Interview With Scooby-Doo! And The Gourmet Ghost Music Composers Jake Monaco And Matthew Janszen

Interview With Scooby-Doo! And The Gourmet Ghost Music Composers Jake Monaco And Matthew Janszen

Interview With Scooby-Doo! And The Gourmet Ghost Music Composers Jake Monaco And Matthew Janszen

Scooby-Doo’s latest animated movie – Scooby-Doo! and the Gourmet Ghost is now available on DVD in the United States from today (11th September), the movie is also available for digital download. Before the DVD’s release, I had the opportunity to interview the composer of the new movie (and also the Be Cool, Scooby-Doo! animated series) – Jake Monaco and fellow co-composer – Matthew Janszen and ask them questions about the music on the new movie as well as any general Scooby-Doo questions.

In “Scooby-Doo! and the Gourmet Ghost”, Scooby and his fellow Mystery Inc. investigators visit the Rocky Harbor Culinary Resort to meet Fred’s uncle Bobby Flay, a real-world celebrity chef. The gang soon learn that there’s more to the resort than haute cuisine after they find out about the legend of the Red Ghost and the disappearance of Bobby Flay’s great ancestor chef.

When the Red Ghost returns to haunt the inn, the gang teams up with Bobby and his fellow chef friend – Giada De Laurentiis to search for clues, but will history repeat itself with the possibility of another world-famous chef disappearing? Scooby and Shaggy are definitely going to enjoy this mystery solving adventure because of their insatiable appetite and love of food. Celebrity chefs – Bobby Flay and Giada De Laurentiis guest star and voice as themselves in the movie.

Before getting into the interview, would like to thank Jake and Matthew for answering every question and also to Andrea Resnick at Impact24 PR for the opportunity. Also thanks to Scoobypedia (The Scooby-Doo Wiki), co-host of the Scooby Dos and Don’ts PodcastBilly Seguire and Isma (@The_Ismazing) on Twitter for contributing questions.

More information about Scooby-Doo! And The Gourmet Ghost on the following link:

The Interview

For reference:

JM: Jake Monaco
MJ: Matthew Janszen

Scooby-Doo will be celebrating its 50th anniversary next year, the show has become one of the greatest animated shows of all time, can you tell me your favorite memories of the long-running franchise? (this can include movies, whole series or individual episodes)

JM: I truly can’t believe that’s it’s been 50 years of Scooby-Doo! That makes him, what…. 450 years old? The first iteration of Scooby-Doo that I remember watching on a regular basis was “A Pup Named Scooby Doo”. It was after that when I started seeing reruns of the original series. Those theme songs will forever live on in the “useless information” part of my brain.

MJ: My favorite memory of the franchise has always been the original theme song! I watched a lot of the reruns as a kid and the theme was always in my head! In fact it will now by in my head for the rest of the day! I also have fond memories of Scooby Doo at a local amusement park called Kings Island near Cincinnati which used to have various characters from the franchise walking around the park!

How did you start your career in film and TV scoring?

JM: For a couple of years after graduating college, I played in a band, did the singer/songwriter/tour around thing, until everyone else wanted to settle down with steady jobs and a family. At that point, I looked into the Film scoring program at USC. I visited the program in 2005 and immediately fell in love. I applied and was fortunate enough to be accepted for the ’06-’07 school year. Just as graduation was approaching, I began working with Christophe Beck as his tech assistant. This began a seven year mentorship which led me to where I am today.

MJ: My first time coming to LA and experiencing the film music world was when I participated in the Henry Mancini Institute in 2005. I just fell in love with the music scene and knew I wanted to move here. After finishing college I was awarded the BMI Pete Carpenter Fellowship where I was offered the opportunity to study with one of the greatest TV composers of all time, Mike Post. Mike was very kind and generous, and at the end of the fellowship introduced me to Christophe Beck. While working for Christophe Beck, I also met Mark Kilian who I assisted for many years. During that time I attended the ASCAP Film Scoring Workshop with Richard Bellis to help develop my solo career, which eventually led to me acquiring my first television movie. Then little by little, project by project, I began to build the career that I have today.

I’ve heard that you use a range of unique instruments to create the film’s score, how do you decide which instrument has the sound you’re looking for?

