May I Present…Kenny Wood

December 21, 2012

 “If you know deep in your heart that you have what it takes to go far as a musician, then don’t let anything stop you.  With patience, determination, and a little bit of a business sense, you will get there.  Above all, you just got to be yourself and be the best at whatever it is that represents you.  When people see that, they’ll flock to you because you inspire them by simply believing in yourself.”- Kenny Wood

Ladies and gentlemen, may I present one of the finest composers to watch for in 2013.  He was the conductor for the  2009 Academy Award nominated animated short Oktapodi  and has been lauded for his virtuoso musicianship.  His compositions create an atmospheric cloud where musical notes galvanize the emotions and act as a vital counterpart to any moving picture.

Mr. Wood’s compositions in film, TV, Web and Video Games have been premiered around the world at many renown film festivals. With a bewildering  work ethic and commitment to making a difference through music, it is clear that when we look back at the history books, Mr. Wood’s name will surely be in line with the highest acclaimed composers  in film like Thomas Newman, Alexandre Desplat, Mychael Danna, Dario Marianelli, John Williams,  Rachel Portman , Philip Glass, and Danny Elfman.

unSET - score

So, without further ado may I present,  an emotional defibrillator to  Film, TV, Web & Video Games, Composer,

Kenny Wood

MUSICAL COMPOSITIONS:

Kenny Wood MUSIC

Where are you from?
Los Angeles, CA

When you were  little what did you want to be?
A pro athlete, though when I realized that may not pan out, I knew I could not be happy being anything else, but a musician.

Do you have a score that moves you the most? 
Danny Elfman’s score to “Batman” (1989)

What score was the most fun to work on?
One of my earliest projects, “Jungle Gym” (2006)

What’s the latest project you are working on?
A hilarious web series comedy, “Research.” that is destined to become a hit TV series

What are three words you think of in conjunction with music:
1: harmony 2: sophistication 3: joy

What inspires you or initiates the inspiration that drives you? Do you have a process? 
When I’m collaborating on a song or film score, the main thing that inspires me is seeing a high level of passion, dedication, and quality from my collaborators.  When I see a film that just looks amazing, the musical ideas come flowing in instantly.  Same for songs, if the lyric or initial inspiration is great, my instincts take over from there.  On the other hand, when I write music for myself, the inspiration comes from my life experiences, the people I know, the world as I’ve seen it, both in good times and in bad.

What has been your most recent muse? 
For the last couple weeks, I’ve been listening to the score from Dreamworks’ “How to Train Your Dragon,” by John Powell.  I love the work of Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, but I felt the Oscar for best score that year should have gone to John for his tremendous work on that score.

My favorite three past times are:
1: exploring culinary delights with my girlfriend of 6 years 2: jamming to music with friends 3: Watching Lakers basketball

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Favorite word:
“Yes”

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Favorite thing in nature:
Spiderwebs

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One of  your favorite movies: 
“Monsters Inc.”

One of your favorite musicians:
Oingo Boingo guitarist Steve Bartek, whom I’ve had the pleasure of jamming with on a few occasions.

Favorite place to create music:
Wherever I am when an idea pops into my head.

Favorite smell: 
Southern BBQ

Favorite sound: 
Stadium crowd cheering (for your team)

Was there a time you felt like you were not going to be able to make a living off of being a musician?  What would you advice to others about pursuing their dreams based upon how you were able to manifest yours.
To this day, I have spats where I feel I may not make it as a musician… it goes with the territory.  The best advice I have to up-and-comers is to know that you guys are not alone when the feeling of failure comes along.  If you know deep in your heart that you have what it takes to go far as a musician, then don’t let anything stop you.  With patience, determination, and a little bit of a business sense, you will get there.  Above all, you just got to be yourself and be the best at whatever it is that represents you.  When people see that, they’ll flock to you because you inspire them by simply believing in yourself.

