'Trolls World Tour' - Justin Timberlake & Ludwig Gransson
Why is that? There are other kinds of trolls. Taw ancestors created six streams each for different type of music pop punk while you classical techno country and rock on going to unite the six strings and destroy all music except for so. I'm GONNA need your stray joining us for this podcast. Which was recorded remotely at like to welcome. Justin Timberlake and Ludwig Goeransson. They served as executive music producers on trolls. Roll tour. The sequel to DreamWorks Animation's twenty-six Musical. The voice cast is again led by Timberlake who voices branch and Anna. Kendrick the voice of Poppy who discovers six troll tribes devoted to six different kinds of music. The movie is jam-packed with music and features voice cast that includes Anderson Pack. Rachel Bloom Mary. J. Blige George. Clinton Kelly Clarkson and Ozzy Osbourne Multi Hyphen Timberlake earned an Oscar nomination for can't stop the feeling and original song from the two thousand sixteen trolls and again. He has some new original songs. In this sequel joining him to work on world tour was Goeransson. Who earned an Academy Award? Twenty nineteen for the score Black Panther. I'm Caroline Georgina. Welcome to the Hollywood reporter's behind spring to thank you both for joining us today. Thanks for having me. Thanks for having us. How are the both of you? I you know. It's strange because I we have a six month old at home so we've kind of been inside and taking care of him for the last six months so I mean a lot of us obviously changed like I don't go to my studio and more I kind of. I'm trying to work from home but were still living in the bubble with a newborn and it's weird and we can't see our families you know it's it's but we look at our son every day and kind of like he doesn't know what's going on and like we kind of try to live. The world series is literally. I remember the first six months of my sons I two. It's basically like you don't know what's going on outside of your door anyway. Yeah I think we're all just trying to do our part and know. Listen to the right people and it's definitely a strange thing but I think we're all GonNa make it through your part. Said we have to keep that in. Mind on a lighter note. Let's talk about your latest project. Trolls world tour. Tell us about how you and Ludwig came together. For the sequel. We were lucky to have the success. We have with the first one and knowing we started talking about the second one and teams of the movie and the plot of the film. I knew I wanted someone to come in. Who had that sort of approach of almost historian and we got as far as having conversations with professors from UCLA. About Sorta just music in history and the way it's always been sort of a hand in hand thing and The only thing I remember was our producer Gina. Shake coming to me. And saying hey. What do you think about collaborating with Louis Garage? And I was like Yeah that's that's a no brainer for me. And then Ludwig and I met up his studio and we just chatted about. It's kind of funny. It's like musicians when we meet. It's there's not a lot of small talk you Kinda just start going into you know all the ideas you could possibly have and I think even walking away from that first meeting we already had some ideas of who could be great for Co writes on certain songs and who we thought could be interesting for certain characters because they hadn't cast of characters at that point for the second installment and we've just kind of off to the races at that point on the whole thing. He has some new original songs and also covers. How did you select lineup? Well obviously we were able to spot a lot of music on the first one and for all intensive purposes the movies the musical and I think that the I used a lot of covers and that was something this time around where we said. We want to have more original music. To really give the franchise. Its own kind of fingerprint as well but I don't know it was. I think we just Kinda went through each spot and said you know. Does this feel like a spot sore original. I think we'd always want to try for an original over a cover but because we already had the kind of flipping around the cover songs in the first one that's already part of the DNA of the franchise so there were certain parts. Like the verse. Trolls met Lee. You know where we cover girls and a half Bonn and group is hard and Good Times and a few others. I mean we're we're actually mixing within that and original. Were introduced are character. Tiny diamond so we were actually able to find spots in the movie to. Kinda do both at the same time and give the audiences that love the first one of familiarity. Well let's listen to some of the music. Let's start with the first track. The other side just in you collaborated with his eye on this one this one that this is a kind of a funny story where we had spent a few days in the studio Ludwig and myself and Max Martin and Sarah aarons and we were trying to write songs for the big moment at the end of the movie and we had the idea for just saying but we also were trying to write a few ideas because we didn't know exactly what was gonna work and what wasn't so. This is just very bare bones and there was one morning where I how many days in where we on Earth were. I think we were three days in right and we were basically just trying to write this last song for the mood. The climax of the movie and we were just everyday. They're working on this one idea and like kind of bang our heads in a table and finally we just start. We were like. Oh this