JM: I love toys. Anything that can create a unique sound. The challenge sometimes comes with deciding the best way to implement that sound as it sometimes may not register as innately musical. In the case of Gourmet Ghost, Matthew and I didn’t end up using any custom instruments, however, a large portion of the film ties in to colonial times, so bringing in some period instruments, such as a fife, seemed only natural.

Do you get inspiration from the music from the prior animated series of Scooby-Doo and if so, what are your favorite compositions?

MJ: The main inspiration comes from using a combination of jazzy elements and orchestra which is reflected in the original series. Beyond that it’s basically starting from scratch because the surrounding mystery is brand new, as well as the locale and the characters.

How did you become the composer for Be Cool, Scooby-Doo and Scooby-Doo and the Gourmet Ghost?

JM: I got an email from my agent one day with a brief for “Be Cool” as they were heading into post-production. They had sent a two minute scene from the first episode and asked a few different composers to write a demo to the scene. There wasn’t too much direction to go on, so I opted to pull some jazzy inspiration from the original 70’s iteration and kick it up a notch to score the scene with a more modern animation approach. The creatives seemed to like it, so I went in for a meeting and was pretty much hired right there.

When the director and producer were looking at music for Gourmet Ghost, they went through a bunch of past Scooby music as well as other demo reels that composers had sent in, and they liked a lot of the material from Be Cool, specifically how themes had been threaded through the episodes. So, again, I was asked to come in for a meeting and was asked to come on board.

What’s the difference between composing for a movie and composing for a TV show?

MJ: The overall job is the same, which is helping to tell the story with music. But logistically the main difference between the two is schedule. TV schedules tend to be a bit tighter, and many times you are having to crank out a first pass of music for an episode in 1 week!

Who’s your favorite character in Scooby-Doo?

JM: Velma. I tend to overthink things. Plus I like orange.

MJ: I relate very much to Velma as well. I’m extremely analytical in everything that I do! However in “Be Cool” Daphne took on a kooky comedic vibe which I absolutely loved!

What’s your favorite Be Cool, Scooby-Doo episode and what piece of music did you enjoy composing the most in the show?

JM: Ooooooh tough one. “Me, Myself and A.I.” was definitely a fun episode from season one. Got to introduce some synth elements and bring in a slight flavor of dubstep into the show’s musical palette. The romp song that I got to write for that episode is also one of my favorites.

MJ: So many! I loved Screama Donna. I got to write a lot of classical piano music and even a piano concerto near the end, which as a pianist, is very near and dear to my heart.

When is the music done during the process of making an episode and movie?

JM: It varies quite a bit actually. If a composer is lucky enough to be brought on early, during production or even pre-production, then we get to start writing themes and putting together ideas before seeing picture or hearing any temporary music that anyone may have already become attached to. There tends to be a little more creative liberty that can be taken. However, most of the time, a composer comes on during post-production, when they are done filming and are going through their editing process. For a film, I have had anywhere from 2 weeks to 9 months.

Do you work with the show and movie’s writers to make sure you get the right tone of music for particular scenes and do you get to see the animation in some form before you start composing and producing music?

MJ: Animation is a long process and we usually don’t come on board till the very end after the script’s have been written, recorded and animated. So at our first meeting there is usually a rough cut of the animation ready for us to start scoring to. Sometimes we are brought in early during the script phase if there is a specific song that the characters will be singing. The animators will then animate to the song so everything lines up.

Warner Bros. Animation is currently running a Get Animated: Invasion Exhibit at the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles, which is an exhibit about the music in many Warner Bros. Animation and Hanna-Barbera cartoons and there’s a section dedicated to the music of Scooby-Doo, did you contribute your music for the exhibit?

JM: I have read about this and want to go so badly! To my knowledge, none of the Be Cool music is part of it, but I haven’t been down to the exhibit, so I’m not sure yet!

I’ve noticed that you’ve composed music for Amazon’s The Stinky and Dirty Show and Netflix’s Dinotrux, both are in a completely different genre to Scooby-Doo, how do you adapt to each show and produce the right sound?

