Interview with Michael Nielsen from Ninja Tracks

A brief interview with composer Michael Nielsen. Ninja Tracks was formerly known as Groove Addicts.

– How did Ninja Tracks come to be?

Kaveh and I had been friends for a long time. We both were working a lot, and had done some work on the same projects. So it occurred to us to team up. The first thing we did was to create a music library called Full Tilt, which had a lot of success in film and TV advertising. In 2009 we sold the Full Tilt library. We built a studio and brought in Collin Perry as a partner who interfaces with all of our clients, and we’ve been very busy working on “Revolution”, our new trailer music library ever since. Through it all, we’ve managed to score some film, tv, video games as well. Lots of fun projects!

– How did you guys both begin your venture as composers? Into the trailer music arena?

I started out on the rock and pop side of things. I think my songs were always a little too dramatic and cinematic for mainstream. But, when I started working a bit on commercials and movie trailers, everything really just clicked for me. Now I feel like my background in record production is one of my strengths. Kaveh started with piano lessons and a deep love of film music. John Williams’ score for E.T. really set it off for him. He knew he wanted to be a composer pretty early on.

– Ninja Tracks, “One” is the first release of your work on iTunes for the general public. How did it feel to see your work reach a wider audience?

When we started out, our clients wanted to keep the music discrete, so we kept everything as an industry only release. But things changed, and it’s fantastic to be able to release our music. We’ve done some very cool remixes that we’ve proud of as well, like, of Jimi Hendrix, Johnny Cash, Beck, Van Halen. It would be nice be able to release some of those as well, but there’d be a infinite amount of red tape with the record labels and publishers. “One” is the first release we did. It was a compilation of our first few Revolution albums. Ever since then we’ve been putting out a steady stream of albums. We’ll have a few more releases later this year.

– Any future projects?

We’re always working away on movie trailers. We’re always trying to come up with new ways to tell that story. It takes a good bit of experimentation. Kaveh and I recently scored the Xbox game Forza Motorsport as well. We’re excited to have some vinyl releases and deluxe releases coming of those soundtracks.

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