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Volume 11

Number 2

Spring 2009

 

Editor: Roger Hall

Contributing Writers:

Jeffrey Dane

Steven A. Kennedy

Steve Vertlieb


 

Main Titles

Latest News

Ratings and FMR Issues

The Sammy Film Music Awards

Essential Film Scores

Film Focus

Best of the Month

Capsule Reviews

Soundtrack and Compilation Reviews

Recommended DVDs and Books

Film Music Links

Your comments or questions are welcome.
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Latest News

 

KEN DARBY (1909-1992)

Read about this multi-talented singer, songwriter,
arranger, and choral director at

A Centennial Tribute to Ken Darby

 


FILM SCORE LISTOMANIA!

Recently several large lists that include film scores have been published.

The first one was a list of the Top 100 film scores as described in The Hollywood Reporter.

This is the top ten film scores in the Top 100, as chosen by film industry people:

1. THE GODFATHER -- Nino Rota
2. JAWS -- John Williams
3. STAR WARS -- John Williams
4. THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE UGLY -- Ennio Morricone
5. PSYCHO -- Bernard Herrmann
6. E.T. - THE EXTRA-TERRESTRIAL -- John Williams
7. LAWRENCE OF ARABIA -- Maurice Jarre
8. GONE WITH THE WIND -- Max Steiner
9. RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK -- John Williams
10. CHINATOWN -- Jerry Goldsmith

Obviously, these folks are big John Williams fans with 4 of the 10 by him.

 

Another list appeared in Classic FM magazine (May 2009). This issue has the "2009 Hall of Fame" with 300 classical works chosen by radio listeners in the UK, and includes these film scores (arranged by their number on the list of 300 works):

285: HARRY POTTER AND THE GOBLET OF FIRE -- Patrick Doyle
243: RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK -- John Williams
233: ROMEO AND JULIET -- Craig Armstrong
215: JURASSIC PARK -- John Williams
165: WARSAW CONCERTO -- Richard Addinsell
157: HARRY POTTER AND THE PHILOSOPHER'S STONE -- John Williams
148: STAR WARS -- John Williams
145: SAVING PRIVATE RYAN -- John Williams
137: PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL -- Claus Badelt
119: GLADIATOR -- Hans Zimmer
116: PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: DEAD MAN'S CHEST -- Hans Zimmer
58: LADIES IN LAVENDER -- Nigel Hess
21: THE LORD OF THE RINGS: FELLOWSHIP OF THE RING -- Howard Shore
20: ASHOKAN FAREWELL (from Tv servies, THE CIVIL WAR) -- Jay Ungar

What an odd list of film scores! There is only one vintage score -- WARSAW CONCERTO (not really a "concerto") from the 1940s film, BRIEF ENCOUNTER. All the rest are film scores from the 1970s onward. Once again John Williams is well repesented with 6 out of 15 film scores on this list. But where are all those great classic film scores from the 1930s, '40's, '50s and 60's?

Do you agree with the choices on these two lists?

What would be your favorite film scores?

Here's your chance to list them.

Send your list of Top Ten favorite film scores (in any order) to:

Top Ten Film Scores

 

Read Roger Hall's list of

100 Essential Film Scores

 


 

RETRO REVIEWS


Celebrating the 50th anniversaries of two classic films from 1959:

Ben-Hur: The Essential Miklós Rózsa

BEN-HUR: The Essential Miklos Rozsa (2 CDs)

 

 


SOME LIKE IT HOT (CD soundtrack)



In Remembrance of Maurice Jarre
(1924 - 2009)

Christopher Palmer with Maurice Jarre (on right)
during recording of A PASSAGE TO INDIA
[From CD -- DOCTOR ZHIVAGO: The Classic Film Music
of Maurice Jarre
, Silva America, 1995]

 

Sadly, another of filmdom's most revered film composers
has left us at the age of 84.

Maurice Jarre was one of the most respected film composers.
He composed over 200 scores during his long career,
from his first film score in 1952 until his last one in 2001.

