'Black Lightning' Composer on the Sound of the Series
Music is a big part of television. From songs chosen for specific scenes to the subtle sounds of a score in the background, music helps give a show's scenes and stories support by guiding viewers feelings and expectations. The CW's Black Lightning is no exception.
However, where Black Lightning is an exception is how the show's score and other music in the series work together to create a seamless experience for viewers, and according to composer Kurt Farquhar it's something he and the show's music supervisor work very hard at.
"Well, the big challenge is to navigate it in a way that it doesn't feel like you're jerking back and forth with here's the song, and here's the score, and here's the songs, and here's the score," Farquhar told ComicBook.com. "We try to do it in a way that it feels more natural. Sometimes, you don't know where the songs begin, and where the songs differ, and the score begins, and vice versa. And we, Kier Lehman, the music supervisor and I, work tirelessly to make that occur, along with the mixers to smooth it out and make these things really come in a more organic way."
That includes how he approaches the score in relationship to the use of popular music on the show. Farquhar reveals that for him, it's as much about the vibe of the music as it is the sound.
"Just from the standpoint of the writing, sometimes I look at the vibe and the... it's not so much with the sounds but the vibe and emotional intensity of the music, and grow from there into my score, or leading from my score directly into these songs," he explained. "Because the key is to not make it feel all herky jerky and to not make it feel like, 'OK. Well, here's the score now,' and as if we don't really have anything to do with the other part."
This kind of attention to detail is something that he said they've gotten a lot better at as the show has progressed. Farquhar said that while they have it more figured out now, early on, they were simply making it up as they went along.
"In the beginning, I would spend a significant amount of time because, yes, we were making it up as we go," Farquhar said before explaining that once they understood the show more, it got easier.
"That was just discovering what we were gonna do and making the rules for what we were gonna do for these different sounds too us time earlier, but then as we got to know what the show was, we got to move along pretty quickly," he said. "I think we get the shows done in pretty quick order these days."
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