JM: That is the first challenge that I face with every new project. What is the unique sound for this specific world? For Scooby, the jazz element had been established 50 years ago, so I took that into consideration. For Dinotrux, the briefing asked for elements of “Stomp” and “Blue Man Group” — so heavy on the percussive elements. So, I bought a bunch of pitched plastic tubes and built the sound of the show around those. For Stinky & Dirty, the show is all about fixing problems, typically using trash or found objects to do so. I figured, why not have this be the concept for the score as well. So I had some custom instruments built from hubcaps, pots and other things I gathered. My kitchen still no longer has a wok.

What was your main inspiration while composing the theme song from Be Cool, Scooby-Doo since it’s very different from the previous ones?

JM: Ha! Sadly, the opening theme song was not written by me. Long, somewhat humorous story that I’ll save for another time.

How do you capture the personality of each Mystery Inc. member in the music?

MJ: When the gang is working together we use our main mystery theme, but sometimes they split off in to smaller groups which is where each personality can begin to shine. It always boils down to how the characters react to the situations they are in. For instance, Scooby and Shaggy always tend to be together, and since they’re basically scared of their own shadows, we can score the scene in a comedically frightening way to reflect their personalities. Also anytime they spot food we like to make a meal out of that musically to show their love of food!

There’s a brand new Scooby-Doo animated series coming out in 2019 – “Scooby-Doo and Guess Who?” will you be composing music for the new series?

JM: I have been following that as well as the animated film coming out in 2020 I believe. No word yet, but I’m trying!.

Jake Monaco’s and Matthew Janszen’s IMDb Pages:

Jake Monaco’s IMDb Page:

Matthew Janszen’s IMDb Page:

Adventure Time Finale Come Along With Me Soundtrack And Adventure Time: The Final Seasons DVD To Be Released 4th September

Adventure Time Finale Come Along With Me Soundtrack And Adventure Time: The Final Seasons DVD To Be Released 4th September

Adventure Time Finale Come Along With Me Soundtrack And Adventure Time: The Final Seasons DVD To Be Released 4th September

Cartoon Network USA has announced that they will be releasing the soundtrack for the four-part finale of Adventure Time – Come Along With Me. The “Adventure Time: Come Along With Me Soundtrack” which will be available for digital download and streaming services the day after the show’s finale airs on the Cartoon Network USA television channel (4th September). The soundtrack will also be available for pre-order from Saturday 1st September.

The soundtrack release will feature over 20 tracks from the show’s finale, which includes original music by composer Tim Kiefer, a new song by Rebecca Sugar and the full-length version of Ashley Eriksson’s “Island Song” (aka Come Along With Me). The soundtrack also features artwork by Candice House and JJ Harrison. In addition to the soundtrack’s digital release, there will be a special edition vinyl LP release by Mondo which will be released this Autumn, the LP will cost $25 USD.

Yesterday (27th August) Entertainment Weekly has published four new images from the show’s finale on their website, which can be viewed on the link below, from the images, we can see Princess Bubblegum in a heroic pose, Ice King fighting Finn, Jake hiding in Finn’s hat and Finn riding Jake in the shape of a horse.

According to entertainment news site – Entertainment Tonight – singer-actress (and daughter of actor – Will Smith) Willow Smith will be guest voicing in the show’s finale. Willow will be voicing a character named Beth, which is the tall yellow character (with a striking resemblance to Jake) in the image below:

Adventure Time Finale Willow Smith

Last night (27th August) was the screening of Adventure Time’s finale in Los Angeles, there was also a Q&A session with special guests including Olivia Olson (voice of Marceline), Jeremy Shada (voice of Finn) and Adam Muto (Adventure Time’s showrunner and executive producer), the Q&A session was moderated by Dan Casey from digital entertainment news website – Nerdist. Fans attended the special farewell event wearing Adventure Time costumes and clothes.

Ahead of the Adventure Time: The Final Seasons U.S. DVD release, which will also be released on the day after the finale’s premiere (4th September), media news website – IndieWire has released an exclusive clip from the DVD’s special features, the clip is an animatic from the Elements miniseries episode – “Winter Light”. The Adventure Time: The Final Seasons DVD will have every episode from seasons 8, 9 and 10.

