A secret weapon for your cues

Evocative, atmospheric, and textured pro guitar recordings tailor-made for the unique needs of screen composers.

  • Risk-free money-back guarantee
  • Dozens of happy past clients
  • Resonators, mandolins, banjo, and uke too

My background

 I’m offering screen composers all over the world the chance to elevate their sound without ever stepping foot outside their studio.

I’ve spent years touring the world with major artists, performed in the hit musical Come From Away, recorded at studios from NYC to Nashville, and played on dozens of critically acclaimed albums and scores.

Expertise

My goal is to create layered and nuanced parts for your cues, filling it out where it’s needed and pulling back at all the right spots to make sure that the composition and narrative is what shines through.

Instruments:

Electric & acoustic guitar
Mandolin
Banjo
Ukelele
Bouzouki
Dobro
Resonator
And more

Four simple steps. One amazing result.

1. Contact
Fill out the form below to get a quote and book a one-on-one call. We’ll discuss your music, ideas and any goals you may have.

2. Confirm
Your session will be confirmed as soon as you upload your tracks and submit a payment.

3. Listen
You’ll be sent a stereo mix of your track with the new parts added. If you have any revisions, I’ll take care of them free of charge.

4. Download​
As soon as you’re happy with the way things sound, you’ll be able to download your individual tracks and mix them into your session. It’s that easy.

My Portfolio

Film/TV

Posner/Bhatia

Acoustics guitars, Resonator Mandolin, Bouzoukie

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Schwartz/Posner

Electric Guitars, Acoustic Guitar

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Posner/Bhatia

Mandolins

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Solos (albums)

Adrian Nation

Electric Slide Guitar, Electric Guitar, Mandolin, Tenor Banjo

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Aviva Chernick

Mandolin, Acoustic Guitar

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Birds of Chicago

Electric Guitar

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Textural playing (albums)

Shawna Caspi

Electric Guitar, Resonator Guitar

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Birds of Chicago

Electric guitar

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Desiree Dorion

Electric Guitars

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Testimonials

“Everything I get back from Joel is super well recorded, extremely tasteful, and always serving the larger picture of my cues which, in turn, are only aiming to serve the story. Super easy to work with, always on time and on budget….I can’t recommend Joel enough.”

Ari Posner
Screen Composer

“Joel is a one-of-a-kind musician, and he takes great care in his ability to create. His warm, unique approach to music is unmatched. He’s able to fill the space and add layers effortlessly.”

Jessica Mitchell
Singer/songwriter

“Joel Schwartz became a collaborator on the film I was scoring at the moment when I felt too enclosed in my compositional bubble. He gave me feedback, called me with ideas, and talked me through what he thought could be fun. He turned the work back into play. The opportunity to work with musicians is why I got into this career and Joel is the best of them!”

Iva Delic
Screen Composer

“I’m so glad I found Joel. He’s a world-class musician, he has uncanny creative instincts and he’s a true pro who always delivers high-quality recordings in a timely fashion.”

Chris Burke-Gaffney
Producer

“As a guitarist, Joel contributes great-sounding, technically flawless tracks—delivered with tremendous feel, impeccable rhythm and beautiful tone—to songs of all genres.”

Donna Grantis
Guitarist (Prince)

“It was like getting six session players for the price of one!

Shawna Caspi
Singer/songwriter

“Thankfully we are now at a time in technology where we can hire real players again instead of using sample libraries. Joel is the best “guitar synthesizer” in my studio. I send him a mockup demo and then, like magic, tracks come back that I can just drop into my session. On time. On budget. 

 

Amin Bhatia
Film Composers

“Not only is he technically an amazing player, he is immensely creative and what I would call a ‘craftsman.’ The incredible guitars and instruments he has in his arsenal, the way he’s recording them with top-end mics and gear, and of course the quality of his playing make him really special.”

Luke McMaster
Singer/Songwriter

“Joel brings bullseye instincts, huge ears and exacting standards to every project he’s involved in…every note is there for a reason, every sound makes perfect sense and everyone is happy at the end of the session. Work with him and you’ll see what I mean.”
 
Andrea Koziol
Singer/songwriter

Risk-Free Guarantee

Trusting anyone with your music is a big deal. That’s why I’ll do everything I can to make sure you’re beyond happy with your session.

I’ve played on hundreds of tracks for countless happy clients, but in the event that you’re not 100% satisfied with my work, I’ll provide you with a full refund.

Contact

FAQ

Some composers want to work with VSTs. Yes they are convenient and they can yield passable results, but the problem is guitar and fretted instrument VSTs don’t sound great, don’t offer much variety or nuance, aren’t creative, and always a distant second best.

That’s where I come in.

I’ve recorded for screen composers my entire career and I like to think of myself as their ‘secrete weapon’. I offer creativity, commitment, and professional quality to the studio work I do. I deliver very high-quality results for your track quickly, easily, and strive to make a fun and creative experience for you the composer

To start a project, get in touch with me by filling out the form below. You’ll be able to tell me a bit about your project to get the ball rolling, and book a call to talk one on one.

To confirm your session, all you need to do is make a payment using a credit card.

After a payment is made, you will receive an email with details on how to upload your files.

Once the session is complete, I’ll email you a stereo rough mix with the new parts added. Most projects get approved in the first round, but if you do need revisions, I’ll be happy to make them. Once everything sounds good, I’ll send you individual files that are ready to mix.

No. Everything I send you is 100% royalty-free.

If you need help exporting your files, I will provide easy instructions for your DAW.

 48khz 24bit .wav files, exported from zero (or session start). I can provide a detailed and easy-to-use upload guide if required.

Session files should be .wav, but I can work in a range of samples rates (44.1khz to 96khz). The recommended format is

We do not! Please export just the .wav files from your session.

No. My specialty is coming up with unique, supportive parts. If you happen to have a notated chart, lead sheet, or Nashville number chart, you’re welcome to send it along.

I put all my resources into the projects I take on (professional studio, tons of gear, many instruments) to make sure cues sounds as good as they can. It’s not cheap, but I also strive to make things work for you.

No. My firm policy is to never share your music with anyone during the recording process. Unless I have your written permission to post or share, your music will be kept strictly confidential.

Once you receive your files, simply drag them into your DAW and they will be ready to be mixed. If you have any questions, you’re welcome to reach out for more detailed instructions.

Click the green message button in the bottom right corner and I’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

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Clients

Joel Schwartz is a seasoned guitarist and multi-instrumentalist. With 20 years of experience as a professional musician, he records instrumental parts for folk, Americana, roots, blues, and indie-rock musicians and composers.

Joel has toured and/or recorded with Birds of Chicago, Amelia Curran, Matthew and Jill Barber, Great Lake Swimmers, Royal Wood, Jessica Mitchell, Aviva Chernick, Andrea Koziol, Dione Taylor, Lydia Persaud, Jadea Kelly, and many others.

The recordings he’s played on have won, or been nominated for numerous awards including the Junos, Canadian Folk Music Awards, Western Canadian Folk Music Awards, and Ontario Folk Music Awards. 

What best describes your work: