Today, 8th August 2020, Netflix begins streaming two more Eric Khoo movies that I contributed music to. Over at the Kevin Mathews Composer Facebook page, I shared these song stories to mark this occasion. Hope you find the reading as much fun as I did the writing.
Mee Pok Man (1995)
Probably the most important story of all in my journey as a composer. Eric had asked me to contribute an original song to the film score and frankly, I was not keen. Mainly because I had never done that before and I was anxious that I could not deliver. The usual imposter syndrome issues.
But Eric – to his eternal credit – persisted and thus, he ‘dragged’ me down to the studio where the sound was being mixed for the movie, put me in front of a keyboard and said – play an instrumental version of “Little Girl Lost”.
Now, that song was one of the many compositions contained in demo cassettes I had been passing to Eric on a regular basis so he knew my music well – sometimes better than I did! Heh.
And so I did and that’s what you hear in the movie. That moment was an epiphany for me as it proved to me that I could write music for film and the rest as they say … is history.
My Magic (2008)
On My Magic, Eric had decided that he wanted an even more minimalist approach to the film music score. So much of My Magic’s score was performed on an acoustic guitar, which was a challenge in itself, cuz I am not much of a guitarist!
My Magic was also significant and memorable, cuz it was the first movie on which Christopher, Eric’s son, contributed his first compositions.
Now, Christopher was about 10 at the time but even then, he demonstrated an uncanny knack for natural melodies, which engaged the listener with its poignant simplicity. Something to behold.
So based on Christopher’s main theme for My Magic, I composed and arranged the score, with contributions also from Krishna and Govin (both in their teens back then) on sitar and tablas.
The fact that My Magic was ultimately selected for the Main Competition at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival was indeed icing on the cake!
Good times indeed.
Please check out Mee Pok Man and My Magic streaming on Netflix now. Also you can read my thoughts about 12 Storeys, Be With Me and Wanton Mee here.