The show’s finale – Adventure Time: The Ultimate Adventure (aka Come Along With Me) will air on Cartoon Network USA on Monday 3rd September at 6pm ET/PT.

Cartoon Network This Week Episode 25 Best Of San Diego Comic Con 2018 Part Two

Cartoon Network This Week Best Of Comic Con Part 2

Cartoon Network This Week Episode 25 Best Of San Diego Comic Con 2018 Part Two

Summary Of This Week’s Episode

This week’s episode of Cartoon Network USA’s YouTube news and info series – Cartoon Network This Week is a continuation of last week’s episode. Last week’s episode was about Cartoon Network’s events during the first two days at San Diego Comic Con 2018, the convention was held last weekend (19th to 22nd July). This week’s episode covers the final half of the convention, in this week’s episode, Sam Armour checks out the Steven Universe panel and meets up with the voice of Peridot – Shelby Rabara. Afterwards, Sam goes to the multi-show Cartoon Network Creators panel and meets up with Ian Jones-Quartey (creator of OK K.O.! Let’s Be Heroes), Daniel Chong (creator of We Bare Bears), Matt Burnett and Ben Levin (creators of Craig of the Creek), Julia Pott (creator of Summer Camp Island) and Diego Molano (creator of Victor and Valentino). Also included in this week’s episode, highlights from the Best Summer Ever Costume Ball, with guest judges Craig of the Creek’s Philip Solomon (voice of Craig) and Steven Universe’s Michaela Dietz (voice of Amethyst), Deedee Magno Hall (voice of Pearl) and Sam himself!.

Information about last week’s episode (Best Of San Diego Comic Con 2018 Part One) can be viewed on the link below:

This Week’s Episode In More Detail

This week’s episode starts of with the Steven Universe panel with show creator Rebecca Sugar, Estelle (Garnet), Michaela Dietz (Amethyst), Deedee Magno Hall (Pearl), Zach Callison (Steven) and with Shelby Rabara (Peridot) as moderator. At the panel, Shelby announced that the Steven Universe: The Heart Of The Crystal Gems DVD will be released on Tuesday 14th August and also a new Steven Universe mobile game – Tap Together which will also be released in August. At the panel, Shelby asked Rebecca about the future of the show, Rebecca didn’t want to drop any spoilers, but she did share the next new episode – “Legs From Here To Homeworld” with the audience, the episode carries on from where the Heart of The Crystal Gems story arc left off and can also be watched on the Cartoon Network App within the United States. During the panel, fans had the opportunity to ask the panelists questions, the panel was concluded with one big final surprise, a teaser trailer for Steven Universe: The Movie, which will be coming soon to Cartoon Network.

Full length video of this year’s Steven Universe panel at San Diego Comic Con:

More information about Steven Universe: Heart Of The Crystal Gems DVD on the link below:

Sam interviews Shelby after the panel, Sam asked her about the reveal of the Steven Universe: Movie, Shelby didn’t see the teaser before the reveal, so it was a surprise to her as well. Sam mentioned that Peridot’s character has developed during the course of the series, Shelby said that Peridot has developed empathy and became friends with Steven and the other Crystal Gems. Shelby’s favourite character is Aquamarine, a gem with a “sassy” personality, known for her short stature, school uniform attire and British accent. One of Shelby’s favourite moments when voice acting Peridot was when Peridot rebelled against the Great Diamond Authority by calling Yellow Diamond a “clod”, this moment can be seen in the episode “Message Received”. Her favourite line was the “Flowers For You” moment from the episode “Reunited”. The Steven Universe segment concluded with Rupert attacking a Yellow Diamond cosplayer with his tongue.

