by Dan Goldwasser
ScoreMakers is a new series of profiles of the men and women who work behind the scenes to bring music to the movies - and to the fans.
Name: Robert Kraft
Profession: President, Fox Music
Education: Harvard University (BA, Visual Studies
Recent films worked on: Walk The Line, The Family Stone, Fantastic Four, Kingdom of Heaven, Roll Bounce, Garden State, Fever Pitch, Robots
Biggest films worked on: Titanic, Moulin Rouge, Waiting To Exhale, Mambo Kings, Little Mermaid, Hope Floats, Bulworth, Romeo + Juliet
What is your musical background: I started as a singer/songwriter in NYC, recording four albums (two as "Robert Kraft and The Ivory Coast”, and two solo albums. I moved to L.A. in 1983 to produce records and write film and TV music (songs for "Fame", the theme song "Brand New Life" for "Who's the Boss"); in 1992 I was nominated for an Academy Award, a Golden Globe and a Grammy for Mambo Kings (Best Song: “Beautiful Maria of My Soul") and also in 1999, I received a 2nd Golden Globe nomination for Anna and the King (Best Song, co-written with Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds".) Also nominated for two Grammy's including Best Children's Album for A Muppet Christmas Carol.
How did you get into recording music for film? In 1983, Ken Ehrlich asked me to write a song for the TV Series "Fame" on NBC, and then in 1984, Francis Ford Coppola asked me to score my first feature, a Warner Bros. picture called Seven Minutes in Heaven.
What was the best experience you've had? Recording Celia Cruz singing "Guantanamera" for the wedding scene in "Mambo Kings".
Without naming names or titles, what is the worst situation you've ever had at a session, and why? Once, when I was just starting, I let a famous drummer pressure me to change the backbeat in the title song of an important film, although it was a very different rhythmic interpretation than the way I'd written the song. The song was the end-title of the movie and the single on the record, but I've regretted that decision ever since.
What are you working on now? I've just finished the music for two films simultaneously: Walk The Line with music and songs produced by T-Bone Burnett, and The Family Stone, score by Michael Giacchino.
Are you a ScoreMaker? Contact us, and let us know!