terrible. Let's start a new idea so me Max and Sarah started this new song idea one morning. Where Justin was Kim in a little bit later that day. And you to tell us what happened when you came into the studio. Yeah Yeah so so basically I I think I said I'm just GONNA come in a little bit later. I can't see the forest through the trees so to speak on this. And if you guys want to come in earlier please do. And and they did and they had this idea which is Kinda like drums and the signature kind of keyboard part that literally had put down and I walked in and everyone was just kind of really down and they're like no we don't have it yet we just don't have it yet and then they were kind of like well. We have this other idea. And Ludwig plays it. And then Maxon. Sarah started singing some of the melodies from the hook and I lost my mind. I was like. Are you guys in saying this? Is this is amazing? So that was maybe just the energy of mixing it up a little bit and it's like the only time I've ever come in late to a session and it paid off. I think we're all I kind of having a pseudo depressive moment and then just in comes in with this energy is like telling us like this is actually a really good idea and we finish it within like a couple of hours. Yeah I mean it goes to show sometimes songs that too. It's all about the energy that you're putting into it when when you're writing on because that's what starts to translate when people hear it so started putting down baselines and coming up with as many melodies as we could and then we wrote the hook and wrote the verses and at that point we were talking about who would be a person that was maybe unexpected but also fit the song really well to collaborate with and says. Oh was the first name that came up just because we're all such big fans of hers and and we thought it could be cool interesting different things for her but when you hear her on the track. It's it's almost feels like the song is written for her. The House will lose in kind of nebulous. Now you also incorporated some covers Ludwig. Maybe like to start with this one. Tell us about how you pick Barracuda. Well think what Justin was talking about earlier like this movie. We were able to do it because we had a lot of time. Like we basically had a bit of two years working on all these songs and we were kind of figuring out. We were working so closely with director and producer. Regina Walton in David so we were all together kind of figuring out the story and figure out the narrative through the music. And just talking about the the medley earlier. I think we had in the beginning. We have twenty thirty different versions with with different songs in a medley and the movies covering all types of music. So there's a pretty big treasure chests of incredible songs that we were able to put in this movie and is a really difficult task to choose. What songs are going to go in? And what not but. We had time to try out a Lotta different songs. But I I think we had like two or three hundred different songs that we constantly rotated and try it out different versions of Burke Khuda was. I think one of the last cover songs to make in the movie. We're always kind of struggling to find a rock song. The wasn't It needed to have like a bad ass energy to but couldn't be too scary but also needed to be Cadillac uplifting adventures. You mentioned that when you started this project. Not Everybody was cast. Could you share the story of the casting of maybe one of the other artists in the movie? The first one that comes to mind is Anderson. Pack because I think they had finished getting a deal with George Clinton and Mary J. Blige say the king and Queen of five city which are sort of fung tribe of patrols and we needed prints and we needed someone who had a large personality but also was very musical as well. I think casting movies like this. I would certainly don't envy the casting director on a movie like this because you need sort of a star in the sense of old Hollywood where they can sing and act and be funny and give emotion. You know the sort of three tiered entertainer in this type of situation and not Anderson is just so he sits a prodigy musically There was never a doubt in my mind that that was going to work. You know you have to remember too that this movie you know. We've worked on this movie for two three years or something like that. So yeah you know at the time I kind of. I was a big fan of his Malibu record at the time and I was pitching him as the Prince of are certain funk world and I think he came in for a session and just like crushed and everybody loved him and he was somebody that I was very happy to have. Our cat is It it it really sort of for Ludwick and I. It really is was a kind of keep calling an embarrassment of riches because everybody was so talented they came in and crushed their parts and then they would go in and do their voice acting and just crushed that as well those things can be really tricky and and That was one that I was really happy about. Do you want to introduce the clip? Don't slack which is one of the songs that you did with Anderson. Sure this is one that came out of I think. At this point we sort of look at we sort of gotten far along with just seeing and the other side. This was one of the earlier there though. We started this idea kind of early on. We actually were in the studio with Anderson and George Clinton because we've recorded atomic dog. Oh yeah kind of dog and like in George Clinton came in and like you brought us ban and we. It was like a full day of jam session with one of the greatest of