You are here:  Home  >  Insights  >  Virtual Instruments  >  Current Article

L. A. Scoring Strings

By   /   March 2, 2009  /   No Comments

Despite a deeply troubled economy, Andrew Keresztes and his Los Angeles Scoring Strings demonstrates that entrepreneurship is still alive.

The news is not good from California. IOU’s are being sent out instead of tax refunds. Home values are sheering down. Unemployment is way up. California sales tax is up and it’s the highest in the nation. Good paying writing gigs are getting harder to find. As one composer said to me the other day, “It’s tough out there.”

Yet, at a time when people are feeling scared and new business start-ups aren’t too plentiful, unless you’re unemployed and having launched by default a new consulting firm, the spark of entrepreneurship is still alive in California as composer Andrew Keresztes plows forward with the development and soon-to-be released L.A. Scoring Strings.

Sample library developers don’t usually catch the PR eye of Governor Schwarzenegger’s office, especially lone wolves cloistered in a back room programming the computer for all it’s worth, unless, of course, you’re Apple and what you’re doing will create a dozen or so jobs. Then you get noticed. And you might even get a cigar.

With Andrew Keresztes it’s probably not likely that the Governator will notice, much less part with one of those imported stogies of his. Nonetheless, the work Andrew’s doing is still a light in the forest, a flicker that entrepreneurship isn’t dead yet, that Yankee ingenuity is alive and well, that one man working alone by vision, grit and determination can make a constructive, positive difference if he decides, too. And, by golly, that just might happen.

Programming alone in his studio, he is the alchemist seeking to turn dust into gold. For composers the world over, the results of such alchemy would be a string library that can really do divisi writing, which is the technique of breaking strings into smaller groups to play more vertical harmony. It’s the sound behind Frank Sinatra, Nat “King” Cole, Tony Bennett. It’s the sound perfected by Henry Mancini and deftly deployed by Wagner and French composers like Debussy and Ravel to create lush rich backgrounds, foregrounds, and spectacular effects and sounds that present time sample libraries can’t do. Oh wait, they can do them, but it makes your electronic strings sound like an organ. So a composer is compelled to have lots of sample libraries and lots of patience to manage the editing skills required to recreate these textures electronically.

For a composer having a string library that can really do divisi is like finding the Holy Grail and then drinking wine from it. That’s because it means that sample technology will finally enable a composer without access to an orchestra to reveal what he or she is really capable of writing. It’s also Flight because it’s going from the Sopwith Camel on Tuesday morning to the F22 Raptor on Tuesday evening, sometime after sundown. Liftoff! And the clock has started!

Like A1 Sauce for a steak, yeah, it’s that important. For a composer.

At the Winter NAMM 2009 show in Anaheim, California, Andrew had lots of people watching his demonstrations. His enthusiasm was infectious. And when intimidated by challenging comments, he just intimidated right back, but nicely. And with a smile.

As it should be.

Like Thomas Edison, he just keeps experimenting until he gets it right. Professional inventors call this process trial and success.

And as the very first demo written by Colin O’Malley shows, Andrew’s getting there.
As daunting a challenge as this has been, the next steps will be equally daunting. Like Edison, Andrew Keresztes will have to go from inventor/programmer to businessman, from the man in the labs to the man in the front office.

For Thomas Edison the company created to market his inventions was called General Electric. Like Edison, forming the company to market LASS will be the next step and an important one to watch.

Once the programming is completed, Andrew will write a horse of a check to Native Instruments, since he already announced that LASS will be housed in a Kontakt player.

He’ll now have to really pull out the calculator and start making tough decisions.

LASS will be too big to be a download. So it will have to be “printed” on a DVD. “Will that be 500, Herr Andrew, or a 1000?” Neither answer is cheap.

How will he sell it? Direct? That would make sense since a bulk of his customer base is within a 25-mile radius of his front door. Packaging? Will he need it? What’s the manufacturing cost? And how much for how many? And when the packaging arrives, who’s going to assemble it?

“Oh, Honey!”

And when the orders come in, who’s going to pack and ship it?

“Sugar Pie Honeybunch!”

And if he lives in an incorporated area, what will the neighbors say when those UPS trucks begin the daily amble down the street where he lives?

“Say, Neighbor, I can’t remember the last time I took you to dinner at RuthChris’ Steakhouse? How’s your calendar?”

And then there will be the requests from international customers to ship the disks in such a way that they don’t have to pay VAT along with wanting super cheap shipping.

“Hello? Is this Wing and a Prayer International Shipping?”

Then comes customer service. The #1 customer service problem of all time is installation followed by the traditional, “It ain’t workin’ on me system, MATE! Watcha gonna do about it?” Here, he will have to set up tech support and determine his role. There will be Logic users who can’t get “it” to work right multitimbrally.

There will be the irate customer who will complain on EVERY forum. Except the Food Channel.

Right now, Andrew has the only string demo I’ve ever seen that’s only had one criticism! But then, he hasn’t announced the price yet. And that will be the sticking point and the decision that separates him from just being one-of-the-guys, to a suit. A New Suit.

