Khari Mateen is the multi-instrumentalist behind music score for ‘Really Love’

Khari Mateen is the multi-instrumentalist behind music score for 'Really Love'
Photo courtesy of Tia Thompson.

Khari Mateen is a multi-instrumentalist, producer, and composer from Bakersfield, California. Mateen grew up in a very musically talented family and started his journey early. He moved to Philadelphia at 17 to work with The Roots. Mateen’s latest work is the score for the film “Really Love,” which is currently streaming on Netflix. He revealed who his inspirations are and the process of composing for films.

What was it like composing music for your first film?

I hadn’t done any film up to that point. It was more so just production work on different artists at the time. Mark Webber, first-time director at that time, gave me a shot. They listened to a lot of music that I had created already and then they just made the CD. I honestly didn’t know what I was doing, but I felt it. I felt the topic. It was about the health care system and I just dove headfirst into the film. It was received really well.

How do you create music for films?

Essentially, if there aren’t enough resources to hire other musicians, I will play it myself. So we’re talking cello, bass, guitar, piano, drums, any programming that needs to be done or any other exhilarate percussion or auxiliary. I even have a trumpet that I play, sometimes I’m terrible at it, but I get it done. If I can’t, then I’ll go to other musicians, but it’s just a tactic I use to keep costs down.

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