and to keep up-to-date on upcoming listening sessions & announcements.
By submitting your song and/or joining the zoom call, you consent to allowing us to play your song during the listening session, and to have it included in the replay (and show whatever is on your video on zoom during the replay) which will be posted in the FB group.
In the past we did first come first heard but we're getting lots of great submissions and we want to encourage more people to write to their elected representatives and submit their songs so we are changing things up. We will play 15 or so songs during the listening session, time dependant, but rather than songs being played in order of submission, Justina & Elaine will review all of the songs submitted before the deadline and the 15 songs that are of the highest quality and/or the best fit for the supervisor's needs will be played. ALL of the songs will be forwarded to the supervisor in a playlist, regardless of whether or not they get played in the listening session.
DEADLINE for taking action and sending your song is November 18th, 2022 AT 5PM PDT.
* for more info on knowing about who owns the rights to your song and to learn about the terms 'one-stop' and 'easy-clear', click here.
** to know if your song quality is good enough go to Spotify and look up the soundtrack to a show you like. Ask yourself if your song's sound quality is at the same level as the rest of the songs.
Fundraising for Reproductive & Civil Rights
First, thanks to everyone who voted and to those who donated and wrote letters to voters over the last few months. The mid-term election results, while still uncertain as of writing (11/11/22), are looking much more promising than had been forecasted by the polls.
This month, Aminé has requested that we raise money for Planned Parenthood and the ACLU.
Given the recent supreme court decision overturning Roe vs Wade and the general assault on democratic norms this seems like a great idea! Planned Parenthood, as a non-profit, has always needed funding and until we can re-establish a constitutional right to an abortion people will be in need of their services more than ever. And the ACLU is committed to fighting for abortion care, trans people’s right to live freely and people’s right to vote.
To submit a song:
Donate to Planned Parenthood
Donate to the ACLU
If you're not in the United States and wish to donate to an organization in your own country, please go ahead and make a donation to a non-profit organization of your choice. We've covered a lot of issues over the past year or so - take your pick!
When submitting please use the subject 'December SM4C' or something similar and be sure to include your name and email address!
1. Can I write and mail a letter instead of sending an email?
- Absolutely. Just take a photo of the letter and upload it to the Disco link with your song
2. Can I make a donation instead of writing to someone?
- Yes. If you want to donate to any other organization that supports this issue you may do so and upload a confirmation of your donation
3. Can I phone my representative instead?
- Yes. In this case you'll want to record a video from your computer/iPad etc. while you make the call. You will likely end up leaving them a voice message if they don't pick up, which is just as good.
4. Will my song get played in the session for sure?
- We will have the music supervisor listen to as many songs as possible but not every song will get played. However the music supervisor will be sent a playlist of all the submissions.
5. Can I send a demo or worktape?
- No. Please only send songs that a music supervisor would be able to use immediately. Songs should be mastered and radio-ready. Send your best song!
“Hope is not a lottery ticket you can sit on the sofa and clutch, feeling lucky. It is an axe you break down doors with in an emergency. Hope should shove you out the door, because it will take everything you have to steer the future away from endless war, from the annihilation of the earth's treasures and the grinding down of the poor and marginal... To hope is to give yourself to the future - and that commitment to the future is what makes the present inhabitable.”
Why Write Emails & Letters?
Do they even work?
Yes. From the ACLU website:
"Letters and faxes are an extremely effective way of communicating with your elected officials. Many legislators believe that a letter represents not only the position of the writer but also many other constituents who did not take the time to write."
We chose writing emails because they are a straightforward and easy. You can also choose to do a hand-written letter for even greater impact. If you want an activism nudge that could also further your music career, this is a way to start.
You are totally welcome to call your elected official, or donate money to a cause or campaign you believe in. The important thing is to try to get involved in democracy and social justice in some form on a regular basis.
Respecting the Music Supervisors
We're not cool, but we try to be
Music supervisors are regular people with jobs to do who get flooded with email submissions on a regular basis. Of course it's cool to follow them on social media but please be discerning about reaching out directly. It's a great idea to research the projects they work on before contacting them. IMDB.com, Tunefind.com and ispot.tv are great resources. They may not respond to messages or emails and that's nothing personal. Consider looking into getting a sync agent to represent your music. If you're looking for more information on sync licensing, sync agents etc. we highly recommend checking out our friends' club Ctrl Camp and their bi-weekly meetings on Clubhouse!
Who We Are
We're a couple of musician activists (Justina Shandler & Elaine Ryan) who met in a course on songwriting for music licensing and became close friends and co-writers. We started noticing that some of the most progressive people we saw on social media were music supervisors. Why not harness that for good? We decided to see if music supervisors would share their time and expertise around music licensing in exchange for us musicians helping moving progressive causes forward.
Special thanks to Jessica Craven for ideas on actions to take and wording for outreach to our elected representatives.
Contact Sync Music for a Change
We'd love to connect! You can reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org
We don't accept submissions of any kind outside of the listening sessions or unless specifically solicited. There's always another listening session in the works so the best way to share your music is to join the FB group (details above) and submit to a free listening session!
Sign up as a Music Supervisor
If you're a music supervisor, music coordinator or sync agent who'd like to support this initiative, let's connect! Send up an email at email@example.com if you're interested in being the featured guest on a future listening session. Feel free to let us know about any issues that are of particular interest to you and we can try to match that with upcoming legislation. You can also leave that field blank if you're open to a lot of different issues.