Tom Howe and Marcus Mumford (‘Ted Lasso’ composers): ‘The hope is what keeps you going’ [EXCLUSIVE VIDEO INTERVIEW]

“The message of the show is that the hope is what keeps you going,” reflects Tom Howe about “Ted Lasso.” His musical partner on the series Marcus Mumford continues, “We really leaned into the idea of organic instrumentation and recording everything for real. Comedy shows on TV tend to have a lot of synthetic instruments. We were determined to make it organic. Kind of like an album.” Watch our exclusive video interview above with the two composers.

In “Ted Lasso” for Apple TV+, the optimistic Ted (Jason Sudeikis) adapts to the rules of soccer and English culture in his new job as coach of an English Premiere League Football club. Mumford reveals, “I had a long-lasting relationship with Jason. We talked a lot about the character and what he was trying to achieve. We were in the head of Ted before we started.”

Howe and Mumford worked together on the score for the series and the theme song, titled ‘Heaven Knows I’ve Tried.’ Howe explains, “The theme song was actually the thing that came first. I went to visit Marcus last January. We sat down and didn’t have a lot of footage. We decided to start with a song and see if the theme could come from that. It really set us on the path of what the music for the show was going to be about. Normally those are written at the end. Doing the song first kind of became the toneful DNA of the sound and the tune we were going to carry forward.”

Mumford adds, “Honestly, there was relief of not having to stress out about the lyrics for this show. This is partly why we got the theme song out of the way.”

Mumford has won two Grammys for his work with Mumford and Sons, including Best Album in 2013 for “Babel.” He confesses, “In my day job, I’m focusing on lyrics and singing every night. There are a lot of words flying around. Melody hopefully breathes longevity into a good lyric. I just felt like the show was going to make me a better musician. And I hope it has. It wasn’t songwriting as much as music. I just enjoyed the training for me of learning how melody effects story and what you can do instrumentally and melodically to manipulate the viewer along the way you want them to go.”

Howe recalls a particular scene where melody was used to support the story. He says, “The darts scene has this build that happens over time. That’s a great example where the organic sounds and heart of the music is reflected in the acting and the dialogue and the script. The music doesn’t do too much, but it just does enough.”

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