all time. I mean I I remember just like it was is being in that room and the atmosphere was like okay. I'll I'll this once in a lifetime moment And I think that we were so inspired. And there's Clinton left the studio and it was like a mean Anderson State. It was like midnight and we stayed another three or four hours jamming. He was playing drums and I was playing bass and I knew he was a great incredible musician but the musicality when he was playing he was like we were worried this jamming in like making up reps and songs and like but by the way he was playing it was like he was writing music in his head. The same way was playing is different from from you know playing music. He'll he was like writing music at the same time he was playing and we just made up one really quick simple idea like base. I played his bass riff and he just played a little over that and we we play that for an hour and then we went home and then next day we listen back to everything we did and like we. All three of us were in the studio. Justin is sick and we made the whole song out of that network Financial Jane. Okay I ain't trying to smooth. Will they play week about face and be proud of you? Who a look and I think we're going to end with just saying also an original. Would one of you liked to tell us a little bit about what that was the most? I mean it was tough. Yeah I knew I knew lunatic was gonNA have an audible response to that one a headache. Yeah I mean when when we say you know I mean even referring to don't track I mean we had probably fifteen to twenty different versions of that song but specifically for just seeing I mean you're talking about a whole different kind of beast I mean don't slack ended up for instance ended up becoming the ending credits song because it's such an uplifting kind of funky you know it's a real groove and you know just saying i. It's the moment of the movie where the real message our hero. Poppy has to convey this wisdom. That she's come across and you know we also get to. The like Ludwig was saying the climax of our film where everyone's coming together All every genre dials. Yeah all these different styles of music which in a way kinda metaphorically just represent different walks of life you know Kinda come together and realize it. We have to put our message forth that you know we my all march to the beat of a different drum or cure a different melody in our head but we all can still just sing together so that was the bare bones of the idea but getting it to work. I think we've found that. And you know lewd correct me if I'm wrong but I think we've found that at that point in the movie. All music is wiped away and it's completely silent but you can still hear someone's heartbeat. I made a reference in the studio to like being in grade school and the way we used to make music in grade school was we would all bang on lunch tables and everybody would like try to rap or sing something to the be at lunchtime and I was talking about how it would be cool if the song started off and it just felt like people stomping and clapping and I think that led us to the the one John Row of music that I think a lot of the styles that are represented in our movie probably borrow from more than anything which is Gospel. You want this song to feel like a revival but we also had the task of getting the message across and then at the same time. We had the task of you know. There's there's two different recordings of this song. There's one where we wanted to feel like. Just a wonderful pop song and then the one that's actually in the film where we've incorporated every style of music. That's in the film. So every sort of tribe of troll gets to be represented and the music is still seamless. So then you start you start playing with like well. It can't be too fast but it can't be plus you know Because all the different styles have to be able to play along Within it and then it just became you started talking to the creators and the animators. And saying you know. When does this character come in and windows? The next character come in and it offered us the ability to say okay well. Mary J. Coming in right here. Her character comes in so this is where will transform the song into more of a funk groove and then okay okay now Kelly Clarkson's characters coming in. We have to go back and make it feel like a punchy song as well Or that it can at least be accompanied with all these different genres and the Wonderful Sarah. Aarons had such a big part in the writing of the song and helped write a melody that could go over any style of music so It's really true. I mean I think one of the difficult things about this song in particular was just what just explaining that. The song eighty to work with every genre so every tribe is represented throughout the song and there was two ways. You can write us on you could you? We could have written the song you know what trying to incorporate every johnny while writing the song but that would have been a great result at all so what we decided from? The start was like. Let's just try to make something really simple? Like try to write something very essential just like keep it as simple melody and simple message that everyone would understand. And then after we have the song we go back and arrange it in a way where every genres represented right. We basically wrote the song produced the song and then we had to remix the song. Whatever with every Johnny Zappa involved that was Kinda tasks over going to close out with just saying thank you both so much for joining us. We appreciate it. Thanks for having us.