He received three Oscars for major films directed by David Lean:
LAWRENCE OF ARABIA (1962)
DOCTOR ZHIVAGO (1965)
A PASSAGE TO INDIA (1984)

In an interview, Jarre quoted his favorite director, David Lean, as saying:

"Maurice, you are the doctor of the film. It is true that music can help a scene run more smoothly, but it has to be a good film for the music to have its best effect. Music can cure a minor sickness
but it cannot help the terminally ill!"

R.I.P. Maurice Jarre, dedicated doctor of films.

 

 

A few recommended releases of his music...

 

The Essential Maurice Jarre Film Collection

The Essential Maurice Jarre Film Music Collection (2 CDs, 26 tracks)

 

 

Film Music Masterworks

Film Music By Maurice Jarre (Budget CD, 10 tracks)

 

Lean by Jarre: A Musical  Tribute To Sir David Lean

Lean By Jarre:
A Musical Tribute to Sir David Lean (CD/ DVD)

 

 

Read more about Maurice Jarre at

Wikipedia

 

 


HERRMANN'S PSYCHO FILM SCORE TO BE AUCTIONED

Contributing Writer Steve Vertlieb has sent in the following announcement...

 

Bonhams Fine Art Auctioneers and Valuers will be auctioning off Bernard Herrmann's original manuscript for PSYCHO on
24 March 2009.

BERNARD HERRMANN Music and Film: Scores, manuscripts and books sold on behalf of Norma Herrmann

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Autograph full score of his music for Alfred Hitchcock's film Psycho, including the Murder in the Shower scene ('The Murder') and the 'Prelude', the first page signed and dated "Bernard Herrmann/ Jan 12 - Feb 12/ 60", written between January and February 1960 and reassembled by the composer in 1968 to form his concert suite Psycho: A Narrative for Orchestra.

Autograph full score of his music for Alfred Hitchcock's film Psycho, including the Murder in the Shower scene ('The Murder') and the 'Prelude', the first page signed and dated "Bernard Herrmann/ Jan 12 - Feb 12/ 60", written between January and February 1960 and reassembled by the composer in 1968 to form his concert suite Psycho: A Narrative for Orchestra, the present manuscript comprising:

Part I

(Cue 1) "1. 'Psycho' Prelude", incorporating "Flight": autograph manuscript of the first page of the original score in black ink, with paste-overs for bars 63-78, 109-110 and 129-131 (conclusion), timings in red ballpoint (up to one minute 57 seconds), later marked up for the suite in red felt-tip pen ("Pt I"), including suite revisions to the final three bars in red and blue felt-tip pen, 5 pages


(Cue 2) "2. The City": photocopy reworked in red ballpoint, plus timings in red ballpoint, paste-over autograph title (also originally reading "The City"), later marked-up for the suite in felt-tip pen, one page

(Cue 10) "10. The Rainstorm", incorporating "Flight", "Flight B", "Prelude", and "Flight": comprising a twice-repeated photocopy of the 'Prelude', paste-over titles (see note below), reworked in red ballpoint at bars 51-74, 93-96, and 209-216, adapted for the suite in red and blue felt-tip pen, 3 pages


Part II

(Cue 14) "14. The Madhouse": autograph manuscript of the original score in black ink, with paste-overs for bars 18-19, adapted for the suite in red felt-tip pen and inscribed on the blank recto "Psycho (Pt II)" and at the head "(Pt II)", one page

(Cue 17) "17. The Murder": autograph manuscript of the original score in black ink, adapted for the suite in blue felt-tip pen, 2 pages

(Cue 21) "21. The Water": autograph manuscript of the original score in black ink, with revisions (rests scraped out and replaced), timings in red ballpoint, 2 pages


In all 20 pages, on Ricordi music paper and photocopies thereof, partly taped together with some consequent discolouring affecting the edges and versos, 4to, mostly 12 January to 12 February 1960 [with further alterations made in 1968]

Estimate: £30,000 - 40,000

Sale 16761 -
Printed Books, Mansucripts, Music & Photographs
24 March 2009
New Bond Street
Lot No. 198

Bonhams Fine Art Auctioneers

 

Update (25 March 2009):

LONDON (AP) — A British auction house says it was unable to sell the score to Alfred Hitchcock's bloodcurdling movie "Psycho."

