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Finding the Right Feel


How a song reaches iconic and instantly recognizable status is an ever elusive cultural riddle that has never been solved. When building projects and advertising campaigns producers look for music that fortifies their brands with feeling. The best feeling you could establish is one of familiarity. Large companies spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to license music that is current and widely popular because a hit song by its very being demonstrates that as a piece of music it appeals to a wide audience. If you can align your product or campaign with that song it stands to reason that your product or campaign will have appeal to the people that like that song.

Your project probably does not have a budget of hundreds of thousands of dollars but your objective is the same. So how does the project on a budget find the right piece of music to set a successful tone?

For the most part all music within a genre shares certain musical characteristics that define that genre. Ukelele's are not usually found in Heavy Metal tracks and reversely there is not a huge market for toxic distorted guitar players in folk music. Having said this I am sure that the seeds of innovation have spawned at least one band out there with a name like the Smokey Mountain Skull Crushers. But again - for the most part you will find that attributes of a song in a specific genre can be found in other songs within that same genre.

On iStock you can specify these attributes in your search and find a track that will give you the feel that you are looking to find. Lets look at a search to show how this works in practical terms:

Lets say you love a track from a band that uses acoustic guitars with drums and piano to set a mood of happy or upbeat with their music. you would simply enter these words with comas between them in the keyword search field.

Here are a few results we got on the first page of this search that are kind of expected to what I was thinking I'm sure there are some that fill your expectations too:

  • http://www.istockphoto.com/stock-audio-19914376-sunny-day.php
  • http://www.istockphoto.com/stock-audio-15884741-back-home-loop-1.php
  • http://www.istockphoto.com/stock-audio-9421242-the-sun-in-heavens.php

  • Here are a couple from the search that are not as literal to what I expected for the terms I added but they fit the keywords none the less.
  • http://www.istockphoto.com/stock-audio-14516525-non-stop.php
  • http://www.istockphoto.com/stock-audio-16642386-funny-village-country.php

  • This is a nice side effect of a keyword search in that there are always a few counterpoint results that can help give you a fresh perspective on different feels that may work for your project.

    The best music for your project will be the music that speaks to the needs of the message that you are trying to convey. Pairing that with some music that has elements of music that is popular to your audience will help put the right tone to your message.


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