31 digitally remastered recordings, including previously unreleased material. Of special interest to Bassey fans is her version of 'Mr. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang' originally recorded by Dionne Warwick for Thunderball, but both versions never used as soundtrack.
There was also a 30th Anniversary Edition (without the "Limited").
It was estimated recently that half the world's population has seen a James Bond movie. Based on that figure, it's likely that just about everybody who communicates without tom-toms has heard the James Bond music - it's instantly recognizable theme and titles.
The compelling nature of this music has been an essential ingedient in the makeup of the 007 movies. We've been gratified that audiences have found it exciting to see Bond films over the years, but we've worked to make sure that the music is thrilling as well.
I believe you will find that this new collection offers as visual a listening experience as music is able to provide - the Bond films literally come alive in your imagination.
But most of all, I am pleased that this collection provides a splendid tribute to John Barry and all the outstanding musicians involved over the past thirty years.
As uttered 30 years ago by actor Sean Connery in the movie "Dr. No," those words ushered in what was to become the most famous signature theme music in motion picture history. Oscar-winning British composer John Barry's exciting rock-&-jazz creation, "The James Bond Theme," not only helped to propel the character of James Bond into one of the most famous film heroes ever, it set the tone for much of cinema and television's soundtrack music to follow. While the Beatles were turning rock-&-roll on its head, Barry's innovative use of electric guitar through his brass-and-percussion orchestrations established a style that musically defined the 1960s.
British Secret Service Agent James Bond 007 was the creation of novelist lan Fleming. A former British naval intelligence officer, Fleming wrote 12 novels and two collections of short stories between 1952 and 1964 detailing the exploits of his fictional hero. The James Bond movies have been produced since 1962, collectively grossing an estimated $1-billion worldwide. One of the reasons for their tremendous success is a formula that deftly interweaves action, suspense, humor, sex, and high technology. Never has there been a Bond movie that didn't feature gorgeous women, humor in the face of danger, an assortment of exotic weaponry and mechanical gadgetry, suggested sexual liaisons, an evil villain and his murderous henchmen (and women), larger-than-life plots, beautiful foreign locales, futuristic set designs, plenty of action in the way of hand to-hand combat, high-calibre firepower, key chase or "stunt" scenes, and, of course, a dramatic musical score.
So popular were the first few films that, by 1966, Bondmania had become a worldwide phenomenon. Licensed James Bond merchandise flooded stores and included board games, die-cast cars, toys, bath towels, trading cards, rings, watches, apparel, posters, and soundtrack albums by every orchestra imaginable.
All in all, the mid-60s saw a Bond-inspired "secret agent craze" that had the entertainment, advertising and merchandising industries - not to mention the public-ablaze in excitement.
It was in October of 1962 that the first theatrical James Bond movie,
premiered. Produced via United Artists by Albert R. Broccoli and Harry Saltzman on a budget of roughly $1-million, the movie starred Scottish-born actor Sean Connery as Bond, Ursula Andress as Honey Rider and Joseph Wiseman as Dr. No. Bernard Lee and Lois Maxwell appeared as British Intelligence head M and his secretary, Miss Moneypenny (roles that the two actors would reprise throughout the bulk of the UA series). The script was co-written by Richard Maibaum, who would also become part of the Bond "team," returning in the future to author or co-author all but three of the UA productions.
"Dr. No" is clearly the most low-key of the Bond films, although, for its time, its plot was perhaps more fantastic than most detective or spy dramas. Directed by Terence Young, the story follows Bond's investigation into the murder of a Jamaica-based British agent, which ultimately leads to an insidious plot to disrupt U.S. space launches.
It was a Friday night phone call from Noel Rodgers, head of music at United Artists, that put John Barry to work on the two-minute composition that would become "The James Bond Theme" for the "Dr. No" soundtrack. The composer - then hot in England with his John Barry Seven jazz group - only knew of the Bond character from its appearance in a London newspaper comic strip. For a fee of less than $1000, without the benefit of first viewing the movie, and borrowing from his own previously-recorded "Bea's Knees" instrumental, Barry composed the track on short notice. And what a track it was. The tune hit #13 on the U.K. charts, and Barry would be called back to score eleven James Bond movies over the course of the next three decades.
the second Bond film, is a cold war thriller involving Bond's mission to acquire a valuable Russian decoding machine in Istanbul. Directed by Young from Maibaum's screenplay, this 1963 release neatly balances danger, romance, suspense, story and character development, and action. A train car battle between Bond and S.P.E.C.T.R.E. (Special Executive for Counterintelligence, Terrorism, Revenge, and Extortion) assassin Red Grant (Robert Shaw) stands as, arguably, one of the best "fight scenes" in movie history. A sequence in a gypsy camp - both sexy and violent - is also highly memorable.
