Tree Adams is an award-winning, internationally renowned composer. Over the past 25 years, he has amassed an enormous body of work in film, television, and video games. He loves the art of storytelling in music and the process of collaborating with filmmakers. As a multi-instrumentalist and an alchemist in the studio, Tree draws from a wide range of different sonic elements in creating a unique palette for each project. He has composed scores for pretty much every genre imaginable- drama, action, comedy, horror, documentary, and more, He enjoys the evolution and the inspiration that comes with each new challenge.
Tree’s recent projects run the gamut: an epic sci-fi score for Jason Rothenberg’s The 100 (CW), which is rife with dark soundscape, Middle Eastern colors, and orchestral themes. Warner Bros/Water Tower has released five soundtracks of the score for the series. For NCIS: New Orleans (CBS), Tree layers contemporary high-energy procedural pulses and textures with New Orleans-inflected blues/jazz ensemble elements and a pinch of voodoo. In 2020, Tree scored RJ Cutler’s documentary film, Belushi (Showtime). Lethal Weapon (FOX) called for hip-hop-driven car chases, comedic cop banter, and tender moments underscoring a range of relationships. Ken Biller’s international espionage thriller, Legends (TNT) featured a more minimalist approach combining solo cello and electronic soundscapes. For John Hertzfeld’s redemption film Reach Me (Millennium Films), a traditional orchestral score. A gritty rock score for Californication (Showtime), an urgent cerebral score for the crime drama, Perception (TNT) a high-energy electronica score for action/thriller Run. A dusty western score for Swelter and gritty hip hop grooves for Denis Leary and Bob Fisher’s comedy Sirens (USA).
Tree grew up in New York City in a family with a deep musical heritage. His grandfather, Seymour Solomon was a fiddle player in the army during World War II who went on to found Vanguard Records along with his brother, Maynard Solomon. Maynard was a distinguished musicologist who penned seminal biographies of Beethoven and Mozart. Tree’s great uncle, Gerald Geldbloom was a first chair violinist in the Boston Symphony orchestra. Tree’s father, Chicken Hirsh, is now an active jazz drummer. Years ago, he played with blues legends Lightnin’ Hopkins and Sonny Terry and Brownie Mcghee, and then eventually went on to join the ‘60s rock band, Country Joe and The Fish. From as early as he can remember, Tree sang and studied classical piano and the recorder with his grandmother, Ruth. She introduced him to the music of Wagner, Prokofiev, and Shostakovich and this is perhaps where the aspect of storytelling in music took hold for him. Tree went on to play flute and clarinet in the school orchestra before discovering the guitar. In high school, Tree focused on becoming a singer-songwriter. In college, Tree continued to study music theory and jazz at the University of Pennsylvania, where he formed a rock band called The Hatters. The Hatters toured relentlessly for the subsequent seven years or so (often 300 days a year) releasing several albums on Atlantic records along the way. They got to play alongside bands like the Allman Brothers, Tribe Called Quest, King Sunny Ade and Jimmy Cliff. While in the studio recording the band’s last album, Tree had the opportunity to produce an end title song for a studio feature film and he had his first taste of music as an applied art. He found the process of working to picture exciting and intriguing and when his band dissolved later that year, Tree set out on a new course as a composer.
Since then, Tree has enjoyed collaborating with filmmakers to craft music with storytelling. He says that typically, a composition forms in his head before he even picks up an instrument and often, the centerpiece of an idea will evolve by experimenting with a sound or a piece of gear in the studio in the initial stages of the process. Although his primary skills as a performer are as a singer and a guitarist, he employs a much more expansive palette with his adventures in film and television.
Tree lives in Los Angeles with his wife and kids. He has a writing studio at home and a separate recording facility, The Treehouse next door where he and his small team record and mix.