Who/What inspires or moves you? 
I’m inspired most by art, film, or anything in the world that’s done well.  The great masters like Da Vinci, Beethoven, Thomas Edison, etc. devoted their entire lives to making their contributions to society second to none as well as make them something the entire world can appreciate for generations to come.

What’s one of your favorite quotes? 
“No matter what, you just got to strut.” from “The Nutty Professor”

KENNY WOOD’s compositions:

 Kenny Wood MUSIC

Sudden Death!

Go For It!

Hew

The Case of the Missing Garden Gnome

AmoeBattle

Do Whatever

Broken

The Good River

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Emotive Paint & Hidden Words

November 12, 2012

Some of the world’s greatest thinkers used quill pens to ink their ideals and imbue society with new perspectives while other greats prefer the paint and brush as their tool.  Alexandra Grant is one such artist who utilizes the asthetic beauty of paint to relay philosophical statements, captivate the eye and stimulate society to ask why?

Alexandra Grant, a Los Angeles based collaborative artist, uses the world as her muse and language as her galvanizing spring towards creating the most awe inspiring sculptures, paintings, drawings and videos. ‘I have ideas I feel should be expressed in paint. I have a voice and it’s about putting feeling into things,’ she explains. From books, artist, poetry, quiet or passionate people, space, the cactus garden at Huntington Gardens, fashion photography on glossy magazines to simply sitting at a dinner table with family, friends, good food and wine, Grants inspiration is brought about from a lucid curiosity that spawned from childhood.
Born in Fairview, Ohio and raised in Mexico City and France, Grant’s childhood was colored with visits to the museums and with Arts & Crafts objects her parents collected on trips.

Graduating in 1995 from Swarthmore College with a BA in History and Studio Art and from California College of the Arts in 2000 with an MFA in Drawing and Painting, Grant has had her works displayed in some of the biggest galleries all over the world including Los Angeles County Museum of Arts (LACMA) and Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (MOCA). Some of her past collaborations include Michael Joyce, the author of the first hypertext fiction, andOde to Happiness, a book written by first time author Keanu Reeves.

Aside from being an avid recycler and living a sustainable lifestyle, Grant uses recycled art products and is a philanthropic artist who works in collaboration with the non-profit Watts House Project, an artists driven neighborhood redevelopment enterprise. She was the Founding Board Chair of the organization and with the help of architects Robert Sheinberg and Arnold Swanborn created ‘The Love House,’ the Cerant family home on 107th Street, which dons a large sculpture of the word ‘love.’ Funds for the project have also been raised by the sale of her ‘Love’ rings andnecklace.

Grants current projects include art pieces that were inspired by Century of the Self, a documentary about Edward Bernays, Sigmund Freud’s nephew, who was the first psychoanalyst to apply his uncles work in the field of public relations in order to create what we now call commercials and advertisements. Her work delves into the roots of consumerism and superficiality and explores how we view ourselves. Grant is a firm believer in getting in touch with the self and not allowing or succumbing to the projections or stereotypes of the world, whatever that may be, she explains, ‘I think a person should always be themselves. An intellectual doesn’t have to look intellectual. It’s about feeling things and about making the world inside and outside of you equal. It’s important to let what’s inside of you come out.’ These works will be featured in collaboration with LAXART and will be featured at an exhibition in 2013 at University of Sothern California Fisher Museum.


Forêt Intérieure (InteriorForest) another project debuting April through June 2013 at the 18th Street Arts Center in Santa Monica, consists of a collaboration with Hélène Cixous, a Paris based writer and philosopher on her book Philippines which deals with several themes including the relationships of north and south, dreaming and reality, telepathy and empathy, colony and colonizer, woman and man, and child and adult.

While she keeps a busy schedule, upon meeting her, Grant does not come across as someone that is embarking on so many collaborative artistic feats bent on inspiring and elucidating the heart and mind. Rather she maintained an elegant yet childlike resilience that, like her art, was succinct and palpable in all its serene pleasantries.


alexandragrant.com