This movie marks the beginning of the Bond "hardware." Unlike its overwhelming presence in many of the later films, the gadgetry in this production - such as Grant's wristwatch-style strangle wire, Bond's multi-purpose attache case, and Rosa Klebb's dagger-tipped shoe - were colorful touches naturally woven into the movie's fine tapestry.
Barry's "Russia" score exudes a romantic, flavorful mood, and offers the debut of Bond's secondary signature theme, "007," a sort of telegraph-sounding mission-in-progress accompaniment that re-emerges in three later adventures, Thunderball," "Diamonds Are Forever" and "Moonraker." The title theme music in "From Russia With Love" (which reached #20 on the U.K. charts) is an instrumental. In "Russia," however, a vocal rendition - written by Lionel Bart and performed by Matt Monro - is used both within the film story and again during the movie's end credits.
I've moved this part to the song Goldfinger.
roared across the cinema screens of the world with all the force and bravura that its title implies. Now UA truly had a presold audience in its grasp. The success of "Goldfinger" had paved an easy route to the box office for the next Bond, and "Thunderball" was it.
Kevin McClory, who co-authored the original "Thunderball" story (with Fleming and screenwriter Jack Whittingham), produced the film in conjunction with Broccoli/Saltzman, Shot largely in the Bahamas, this fourth Bond carries a breezy air of confidence and dare as it pits 007 against a S.P.E.C.T.R.E. plot to hold the world hostage with two hijacked atom bombs.
Musically, John Barry's score for "Thunderball" is romantic and frequently evocative of the movie's Bahamian setting and underwater elements. "The James Bond Theme" is nicely woven through portions of the score, and the "007" theme makes a welcome encore, particularly in its adaptation as a thunderous action piece used most memorably in Bond's battle with Largo.
The title song, "Thunderball," was a strong follow-up to the theme from "Goldfinger," and, as belted out with great gusto by Tom Jones, earned itself a place on the U.S. charts for six weeks in 1965 and reached #35 in the U.K. Interestingly, it was a song that almost didn't get written. Early on in the production Leslie Bricusse had been set to write the lyrics. But then a decision was made to change the movie's title song to "Mr. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang" in honor of the nickname given to Bond in Japan and elsewhere around the world. So Bricusse and Barry wrote the piece, and it was recorded by Dionne Warwick. Barry then scored the picture, utilizing the title theme as his musical model. At the last minute, however, the producers decided that "Thunderball" should be the title song after all. Wfth Bricusse now tied up on another project, Don Black was hired to pen the new lyrics in association with Barry. Consequently, Barry's song, "Thunderball," opens the picture, while his unrelated, eminently stylish "Mr. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang" instrumental compositions highlight the score.
In 1967, Sean Connery announced that he'd had enough of playing 007 and that his fifth Bond,
would be his last. Consequently, an all-out effort was made to pack this one full. Advance PR on the picture stated it clearly: James Bond will die. James Bond will marry. James Bond will become Japanese. James Bond will finally meet his heretofore faceless nemesis, Ernst Stavro Blofeld.
Barry scored a lovely interpretation of the movie's Japanese theme, as well as appropriately exciting action overtures (the climactic one almost recognizable as a quick-paced variation on the "007" theme). The title song, performed by Nancy Sinatra (a hot commodity on the heels of "These Boots Are Made For Walking"), offers a beautiful, sweeping melody and gentle, thought-provoking lyrics penned by Bricusse, that helped it climb to #11 on the U.K. charts.
Comparing their search for a new James Bond to the hunt for an actress to play Scarlett O'Hara, Broccoli and Saltzman finally chose an unknown - Australian model George Lazenby. His co-stars would be Diana Rigg (best known as the talented amateur sleuth Emma Peel in TV's "The Avengers") and Telly Savalas (taking over the Blofeld role from Twice" 's Donald Pleasence).
was released in 1969. This sixth entry is considered by many to be one of the series' best. Veteran Bond editor Peter Hunt took over directing chores here and shaped Richard Maibaum's fine screenplay into an incredibly taut and thrilling adventure film. It clearly departed from the trend of the series and took a stand of its own.