Bonhams says the 20-page work was withdrawn from a sale Tuesday after failing to make its minimum price. Minimums are typically set at or just below the auctioneer's low estimate — in this case, 30,000 pounds ($44,000).

The music was composed by Bernard Herrmann to accompany Hitchcock's 1960 thriller. The manuscript carries the notes to the slashing, shrieking violin sounds that play when a knife-wielding killer bursts in on actress Janet Leigh as she showers in the Bates Motel.

The auctioneer had hoped to sell the piece for up to 40,000 pounds ($56,000).

Bonhams said Wednesday the score would be returned to Herrmann's third wife, Norma.

 


 

BEST FILM MUSIC OF THE YEAR

 


 

Categories:

Best Gold Age Soundtracks
Best Silver Age Soundtracks
Best Bronze Age Soundtracks
Best Compilation CDs
Best DVDs
Best Film Book
Best Album Producers
Best Record Labels

Click on this link to read our reviewers picks:

Best Film Music for 2008


 

Film Music Books

Only a few copies remain of
the updated 3rd edition of
A Guide to Film Music: Songs and Scores

When you order this guide you will also receive a Free CD-R with
film music examples.

For more details, click on this link:

Film Composers and Soundtracks

 

 

See a list of other film music books at the

FMR Home Page

 

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Ratings and FMR Issues

 

 

FMR rating system for CDs and DVDs:

**** = Superlative (Highest Recommendation)

***1/2 = Very Good

*** = Good

**1/2 = Okay

** = Barely Passable

* = Poor

The Special Merit CDs are chosen at any time during a month for outstanding overall production of a soundtrack or compilation.

The Editor's Choice - Best of the Month designation is for those CDs that are singled out for their excellence. They are chosen anytime within a given month and may not be chosen every month.

2009 (Volume 11)

Number 1 (Winter)



2008
(Volume 10)

Number 1 (Winter)

Number 2 (Spring)

Number 3 (Summer)

Number 4 (Fall)

2007 (Volume 9)

Index to All Reviews (January - December)

Number 1 (January - February)

Number 2 (March - April)

Number 3 (May - June)

Number 4 (July - August)

Number 5 (September - October)

Number 6 (November - December)

 

2006 (Volume 8)

Index to All Reviews (January - December)

Number 1 (January - February)

Number 2 (March - April)

Number 3 (May - June)

Number 4 (July - August)

Number 5 (September - October)

Number 6 (November - December)

 

1998 - 2005

(Volumes 1 - 7, No longer available)

 


The Sammy Film Music Awards

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The 21st Annual Sammy Awards

for film music CDs

have been announced

here

 

 

See also

20th Annual Sammy Awards

19th Annual Sammy Awards

18th Annual Sammy Awards

The Sammy Awards (1988 - 2007)

 

Return to top of page

 


 

Essential Film Scores of the 20th Century

 

See the list at

100 Essential Film Scores

 

 

 

 


 

Film Focus

 

The series devoted to a composer and one major film score

 

No. 1: Hugo Friedhofer and
THE BEST YEARS OF OUR LIVES

 

 

 

 

No. 2: Miklós Rózsa and
PLYMOUTH ADVENTURE

 

 

 

 

 

 

No. 3: Max Steiner and
KING KONG

 

 

 

 

 

 

No. 4: Elmer Bernstein and
THE TEN COMMANDMENTS


 

 

 

 

 

 

No. 5: Bernard Herrmann and VERTIGO

 

 

 

 

No. 6: Dimitri Tiomkin and
IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

Best of the Month for 2009

 

 

