SONGLAND: Audrey Morrissey and Dave Stewart on How the Show Finds Its Songwriters - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote

SONGLAND: Audrey Morrissey and Dave Stewart on How the Show Finds Its Songwriters

April 27, 2020 by  

Songland Songs Audrey Morrissey Dave Stewart

SONGLAND — Screening — Pictured: (l-r) Dave Stewart, Executive Producer; Audrey Morrissey, Executive Producer at The Sunset Tower Hotel, Hollywood, Calif. on May 16, 2019 — (Photo by: Chris Haston/NBC)

SONGLAND’s second season has an eclectic group of superstars trying to find their next hit, from country superstars (Lady Antebellum, Martina McBride, and Florida Georgia Line) to Latin pop (Luis Fonsi) to Broadway vets (Ben Platt), but they all have one thing in common: they’re looking for a great song.

As the show headed into its sophomore season, “our process [in finding songs] didn’t change all that much, but we refined it, definitely, after season 1,” executive producer Audrey Morrissey explains in the video below. “Basically, the process is this: we cast for songs…Then, once we would book each artist for the episodes, we would go through the songs, and come up with a bucket of songs that we feel [might fit them.]”

“It tends to be a bigger than smaller bucket, because who are we to say what is right for Usher or what is right for Florida Georgia Line?” she continues. “We asked them at the beginning is there anything we should be aware of, because you’re likely going in a new direction; we shouldn’t just be relying on what you’ve already put out. Based on all those notes, we send [their teams], anybody who’s creatively involved with this person [what we’ve picked so they can] vet all these songs. They say, ‘You know, out of this batch we only like one. Send us more in this direction.’ So we go back and forth until their teams select the songs.”

But two factors are important in that, executive producer Dave Stewart notes: The artist (and show staple writer/producers Ester Dean, Shane McAnally, and Ryan Tedder) won’t hear the tune until it’s performed live, and the songwriters themselves don’t know who they’re pitching to.

SONGLAND, Season Premiere, Monday, April 13, 10/9c, NBC


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