The story involves Bond's efforts to track down Blofeld, who, it is eventually discovered, is about to threaten the world with a new kind of biological warfare from his allergy clinic in the Swiss Alps. This movie, which is the one true love story in the series, relies on a concrete plot and interesting characters, with the gadgetry now back to near-nil. There are two tremendously exciting snowbound chase sequences - one on skis and one on bobsleds. The fight scenes are also electrifying, particularly one in which Bond faces off with a thug in a hotel room, and another (in the pre-title sequence) where Bond battles a murderous gang on the beach.
John Barry is in top form with "OHMSS." The score is alive and vibrant, backing up an instrumental title piece that is one of the most exciting action accompaniments in the series. (Leslie Bricusse had written lyrics for the title that were never used.) While the theme's most memorable use in the movie is during the ski chase scenes, it serves as a great title number in its marking of time as images from the previous Bond movies travel through an hour glass. Another stand-out is the charming love ballad written by Barry with lyricist Hal David, "We Have All The Time In The World." It is sung by Louis Armstrong with wonderful warmth and sincerity.
I've moved this part to the song Diamonds Are Forever.
Roger Moore's Bond debut was 1973's
directed by Hamilton and written by Tom Mankiewicz (who'd co-scripted "Diamonds" with Maibaum). Here, 007 is up against the heroin smuggling Mr. Big (Yaphet Kotto) and his voodoo cult. The movie continues "Diamond" 's crash-'em and smash-'em approach to adventure as Bond outruns a redneck sheriff (Clifton James) in a Florida bayous boat chase, and pretends to be a flying instructor to a little old lady, obliterating their plane as he evades the baddies.
The first rock group to perform a Bond theme - Paul McCartney and Wings - bangs out a rollicking title song, which maintained a #2 spot on the U.S. charts for three weeks during the summer of 73 (it peaked at #9 in England). The composition also earned an Oscar nomination for Best Song. The Beatles' own George Martin composed the hip-edged score that complements the movie's visual goings on.
was released in 1974. Christopher Lee plays Scaramanga, a high-priced hit man whose goal is to harness the power of the sun for his own private solar weapon. Britt Ekland and Maud Adams are the Bond girls this time out, and Herve Villechaize is Scaramanga's assistant, Nick Nack. Hamilton returned to direct the Maibaum/Mankiewicz-written film.
The title tune, written by Don Black, is performed by Scottish pop singer Lulu.
written by Maibaum with Christopher Wood and directed by "Twice" 's Lewis Gilbert - put Bond back in form. Essentially, this is a very polished formula picture - replete with recycled material - that secured itself a strong, new following for the Moore films.
While the Bond pre-title sequences had always been designed as clever attention-grabbers, the audience-pleasing ski-jump stunt that opens this movie set a new standard that each subsequent film would struggle to measure up to. The action sequences in "Spy" are slicker than those in the previous two, such as the big chase involving a sleek Lotus Esprit, which ditches an enemy helicopter by plunging into the sea, where it converts into an armed sub.
Marvin Hamlisch wrote the lively score, and - with Carole Bayer Sager - created a #2 U.S. and #7 U.K. smash (and media catch phrase) in "Nobody Does It Better," the title tune sung by Carly Simon. Explained Hamlisch, "It was time that Bond be pretentious enough and vain enough to have a song written about him."
I've moved this part to the song Moonraker.
With Maibaum back at the typewriter (with co-writer Michael G. Wilson) and former Bond editor John Glen at the helm,
marked the return of the more serious James Bond movie. This 1981 release was the 12th Bond from UA and Cubby Broccoli (Saltzman had departed following "Golden Gun"). Although the movie includes a few comical scenes with Q and a throwaway with Blofeld, everything is played straight and down to earth. The story involves Bond's mission to recover a stolen missile-launch transmitter, and a young Greek woman's thirst for revenge for the murder of her parents. Carole Bouquet is well cast as the vengeful Melina, while Topol's spirited Columbo triggers fond memories of "Russia" 's wonderful Pedro Armendariz.
The title sequence here is unusual for a Bond movie. For the first time, the singer performs on-screen, and it's completely understandable: It's the attractive Sheena Easton who sings the very appealing Bill Conti/Michael Leeson song within Maurice Binder's title montage. (In the wake of Easton's hit "Morning Train" that same year - the tune was originally titled "9 to 5" but changed in America to avoid confusion with Dolly Parton's hit of the same name - "For Your Eyes Only" took off and climbed to #4 and #8 on the U.S. and U.K. charts respectively). Conti's largely disco-styled score feels more like a celebration of the music of the moment than a score of durability.
Released in the summer of 1983 was the 13th UA Bond,
Joining Moore was "Golden Gun" 's Maud Adams, Louis Jourdan, Kristina Wayborn, and Robert Brown replacing the late Bernard Lee as M.
