With a résumé that includes sound tracks for Up in the Air, School of Rock, and The Hangover, the native New Yorker is one of Hollywood’s go-to guys for music supervision, the job of finding and placing songs in films. Switching roles a bit, he, along with his co-producer, Gelya Robb, has put together Rave On Buddy Holly (Fantasy), a star-studded tribute to one of Lubbock’s most famous sons. The album, which commemorates Holly’s seventy-fifth birthday, features Paul McCartney, Cee Lo Green, Patti Smith, and many others.
You’re an in-demand music supervisor, a job a lot of people think any music fan could do. But there’s a lot that goes into it.
You have to do a lot of business. Not only do you have to choose the right songs, you have to be able to get the rights and afford them.
I’m sure it’s frustrating when you have a great piece of music and you can’t get the rights to it.
You have no idea.
You’ve done a lot of work with two prominent Texas directors, Wes Anderson and Richard Linklater.
I first met Wes when he showed me Bottle Rocket. I’m working on my seventh movie with him, and we start talking about the music even before there is a script. There’s a lot of collaboration as the story is taking shape. Rick and I started working on a movie that he did called SubUrbia; he’s somebody I really value as a friend and a collaborator. I say that Rick is the only person I know who is neither neurotic nor bourgeois, and that’s such a rare distinction that I would do anything for him.