Best of the Month for January

THE CURIOUS CASE OF BENJAMIN BUTTON --
music by Alexandre Desplat

 

 

 

 

 

Best of the Month for February

THE CHARGE OF THE LIGHT BRIGADE --
music by Max Steiner

 

 

 


Best of the Month for March

TIME AFTER TIME --
music by Miklos Rozsa

 

 

 

 

 

Best of the Month for April

A JOHNNY MANDEL TRIO
(3 CD Box Set)

 

 

 

 

 

 

TWILIGHT ZONE: THE MOVIE
music by Jerry Goldsmith

 

 

 

 


 

Soundtrack and Compilation Reviews
for 2009

 

 

NEW!

ANGELS & DEMONS

 

 

 

 

 

NEW!

CULT CUTS:
MUSIC FROM THE MODERN CINEMA

 

 

 

 

 

NEW!

DAVID RAKSIN AT M-G-M
(5 CD Box Set)

 

 

 

 

 


THE DEAD POOL -- music by Lalo Schifrin

 

 

 

 

 


DISCOVER FILM MUSIC
(2 CD compilation with 165 page booklet)

 

 

 

 

http://www.amazon.com/Film-Music-Ralph-Rainger-Thanks/dp/B001N05A24/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1237737713&sr=8-3

 

NEW!

THE FILM MUSIC OF RALPH RAINGER

 

 

 

 

 

MAX AND HELEN & THE OASIS --
music by Christopher Young

 

 

 

 

 

NEW!

THE MUSIC OF BATMAN (compilation)

 

 

 

 

 

STAR CRASH -- music by John Barry

 

 

 

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Recommended DVDs and Books

 

CAPTAIN ABU RAED

 

 

THE FORD AT FOX COLLECTION:
THE ESSENTIAL JOHN FORD


DRUMS ALONG THE MOHAWK
THE GRAPES OF WRATH
HOW GREEN WAS MY VALLEY
MY DARLING CLEMENTINE
FRONTIER MARSHAL
BECOMING JOHN FORD

Capsule review: This set is a bit disappointing, especially the awkwardly filmed and edited documentary, "Becoming John Ford." Commentary by Julie Kirgo and Nick Redman on DRUMS ALONG THE MOHAWK is very good. Film transfers are clean and sharp, but with great scores by David Buttolph and Alfred Newman, these classic films deserve to have isolated music tracks. Rating: ***1/2

THE FALL OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE
2 Disc Deluxe Edition --
music by Dimitri Tiomkin

Rating: ****

 

 

THE JOHNNY CARSON SHOW
(Guests: Dimitri Tiomkin & Dr. Samuel Hoffmann)

Rating: ***1/2

 

 

DVDs with Isolated Scores

 

The Day the Earth Stood Still (Two-Disc Special Edition)

THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL (1951)
(2 Disc Special Edition)

Music by Bernard Herrmann
Commentary by film & music historians John Morgan,
Steven Smith, William Stromberg, and Nick Redman

Rating:
****

 

GARDEN OF EVIL (1954)
(Included in Fox WESTERN CLASSICS box set)


Music by Bernard Herrmann
Commentary by John Morgan, Nick Redman, Steven Smith, William Stromberg

Rating: ****

 

The Robe


THE ROBE (1953)
(Special Edition)


music by Alfred Newman
Commentary by
film composer David Newman,
film historians Jon Burlingame, Julie Kirgo, and Nick Redman

Rating: ****

 

 

 

Recommended Books

 

NEW!

A History of Film Music
by Mervyn Cooke

 

 

 

 

 

Alex North's A Streetcar Named Desire: A Film Score Guide (Scarecrow Film Score Guides)

NEW!

Alex North's A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE:
A Film Score Guide
by Annette Davison

 

 

 

 

The Soundtracks of Woody Allen:
A Complete Guide to the Songs and Music in Every Film, 1969-2005
by Adam Harvey

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Film Music Links

 

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Film Music Links

 


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Film Music Review

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