Stephen Arnold goes cross-platform with latest package, ‘Stream’

With an energetic, transparent sound, Stephen Arnold Music has focused on a different note with its latest news music package, “Stream.”

“We wanted something that was very energetic, clean and transparent,” noted Chad Cook, creative director for Stephen Arnold Music. 

The package is developed with OTT and streaming in mind with the main themes and hooks created in a way to not distract from the primary news content, Cook noted. 

“Let’s try to do something that’s innovative with the sound but without being overproduced… transparent is a great word because we a package that didn’t compete with the content.”

This is also achieved sonically through the selection of frequency ranges in “Stream.” Careful attention was paid to ensure the package could have a distinct hook without complicating storytelling for the viewer.

“We found that there’s certain kind of percussions and kick drum registers that allow the music to be heard but not cloud the content,” said Cook. “Every instrument has a reason to be there the same way you would approach graphics.”

Percussion and pulse patterns serve as the base of the package with strings and stylized guitars adding flavor and chordal structure.

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“We tested the package and the themes on multiple mobile device speakers, on earbuds, on tablets, on desktop computers, on laptop computers and on high-end linear television speakers with subwoofers,” said Cook. “This music should sound great where the modern audience is going to be consuming local media. You can be important, you can be urgent, you can be driving and you can do all this without having a bunch of huge hits and dramatic string crescendos. You can do it just by the musicality, the tempo, the notes and whether a pattern is more frantic or not like an arpeggio pattern.”

“Stream” launched on Cox Media Group’s WFXT, Fox 25 Boston, and WHBQ, Fox 13 Memphis, and is available on a market exclusive basis.

The package includes multiple themes across dayparts along with the usual mixouts for 30, 20, 15, 10 IDs and logo sounders. 

The package is also working on a sound design toolkit to augment the themes with shorter cues for transitions.

“We’re putting together a collection of what I call tonal and rhythmic interstitials and transitions. These are one to two-second stand-alone pieces that have not only tempo, rhythm and taste to them but a tonal quality that may be an arpeggio or a pulse,” said Cook. “Because the package was built out of percussion patterns, arpeggios and pulse patterns, there’s all these layers of elements.”

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