August 25, 2016
Gustavo Santaolalla —
How Movie Music Moves Us

Movies, for some of us, are a form of modern church. The Argentinian composer and musician Gustavo Santaolalla creates cinematic landscapes — movie soundtracks that become soundtracks for life. He's won back-to-back Academy Awards for his original scores for Brokeback Mountain and Babel. We experience his humanity and creative philosophy behind a kind of music that moves us like no other.

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has composed film scores for over a dozen features including Amores Perros, The Motorcycle Diaries, Brokeback Mountain, Babel, On the Road, and Wild Tales. He also composed the opening score for the hit Netflix series Making of a Murderer. His latest solo album is called Camino. In 2015 he was inducted into the Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame.

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I did not have a chance to listen to the full interview (I will now), yet, this is truly music to my hears. No words are needed similar to Santana's Samba Pa Ti and so many more compositions by artists, which have given us saving grace in the gift of their music. Simply stunning.

At 31.58 I would argue that music has the power to transcend a person and would leave the transforming to what Gustavo Santaolalla opens this interview with "something beyond" one's self.

What a wonderful interview.

Krista, thank you for this interview. I am up early Sunday morning, in my car, when you crisp and eloquent voice comes on my speakers. You captured my curiosity as you described Gustavo's interview. I tune in and your musical editing between topics is just transcending. Beautifully done. Infind myself parked in my driveway, transfixed with this interview. I've listened to his music before, but I never knew about Gustavo, other than he's a musical genius. Now, through your interview, I realize that he and I share a lot in common. Perhaps, through his music I had indentified with him without ever knowing it. Thank you for exploring a realm of music that isn't so mainstream. -from the heart of Amish country, Lancaster, PA,Bryan-

Each week i enter the world of spiritual wonder and gratification with Krista.The depth of the interviews is provocative and each week inspirational in depth and curiosity. With Gustavo she walked us out into a new etherial space. I am always moved by these interviews...this week i was brought to tears several times. The space and time between the notes captivated my soul. My humble gratitude is deep for the moments you bring to us. estelle speros macdonald

I live in Lima, Perú, a 10 million people city with increasingly insufferable traffic. I find Onbeing a perfect way to make sense of the daily commuter´s trap. I knew Santaolalla as a great musician, and thanks to Krista I know better the artist. Rush hour will never be good, but today I enjoyed the trip and my first hour of the day was enriching. Thanks for that Krista, Gustavo and the sponsors.

Today I had the chance to listen to Gustavo Santaolalla and it was a real pleasure. He is such a great musician, composer, and person that it was a real pleasure to be part of the audience. Thank you!

The museum of the Moving Image in Queens has an amazing exhibit where you can select different music to the same film clips and see how it changed the whole experience. It is amazing that Gustavo Santaoalla composed the entire score to Brokeback Mountain based only on reading the movie script! This music then got edited into the film to create a great movie and win an academy award! I loved this interview as I love all of On Being.

that's good

There is something about Gustavo Santaolalla both in voice and in-person. It's hard to describe, really. He is "something beyond."

Another beautiful exploration.

Santaolalla's music rises and reaches something within us. His music seems to add to the emotions and the look of any scene where his music excersises the listeners and also in a weird way, the actors in a film scene to bring a story to life in interesting and deeper ways. Would like to work with him someday.

Four times I listened to Ms Tippett's episode with Mr Santaolalla, and oh how it does move me. The first time I listened, I particularly latched on to the discussion of identity. This past time listening in Warsaw, almost two months since my first meditation on a rain tunnel of a bus in rural Ireland, I began to hear the music for the first time, and most importantly, the stillness between. I draw connections between Gustavo's (may I call you Gustavo?) audio suspension and Pico Iyer's monastic writing process. (I listened to Iyer's interview on the same rain tunnel ride, and oh, the patter of rain was so still...)

Really, I thank On Being for teasing out the durable connectors in each episode, linking one to the other, like the chain of Being that we often surface. Music is like writing, is like cetology, is like Rabindrath Tagore's polymathy (personal favorite). May we all be still enough to navigate the space between.

Love and cheers,

You might be interested in the chapter on the music of Brokeback Mountain.

Loved this one! Really enjoyed the music snippets play... usually you post them... How can I access? Thank YOU for this soulful genre.

That's how I'd phrase the deeper question of an artist's identity in the extensive connection of which Gustavo Santaolalla: who I am when I'm irrevocably called to love.