composer, songwriter, producer
I compose music for film and television, write songs and play a wide range of eclectic instruments. Have a listen and drop a line.
Film and TV Projects
Half the Sky
I was brought in to do programming, sound creation and some additional writing on this remarkable project.
If you can, take a moment to learn more about the show.
Julius Styles (VG)
In collaboration with the other members of Studio Closh I helped create the soundtrack to Wesley Snipes’ iOS action game; Julius Styles: The International. Created by Lapland studios in Finland, Julius Styles features compelling puzzles that drive this secret agent adventure. Available now for the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.
Songwriting and Bands
Shortwave Sunshine is my songwriting moniker. Just started the push to finish a very different second album that is tentatively titled Comfort in Your Sadness. Hope to release it later in 2015 or early 2016.
Hearing Gabriel Hays, the genial frontman of New York-based rockers Shortwave Sunshine, deliver the surreal, oddly infectious chorus to “Your Car is on Fire” or the sweetly mellow keyboard line and vocal melody of “The Breakers,” he seems like a natural bandleader. But like Tom Waits, Warren Zevon and Dr. John, Hays’ musical background includes years spent as a sideman.
“I had been playing in several projects (Akoya, The Batterie, Mieka Pauley) as a keyboardist and sometimes co-songwriter,” states Hays. “But I realized I wanted to do the kind of album that wasn’t going to happen with the other projects I was playing with. From there I began writing demos…trying out my singing voice. When I realized I had enough material to start playing out, I started recruiting some of my favorite musicians to play with. I knew right away that I’d love to have Naren Rauch on guitar and Nikhil Yerawadekar on bass. Their sensibility was similar to mine (we all loved the Beatles) yet all had varied backgrounds.”
“After doing some shows in Summer and Fall of 2008 we started to develop those demos towards a sound that was a natural mesh of everyone’s playing,” continues Hays. “They felt natural. We brought Mike Riddleberger in on drums in December 2008 and knew right away it was a great fit. We’d played with a few other great and in demand NYC drummers but with Mike, his vibe and feel fit the music perfectly.”
Shortwave Sunshine’s newest release, The Breakers, makes good on the band’s Beatles influence with the kind of sharp but easygoing melodies and ambitious arrangements of the Fab Four’s later albums. From the hypnotic “Lost in New York” to the start-stop riffage of “Save $” and the noisy breakdown of the title track, The Breakers is a sonic mini-adventure that brandishes a relatively bright outlook and tight performances that can be attributed in part to the album’s “live” recording process, completed almost entirely in two days at the Bunker with engineer Aaron Nevezie.
Shortwave Sunshine celebrated the album’s release with a performance at the Living Room in Manhattan, and the band is currently slated to play Spike Hill on August 14th. While The Breakers captures the band’s tunefulness and musical chops, Shortwave Sunshine’s chemistry is best viewed from the stage, where the band embodies the musical capabilities and unironic outlook that is lacking in Brooklyn’s populous indie rock scene. Most of Shortwave Sunshine’s contemporaries could learn much Hays’ enjoyment of performing and of life in general. “I recommend everyone take a week off from Facebook, Twitter, Four-square, etc.” states Hays. “It’ll make you feel good.”
Featuring members from: Antibalas, Tamarama, Akoya, Quintus, King Expressers and Ravens & Chimes.
A Mighty Trickle (echoes) explores how the ping pong of delay and echo effects alter our perception of texture, melody and rhythm. Performed by the Jack Quartet on May 1st, 2011 at Loewe Theatre, New York University
Ads and Promos
REESE’S – Marvels Avengers
with Bill Markt at Jingle Punks
As an only child growing up in Santa Fe, NM, Gabriel was always drawn to stories, movies, games and places where his imagination could run wild. He explored music, visual art, theatre, anything he could. But it wasn’t until his high school drama teacher asked him to write an original score for Tom Stoppard’s Dogg’s Hamlet Cahoot’s Macbeth that he first had the idea that his medium for telling stories could be composing.
Now living in Los Angeles, Gabriel is a composer, arranger and producer who has written music for shows on FOX, ABC, NBC, Disney, Disney XD, MTV, Showtime, PBS, TNT, Bravo, History and others. He has composed the music for several independent feature films and many shorts including The Walking Dead Escape, Beyond, Patch Town and The Last Words.
He has written the music for commercial campaigns by Reese’s Pieces, Lenovo, the NBA and Toyota.
Gabriel is also a songwriter under the moniker Shortwave Sunshine and is currently working on a follow-up to the successful debut ep The Breakers.
Gabriel enjoys spending his free time with his wife Holly and their two daughters Sadie and Gemma.
gabehays AT gmail dot com