All in all, the movie is quite a mixed bag. It sports a truly thrilling teaser sequence featuring Bond's aerial evasion of a heat-seeking missile in a tiny one-man jet. Following the main titles, the movie continues to earn high marks with a terrific scene in which a British agent, disguised as a circus clown, is stalked by assassins. A fair amount of suspense is created much later in the movie when Bond, similarly disguised, struggles to stop an Atomic bomb from exploding. The movie's final stretch is an incredible chain of non-stop action sequences as Bond chases the villainous Kamal Khan (Jourdan) on train, plane and automobile.
Barry's "Octopussy" score handles all the proceedings adequately and includes a nice rendition of the "James Bond Theme." Notably, the provocative title turns up nowhere in the theme song (the only Bond movie in which this happens).
From the "Nobody Does It Better" school of promo lines comes the movie's title song, "All Time High," with lyrics by Tim Rice and performed by Rita Coolidge. It's a pleasant, catchy tune that works fine for the movie and broke the Top 40 on the U.S. charts.
James Bond returned - and so did Roger Moore, for one last time - in UA's 14th Bond,
Christopher Walken plays Max Zorin, a wealthy industrialist with a hidden past who embarks on a plot to destroy the microchip-producing Silicon Valley. Grace Jones - in a casting nod to the youth of 1985 - portrays his lanky but powerful assistant, May Day. Patrick Macnee, debonair star of TVs "Avengers," brings class and a fine touch of humor to the movie in his portrayal of Bond's sidekick, Sir Godfrey Tibbett.
Released in 1985, "A View To A Kill" is actually one of the better Moore episodes, a basically serious adventure story that offers some suspense and an edge of danger. Parti-cularly memorable is an exciting climax in which Bond rescues Stacey (Tanya Roberts) and defeats Zorin atop San Francisco's Golden Gate Bridge.
What does help this movie a great deal is the exciting score created by John Barry. An energetic action tune that recurs throughout is structurally similar to the theme from "OHMSS," and is quite effective. Duran Duran's dynamic title vocal catapulted "A View To A Kill" (the song) into the #1 and #2 spots on the U.S. and U.K. charts respectively, making it the biggest hit of any Bond title theme.
- the last Fleming title to be used for a movie - signalled yet another change in the direction of the series. This was mostly due to the new actor signed to play James Bond: Timothy Dalton. A great fan of Connery's rendering of 007, Dalton's approach to the character was deadly serious. Prior to production, he returned to the original source - lan Fleming - in order to study his part. A Shakespearean actor, the British Dalton brings enormous believability and charisma to the role, arguably becoming the best Bond since Connery.
Released in 1987, "The Living Daylights" is a complex and intriguing thriller that emerges as one of the best Bond movies since "OHMSS." Written by Maibaum and Wilson, the plot concerns a diamonds-for-opium scheme involving a phony KGB defection and assassination operation.
Barry is once again in top form with a heart-racing score and a catchy, upbeat title song performed by the Norwegian rock band, a-ha. "The Living Daylights" peaked at #5 on the U.K. charts.
Nearing the end of its third decade on the-big screen, James Bond surprised just about everyone with its 16th UA presentation. With Dalton back as 007,
(an original title) is the most serious, hard-edged Bond to date, of even the dry, irony-laced kind of humor associated with Connery in the early adventures. Released in 1989, this film finds Bond operating outside of the Secret Service on a personal vendetta. The object of his revenge is Latin American drug lord Franz Sanchez (Robert Davi), who has maimed Bond's DEA pal Felix Leiter ("LALD" 's David Hedison) and murdered Letter's bride.
Michael Kamen's score to "Licence To Kill" puts a fresh twist on the "James Bond Theme" and provides the requisite Latin flavor. Gladys Knight performed the title track which made its way to #6 on the English charts.
It's been 30 years since cinema's introduction of James Bond 007. Although the Cold War has ended and tensions are more relaxed across the globe, you can be certain that somewhere in the world there is a villainous plot afoot. However, you can be just as certain that in the nick of time, and to the reassuring strains of John Barry's electric guitar...
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The author, Danny Biederman, is a movie, book, magazine and television writer. A spy thriller buff since the early '60s, Biederman produced and directed a documentary on the making of the James Bond movie, "Diamonds Are Forever," and wrote "The 007 Sex Quiz" for Playboy's special 1983 Bond issue.
Memorabilia from Danny Beiderman's personal collection has been utilized for illustrations appearing herein.
James Bond fans everywhere, and of every caliber, have ample cause to celebrate the release of the second disc of this collection. Its contents have something for all of them - from commonly avail-able but deserving tracks, to familiar but previously unreleased tracks, to those tracks which have not only never been released before, but were never even heard of and were never even known to exist.
