The music supervisor of the hit Netflix live-action adaption One Piece has opened up about creating its iconic score.
Toko Nagata revealed no “outside music” was used as they crafted the sound of the East Blue. Eiicho Oda has played a crucial role in its adaptation, and both he and the team didn’t want to use songs from “our world”, because it would pull the viewer out of “the world that they worked so hard” to mould.
In the place of well-known pop songs are original pieces, written by Sonya Belousova and Giona Ostinelli. “[In] the show, as fans know, they travel to different locations, and even though this was only eight episodes, there’s a lot of movement within the show,” Nagata explained to Collider.
“So we had to define, with each section, with each location, there’s a different story arc, different villains, different adversaries that they come across. We just worked to define, within each little world or location that we went to, what the sound was gonna be for that section.”
Showrunners Matt Owens and Steve Maeda had a vision of what each location’s unique sound should be like. One storyline that is set in a mobster, “seedy” setting required “a bunch of jazz, big band” type music. “They really took that and took it to another level and made it unique to the show,” said Nagata.
Other crucial musical moments include a section Maeda describes as “a high-class thriller, horror-type story arc,” the music to which includes some operatic vocals, strings, and classical music.
“I think the music for that one turned out so well because it’s just whimsical and creepy and unsettling,” said Nagata. “Finding the sound for that was really cool, and that was just overall very fun to work with a team to figure out what that would be.”