Everyone wants it at a low price. Make that a low ball price. He’s already announced that it won’t be any higher than $1500. He genuinely doesn’t know what the final price will be because right now the goal between writing assignments is to just finish the thing. When that’s done, then he’ll pull out the calculator from which point he’ll have to start the cost accounting process and finally determine whether he will do all sales directly, or if he’ll sell through a small selection of dealers, or if he’ll sell through a distributor, especially outside the U.S. Now he’ll have to calc in the exchange rates. Every decision made for selling through retail outlets and distributors means a higher list cost.

At this decision making level, delegation creates pricing complexity. Andrew will have to charge enough to pay himself back for both time and paying out NI. Above that, he has to build an organization which is time consuming. I know because I’ve been doing it since my son was 3. He’s now 27.

This is the hard part that all composers who enter the fraternity of being entrepreneurs who sell products to other composers end up facing. The only ones who understand are his competitors, and it’s unlikely that any one of them will be offering to take Andrew out for a beer just to see how he’s doing or to loan a listening ear.

It would be different if Andrew was offering The 10 Kazoos in 25 Different Mic Positions. But he’s not. He’s offering what every composer wants and that no company has yet delivered to market.

This is why future demos will be important. They’ll have to demonstrate just how divisi within the same library you can go. If div a 2 within each section can be achieved within LASS, a new standard will be set. The bar will have been raised.

Move over, Ravel.

    Print       Email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

You might also like...


Alexander Publishing Releases the Alex North Film Scoring Series With Real Cues and Video Lecture Support

Read More →
complex carbohydrates foods to eat preghiera amore di coppia chatta subito chat che aspettavi trovare amore preghiera phaseolus vulgaris taxonomy where can i buy phytoceramides in south africa borlotti beans chat line web flirt chat ohne registrieren conoscere persone a milano nuovi amici a bologna chat gratis senza registrazione giovani amicizia tra donne canzoni where can i buy phytoceramide cuori solitari gramellini chat libera echat best selling carb blocker chat gratis gitano siti gratis per incontrare single entrust restore phytoceramides cerca amici su instagram garcinia cambogia extract side effects siti per parlare con altre persone phytoceramides sweet potato based chat free online with strangers conoscere gente interessante single chat ohne registrierung kostenlos canned kidney beans for baby dried white beans buy white kidney bean extract australia cerco persone con cui parlare pure white kidney bean pills sistemi di sicurezza urmet relazioni sociali messaggero roma siti single roma quali sono i siti per conoscere persone conoscere ragazze filippine milano come trovare amici a varese phytoceramides with lipowheat benefits canned kidney beans nutrition phytoceramides from japan come fare amicizie maschili annunci privati escavatori chili recipe with white kidney beans cuori solitari annunci sicilia relazioni sociali messaggero roma cerca persone e indirizzo chat libera senza registrazione dr oz recommended phytoceramides pure phytoceramides where to buy health benefits of small white beans white beans in a can where to buy phytoceramides cream trovare clienti dottore commercialista what are the side effects of garcinia cambogia phytoceramides wheat germ oil adozione nazionale single sistema di sicurezza motozappa how to soak dark red kidney beans app per parlare in gruppo sito per conoscere persone yahoo annunci matrimoniali gratis bergamo agenzia matrimoniale russa foto chat gratis de espana trova persone in italia white beans phytoceramides whole foods agenzia matrimoniale donne filippine annunci extension torino siti per parlare francese where can i buy green coffee beans for weight loss do kidney beans have vitamin k garcinia cambogia results agenzie matrimoniali benevento phytoceramides wheat germ oil dating online brussels subito annunci friuli where can you get white kidney bean extract web chat gratis e senza registrazione firenze single speed green coffee extract java slim reviews phytoceramide vitamins donne chat exotic shorthair ricerca persone con numero di telefono flirt chat ab 50 dove posso conoscere nuovi amici siti annunci piu visitati relazione seria a 17 anni where to buy phytoceramide capsules motori di ricerca email uomini e donne alla guida vacanza per single agosto sito di annunci joomla plant derived phytoceramides supplements phaseolus vulgaris varieties chat senza iscrizione napoli nuove amicizie a roma white kidney bean weight loss cuccioli cerca amici 33 34 sito annunci telexfree come fare amicizia con le ragazze come trovare gli amici su facebook quanti single in italia come incontrare donne ricche incontra gente genova chat senza registrazione modena healthy skin hydration phytoceramides app store android funktioniert nicht mehr chat online a roma motori di ricerca x scaricare musica gratis siti di annunci senza registrazione white bean extract chat online 3com are pinto beans low carb siti per conoscere militari do phytoceramides really work mamma single fecondazione assistita chat donne disperate chat per single iphone ricerca persone a roma white kidney beans recipe drug interactions with phytoceramides chat gratis senza registrazione reggio calabria conoscere persone con facebook phytoceramide buy online cerco ragazza alla pari londra pure white kidney bean extract chat tifosi roma phaseolus vulgaris var. nana applicazione per conoscere persone su facebook white kidney bean weight chat per conoscere gente di tutto mondo online dating 101 nuovi giochi amici del mulino ucraina donne video phytoceramide capsules for sale c3g pure black bean extract love chat 4u cerca e trova offerte di lavoro ticino cerca persona numero telefonico phytoceramides customer reviews phytoceramides ingredients chat flirt wien chat senza registrazione entra come ospite phytoceramides skin benefits black and white 12s footlocker agenzie matrimoniali ferrara chat za android agenzia matrimoniale xi ciao rovigo cuori solitari parma