Category Archives: special features.




Talented and inventive composer Holly Amber Church talks about being on  lockdown for COVID 19. 

I am guessing you are on a lockdown or at least part lockdown, how has this been for you and are you managing to write any new music at all?

I am in a lockdown situation in Los Angeles currently. It’s strange how quickly things turned and how this feels like the new “normal” now, but I am grateful to have a roof over my head, food to eat and healthy loved ones. I have still been writing some new music during all of this but I will admit that my productivity is not what it normally is as I am so distracted by the news or trying to order groceries online now (and mostly spending hours searching for Lysol or some other disinfectant online too).

What music have you been turning to mostly during the Pandemic and the lockdown?
I have mostly been turning to music right now that makes me happy or peaceful, so a lot of Disney music or Hawaiian music (and I also love some good vintage “tiki” music like Martin Denny and Arthur Lyman).

Have you been watching what we refer to as classic movies ,or are you taking this time to check out more recent releases and maybe looking at shows or films that normally you would not?

It’s interesting because I have been mostly turning to classic films that I love or have seen before right now because they make me happy and there’s a sense of comfort to them. Again, a lot of Disney and Muppets. I do have some more recent films that I would like to check out during this time though too.



Whats the food and supplies situation been like for you?
Getting food and supplies around LA has been interesting but not impossible. We’ve mostly been ordering groceries through delivery services or via Amazon but as many know that can be interesting and a lot of the time you get half of what you placed in your order because they were out of stock. I am just grateful to have whatever we can get.



As well as audio and visual entertainment have you been reading anything at all?
I did finish a book last week that I really enjoyed called “The Science of Monsters” by Kelly Florence and Meg Hafdahl.

Do you think that after this Virus has been beaten that the world and the people in it might be a little different in their behaviour towards each other and also the planet and animals?

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I hope that some good can come out of this virus in that we don’t take things or people for granted ever again. I think we’re also seeing the effect that people staying home more has had on the environment around the globe and I hope that people will take that to heart and we can think about our impact and what we can do in the future to be kinder to each other, the animals and the environment.


John Williams,  (no not that one)  film music and TV music collector, all round music lover, former editor and creator of Music From The Movies, contributor to Movie Music International. 



Are you in a lockdown or part lockdown situation?

As to the lockdown, it has been hard not being able to go to places you normally do and plan trips whatever, but I am grateful I am not working and don’t have any of the problems of keeping a job or wondering what will happen to it. That must be awful. We are all in this together and together we will come out the other side.


So, have you been listening to anything specific whilst the COVID 19 virus lockdown started?
Music wise, not as much as normal funnily enough. My usual weird blend of Vaughan Williams, Cilla Black, Francoise Hardy, Jack Jones. Jerry Goldsmith, Francis Lai, Michael Legrand and not forgetting Richard Harvey who’s music I couldn’t exist without.


What about TV or even dvd,s
Sadly, as always, the main TV Channels have let us down. BBC next week have THE ROBE, THOSE MAGNIFICENT MEN, THE VIKINGS again. I think they were on last Bank Holiday or Christmas. To think years ago BBC had a Film Purchasing Dept. Those were the days. So mostly Talking Pictures – where would we be without them. Some 60s Movies and TV series THE SAINT, THE AVENGERS, KOJAK that sort of thing. Nothing too modern please!



Have you found that you have been reading more?
Yes, reading a lot more actually, I read a lot anyway, and I think I read more than watch movies-so why have I got a big pile of DVDS sat in the corner? Film biographies. History of World War 2. Britain in the 20th Century. No novels at all? The, last novel I read was the POSEIDON ADVENTURE in about, what was it 1972. Enjoyed it though.


Do you think that our lives will alter even more when this virus eventually goes?

Being usually a cynic, I will go the other way and think when we come out of this nightmare, we will appreciate people, animals, whatever shops that will still be there and anything else that we come out with more of a positive attitude and feeling of love and friendship for our fellow man, and be more courteous to other people.




Godwin Borg, Owner KRONOS RECORDS, Film music lover. 

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Are you in Lockdown in Malta.


So far there is a partial lockdown that is not even compulsory, it is recommended though… especially for people over 65. Whoever can work from home has been urged to do so also. Rumour has it a full lockdown will be on soon since they are expecting the spike in around 2 weeks’ time. However, people cannot meet in groups bigger than 3 and all establishments that are not deemed offering necessary services (i.e. food stores) have been shut down already for a while.


Are you still planning future releases for Kronos.


Yes of course but at a more relaxed pace than normal. With the situation as is there is no point in scheduling release dates or rushing, since all mail and logistics has been rerouted through different channels (various airports closed and most airlines running on skeleton crew).