The next panel was the multi-show Cartoon Network Creators: Drawing On Inspiration panel with Ian Jones-Quartey (creator of OK K.O.! Let’s Be Heroes, also panel moderator), Daniel Chong (creator of We Bare Bears), Matt Burnett and Ben Levin (creators of Craig of the Creek), Julia Pott (creator of Summer Camp Island) and Diego Molano (creator of Victor and Valentino). Sam asks the show creators a few questions, Julia Pott said that it’s her first time at San Diego Comic Con, she also said the event is “bonkers” but “lovely”, it’s a place where “people can express themselves in a really nice way”. Matt Burnett and Ben Levin mentioned that they saw a JP cosplayer, they thought that was awesome, Sam even did the JP dance with the cosplayer :D. While talking to Sam, Ian Jones-Quartey announces a special episode of OK K.O.! Let’s Be Heroes coming to Cartoon Network USA this autumn – Crossover Nexus, which will feature Steven Universe’s Garnet, Ben 10 and Raven from Teen Titans Go! as guest characters. Sam asked Diego, Daniel and Julia what they would cosplay as, Diego would dress up as The Toxic Avenger, Daniel would wear a cat costume and Julia would dress up as Hermione from Harry Potter or as The Worst Witch.

A sneak peek clip from the first episode of Victor and Valentino was shown at the panel, in the clip, the god of mischief, a fox-like creature is causing mischief in the town and Victor and Valentino accidentally unleashed the god on the town and must work together to put the god back into its figurine. Victor and Valentino will premiere on Cartoon Network USA next year. Daniel talks about season four of We Bare Bears which will premiere next Monday (30th July) on Cartoon Network. Next Monday, a total of eight new episodes will air, with each episode airing on the hour between 7am and 2pm. In the new batch of episodes, there will be a Baby Bears episode where we see the bears go to school for the first time, an episode filled with music and also some episodes with guest appearances.

Full video of the Cartoon Network Creators: Drawing On Inspiration panel at San Diego Comic Con 2018:

Information about OK K.O.! Let’s Be Heroes: Crossover Nexus and sneak peeks of Infinity Train and Victor and Valentino on the link below:

Julia mentioned that the rest of season one of Summer Camp Island will be airing on Cartoon Network USA sometime towards the end of 2018, in the second half, there’s more lore, revealed secrets, deeper story, character factions, some new characters including sasquatches and elves. Julia voices Susie, the show’s main antagonist and recites her favourite line from the show “Don’t come crying to me with your dumb baby problems because I’m not your mum. I’m the prettiest girl who ever talked to you”. The creators then express their appreciation for the support they had from fans.

Next up, is the Burning Questions segment, this where users of the CN Sayin’ app can ask questions in the form of a video, a young fan asked a Steven Universe question of whether Steven and Peridot will ever fuse, Rebecca Sugar responded by saying it’s up to both Steven and Peridot to come to that decision. A Craig of the Creek and Steven Universe fan asked how Steven Universe and Craig of the Creek relate to the fictional show – Little Butler, both Matt and Ben explain that Steven Universe exists as a show within the Craig of the Creek universe and Little Butler is a show within Steven Universe, Matt and Ben explains that Craig must be a hardcore Steven Universe fan as he knows the Little Butler theme song as he sings it in the episode “Bring Out Your Beast”. Ian was asked who has the highest POW Card level in OK K.O.! Let’s Be Heroes, Ian mentioned the character with the highest level so far in the show is Chip Damage, who’s level 15, but also mentioned that K.O. once had a glitched level 100 card. Daniel was asked why Baby Ice Bear doesn’t talk, he explained that Ice Bear as an adult doesn’t talk much, so it made sense that Baby Ice Bear doesn’t talk at all, the big mystery will be when he starts talking.

Cartoon Network’s events at this year’s San Diego Comic Con concluded with the Best Summer Ever Costume Ball with guest judges Craig of the Creek’s Philip Solomon (voice of Craig) and Steven Universe’s Michaela Dietz (voice of Amethyst) and Deedee Magno Hall (voice of Pearl) and also Sam himself! There were some amazing costumes with people dressing up as characters from Adventure Time, Steven Universe, Teen Titans Go! and OK K.O.! Let’s Be Heroes.

This week’s episode of Cartoon Network This Week:

Not mentioned in this week’s episode was another Cartoon Network event at San Diego Comic Con 2018 – the “Her Universe Fashion Show: Cartoon Network Junior Designer Showcase”, congratulations to Miranda, Corina, Jelly and Zoe for winning the competition with their Powerpuff Girls inspired costume designs. The winners will have the opportunity to design a Her Universe fashion collection for BoxLunch Gifts (owned by retailer Hot Topic). The showcase was presented by actress and Her Universe Founder, Ashley Eckstein.