Open Secret: The Score

by robin hilton

This week I finished all the music for the ‘Open Secret’ documentary, which will be debuting later this month at the Hot Docs Documentary Film Festival in Toronto. I ended up writing and recording 21 songs for the film and have a few samples below.

Screenshot from the film 'Open Secret'

‘Open Secret’ is about a guy who, when he was 18 years old, discovered that everything he’d been brought up to believe about himself was a lie. His parents weren’t who they said they were. His brothers and sisters weren’t who they said they were, and everyone in the town where he lived knew the truth, but kept it from him.

“Anxious and Fearful”
This is a short little piece coming out of an interview with someone who said they were too afraid to tell the truth.


“The Phone Call”
This is a longer piece that had to go through a number of transitions and mood shifts. It goes with a pretty intense phone call in the movie.


“The High School Reunion”
This was actually one of the rejected songs I did. But I thought it was a nice little piece. As the title suggests, it was for a scene at a high school reunion. I ended up writing four different songs for this scene before the director and editor heard one they thought really worked. But this one is still my favorite.

Film: Open Secret

This is the latest funding trailer for the documentary Open Secret, produced and directed by Steve Lickteig. You can follow details of the production at our new Facebook page for the film.

National Geographic: Photo Camp

This promo for a kids photography camp hosted by National Geographic was produced and edited by Jim Webb. Music by Robin Hilton.

It Was Over Before We Began

The album, written and recorded in one month, is called It Was Over Before We Began (never a more appropriate album title), and the band is Golden Days (Robin Hilton, Mike Katzif, Meg Ruddick).

Cover for It Was Over Before We Began

This was produced as part of the RPM Challenge, an annual invitation to musicians worldwide to produce an entire album from scratch in February. Previous RPM Challenges led to 2009’s Another Roadside Attraction, these songs from 2008, and these from 2007.

Download the entire album (Right-click or control-click to save to your computer)

01. It Was Over Before We Began

02. Year Of Dreams

03. Mind Control

04. Pig

05. Come Tomorrow

06. It’s A Weakness

07. Captain Kid

08. Bone Fragments

09. Scene

Support ‘Open Secret’

Another Roadside Attraction

by robin hilton

After four very short weeks, I’ve finished my CD for this year’s RPM Challenge (to write and record an entire album in one month). It’s called “Another Roadside Attraction.”

cover for another roadside attraction

You can download the entire album, or listen to individual tracks below.

I apologize in advance for some of the horribly painful singing. And given more time, I’d do a lot of things differently with the production. But there are some moments where it almost sounds like I know what I’m doing. All in all, I’m just glad I made the completely artificial and meaningless deadline to get it all done in a month:

1. Intro

2. Stay

3. I’ve Got Bad News

4. Rabbit

5. Happy Birthday To Me

6. Dirt

7. The Holidays

8. A Strange And Beautiful World

9. Another Roadside Attraction

10. The End

Two New Vocal Pieces

by robin hilton

Far, far from perfect, of course. But I cranked them out very quickly:

“The End” – My dog was lying next to me when I recorded the vocals on this one and you can hear her sighing after the first verse. I think she was really, really bored with it:

“A Strange And Beautiful World” – Even if I had the best singer in the world doing this one, I’d still process the hell out of the voice. I like noise.