Whats been the music that you have been turning to the most in the pandemic.


Since I do work with music most of the time I’m really taking this time to do other things that need to be done that are not related to work  per se and to relax also but not listening to much music actually and I am surviving quite well, surprisingly enough.



Have you been watching what we call classic movies or are you checking out more recent releases?


Actually. I have been catching up on a few TV shows, just finished watching season 10 of Larry David’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, as always, pretty, pretty, pretty, pretty good. Still contemplating what to next catch up on.


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Has there been a mad rush at food stores, and are supplies ok?


Supermarkets and food stores are all open as per directive and all well stocked so far. No idea of how it will be in future since, living on an island we rely mostly on imported goods, especially these last couple of decades, so if supply from abroad keeps coming there should not be any mayor issues.


As well as audio and visual entertainment have you read anything new or returned to any old favourites.

Yes, actually finishing reading a book called “The Three Body Problem” book 1 of a brilliant trilogy by Cixin Liu and spending time in the garden. As I said I am taking this opportunity to wind down. I am making the best of what I can in those quasi-surreal times.



Do you think this awful virus will maybe change the way we behave towards each other and to the animal kingdom when it is over?


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Sadly not, man has proven to be the most inconsiderate and disrespectful creature on the planet, towards both fellow humans, other animals and to the planet itself. The situation is getting back to “normal” already in China, or so we are led to believe and already they are gearing towards rebooting their industry…. The West will follow suit… I have no doubt of that. I hope I am wrong and that mankind will have learnt something from this pandemic, how damaging and destructive have the last 200 years of human history been and by being “locked in” he will have had time to reflect, but just like a relapsing criminal I’m sure he will go back to his evil ways. Maybe some people really need to remain in lockdown for the rest of their days… Some will learn, most will not, man is a creature of habits, mostly bad ones…. I’m not being negative, only realistic. And I do really hope I am wrong. one of those rare situations I genuinely hope I am wrong.


Stephen Smith.

Film music collector, Morricone fan, writer, artist, musician. 



I am guessing you are in a lockdown situation or part lockdown. Hows it been for you.
Well, it’s run the gamut really and continues to do so. Initially I’d say you got to see the best and worst of people’s behaviour, it seems to have levelled out now to an extent, at least where I am. It’s allowing me to catch up with some things but preventing me from doing other things and to be honest, it’s these things that are more important. So yes, it’s a worry and the longer it continues the harder it will be.

What has been the music that you have been turning to the most in the pandemic.

Weirdly, my own. I played in a band for over a decade and amassed a lot of cassette recordings during that time (over 100 cassettes at last count). I’ve been using the time to transfer and edit these, keeping notes where warranted and just generally digging back into that time. Outside of that, I’ve been going for “the temple of my familiar”, music that I know will bring comfort in an uncomfortable time. So, in the soundtrack arena I’ve been going through my Morricone discs along with some Schifrin and Williams. Otherwise, it’s been searching out some old favourites by my 80’s favourites, Cocteau Twins, Joy Division, New Order and others. Much comfort derived from these old favourites.



Have you been watching what we call classic movies or are you checking out more recent releases and looking at things that normally you might not.


Again, for the most part I’m reverting to comfortable favourites, those films where you basically know every line before it comes up. It’s reassuring that some things remain I suppose. I also found myself digging into some 60’s/70’s based American history type films – the biopic of Mark Felt starring Liam Neeson, Spielberg’s The Post, which I’m afraid I cannot recommend, a drama devoid of drama and revisiting the infinitely superior All The Presidents Men and Parallax View.

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Whats the food and supply situation like for you.

Largely it’s ok. The panic buying of toilet rolls etc seems to have abated but of course the shelves are empty at certain sections. People are generally behaving themselves and respecting the safe distance, but there are exceptions that leave you scratching your head.





As well as audio and visual entertainment have you read anything new or returned to any old favourites.


I’ve been continuing with a series of books by Scott Mariani – action adventure stuff, a British Jack Reacher I’d say. Good way to pass a bit of time. Non-fiction wise I’ve just finished Adam Kay’s student doctor diaries, very timely that and illuminating. I’m now onto the book that details the lives (as much as is knows) of Jack the Ripper’s canonical five victims. Very good it is too, a fine idea to concentrate on the victims as people and largely leave the horror out of it. Valuable social history too. Oh, also just finished the wonderful Mark Lane’s last book. A true hero.


Do you think this awful virus will maybe change the way we behave towards each other and to the Animal Kingdom and environment when it is over?
I think the answer is yes, it will change things but not for the positive I’m sad to say. I think we are heading from uncertain times into very dark times. I hope I’m wrong.