Over the past 13 years Soundtrack_Cologne has become a fixture in the cultural calendar of the Media City of Cologne, which is home to the biggest German TV stations. Each year the conference welcomes guests from around the globe and is now an inspiration for the growing landscape of music festivals and conferences in Europe. As a symbol of recognition for exceptional achievements in the art of film music, Soundtrack_Cologne honors an outstanding individual each year with a Lifetime Achievement Award.
Soundtrack_Cologne CEO Michael P. Aust announced today that composer Cliff Martinez (THE NEON DEMON, DRIVE, TV’s THE KNICK) will receive the 2016 Lifetime Achievement Award during the festival, which runs from August 24-28. The award will be presented on August 27 during the awards ceremony.
Soundtrack_Cologne CEO, Michael Aust and program director Matthias Hornschuh stated, “Cliff Martinez’s talent is to contribute a very specific atmospheric frequency to movies through sound. Most recently this worked beautifully on Nicolas Winding Refn’s aesthetic masterpiece THE NEON DEMON. Martinez’s music adds to the visual level and his sound therefore becomes part of the narrative. His next-level electronic film scoring doesn’t make you miss the orchestra, but makes you experience a new and different quality.”
“I am honored to be receiving the Lifetime Achievement from Soundtrack_Cologne,” said Martinez. “I have heard many wonderful things about the festival and city and look forward to being a part of it this year.”
Perhaps it is because of his time in the punk scene that Cliff Martinez’s approach to scoring is nontraditional. His scores tend towards being stark and sparse, utilizing a modern tonal palette to paint the backdrop for films that are often dark, psychological stories like PUMP UP THE VOLUME (1990), THE LIMEY (2009) WONDERLAND (2003), WICKER PARK (2004), and DRIVE (2011). Martinez has been nominated for a Grammy Award (Steven Soderbergh’s TRAFFIC), a Cesar Award (Xavier Giannoli’s A L’ORIGINE), and a Broadcast Film Critics Award (DRIVE). He was named Best Composer at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival for THE NEON DEMON.
Still the drummer at heart, Martinez’s use of audio manipulations, particularly for percussive sounds, has been evolving through the years and is evident by the hammered dulcimer of KAFKA (1991), the gray-areas between sound design and score for TRAFFIC (2000), the steel drums and textures of SOLARIS (2002), what Martinez called ‘rhythmi-tizing pitched, ambient textures’ of NARC (2002), and ‘using percussion performances to trigger and shape the rhythmic and tonal characteristics of those ambient textures,’ as he described his score for 2011’s THE LINCOLN LAWYER.
Cliff Martinez was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in April 2012 with the Red Hot Chili Peppers. He earned the prestigious Richard Kirk Lifetime Achievement award from BMI in 2013. Martinez served as a juror for the 2012 Sundance Film Festival and served on the International Feature nominating committee for 2011 Film Independent Spirit Awards. Martinez’s credits include Robert Redford’s THE COMPANY YOU KEEP, Nicholas Jarecki’s ARBITRAGE, and Harmony Korine’s SPRING BREAKERS (co-composed with Skrillex). His second film with DRIVE director Nicolas Winding Refn, ONLY GOD FORGIVES, earned Martinez a 2014 Robert Award (Danish Academy Award). Martinez composes the music for the series THE KNICK, directed by Soderbergh. His upcoming films include THE FOREIGNER, starring Jackie Chan and Pierce Brosnan, WAR DOGS, directed by Todd Phillips, and the next film in the WOLVERINE series, directed by James Mangold.
Soundtrack_Cologne was founded in 2003 and is a film conference from a music perspective. From August 24th to 28th participants get a chance to attend three different themed music days ranging from Film to TV to Video games. Beside Cliff Martinez, Soundtrack_Cologne is proud to welcome composers Gary Yershon (“Mr. Turner”), Ilan Eshkeri (“Young Victoria”) and German composer Jasmin Reuter (“Two Mothers”) for their Film Day. Furthermore for their Television Day, Soundtrack_Cologne is excited to welcome Jeff Russo (“Fargo” TV Series), Reinhold Heil (“Deutschland 83”), Miriam Culter (“The Hunting Ground”), and Łukasz Targosz (“Floating Skyscrapers“). Lastly, for their Game Day: Jessica Curry (“Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture”), Christian Henson (“Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag”) and Christophe Héral (“Rayman Origins”).
SoundTrack_Cologne makes its audience experience how influential, diverse and versatile music and sound help to narrate a film. In some 30 workshops, talks, case studies and panel discussions, a dialogue is established between the various film trades. Experienced and established film composer pass on their knowledge to the next generation, while contests like the European Talent Competition and Peer-Raben Award appeal to the younger generation of composers and sound-designers.
*We are also proud to announce as the presenter of the award, Kinetophone’s Eleni Mitsiaki