The songs described in the latter category were "discovered" in the EMI vaults as initial investi-gations into this collection were made. Though the tape quality for each of the tracks was uniformly good for songs recorded over 25 years ago, the documentation on the studio logs was not. (Most all of these tracks were recorded at Cine-Tele Studios in London, a favorite studio of composer John Barry.) Bond scholars will have to draw their own conclusions for the reasons why some of these tracks exist to begin with, and why until now they have not seen release.
Disc Two of this collection starts off with John Barry's rerecorded version of the "James Bond Theme." Unlike the movie version, which featured The Monty Norman Orchestra, this version is performed by The John Barry Orchestra. Barry's version was released in England at the time cinemagoers first met James Bond, in 1962's Dr. No. Though lacking the fullness and worldwide familiarity of the Norman Orchestra version (which leads off Disc One in this set), Barry's version holds its own with its drive and measured intensity.
From Russia With Love, the second Bond film, yielded what has been described as the "alternate" James Bond theme, "007." In testament to its durability, it has shown up, rerecorded and sometimes retitled, in virtually every MGM/UA Bond film since then, and even on some of the later albums. The original incarnation is included here.
From 1964's Goldfinger, arguably the most popular Bond film ever, comes five "rarities." By far the rarest is the version of the title track sung by its co-composer, Anthony Newley. At the time, Newley, along with his partner Leslie Bricusse, was in the vanguard of young, British songsmiths then enjoying initial international acclaim. Barry was also in that group, and it was only natural that some collaboration would ensue (Barry had previously collaborated with another charter member of that young songwriter's set, Lionel Bart, for the From Russia With Love theme).
Newley's rendition, recorded May 14, 1964, puts it several months ahead of the Shirley Bassey version that was eventually used- Newley actually recorded it twice: a jazzy version which we have included, and an orchestrated version much closer to Bassey's. Neither has been released before. At this late date, it would be sheer specu-lation to postulate why neither was used for the film, though in retrospect it is easy to observe they lack the strident fury of Shirley Bassey's version.
Also for unknown reasons, the Goldfinger soundtrack album released in the U.S., which had the distinction of hitting number one on the Billboard chart, was released minus four songs recorded for that film. Barry was composing, arranging and scoring films at a fantastic and unheard of rate in 1964-1966, without any lapse in quality. The From Russia With Love album had been packed with tracks, all exceptional. The previously unreleased Goldfinger tracks, "Golden Giri," "Death of Tilly," "The Laser Beam" and "Pussy Galore's Flying Circus" are equally exceptional. One can only guess why they were excluded from the final soundtrack.
Rumors abound regarding the origin of the song, "Mr. Kiss-Kiss, Bang-Bang." The story goes that Japanese moviegoers had christened Bond with this nickname for obvious reasons, and that Bond film producers Albert R. Broccoli and Harry Saltzman (or Barry, depending on your source) wanted it to be the title of the Bond follow-up film to Goldfinger. The next Bond film, however, turned out to be Thunderball.
This did not stop Barry from composing (and reportedly collaborating with Bricusse and Newley again on lyrics) the theme, and recording two versions of it, one sung by Dionne Warwick, the other by Shirley Bassey. Both tracks were passed over in favor of the properly-titled "Thunderball" theme sung by Tom Jones, with music by Barry and lyrics by Don Black, though the song figured intently in the film and the released soundtrack as instrumental. To reward the many Bondphiles who have perpetuated the "Mr. Kiss-Kiss, Bang-Bang" rumors these many years, we have included both vocal versions. If any James Bond soundtrack album failed to fully capture the film's terrific score (aside from Dr. No), Thunderball is the major culprit. It is the only Barry-composed Bond sound-track not to include the climactic, explosive music required in every Bond film for the scenes in which the villain gets his comeuppance. What's more, aside from one track, "Death of Fiona" (who is not even the major villain of Thunderball), all of the tracks on the Thunderball album are from the first half of the film.
It was our pleasure to discover John Barry's original, unissued Thunderball tracks in EMI's vaults. From them we have included a "suite" featuring the major portions of the Thunderball soundtrack which were excluded from the album, primarily the second half of the film score. The listener should of course be aware that the track entitled "Death of Largo" is the climactic music for the film, and it is so distinctive and memorable that Bond fans everywhere will recognize it. Apart from their importance to Thunderball, these tracks again demonstrate that John Barry's Oscar-winning skills as a composer, arranger, and conductor were to some degree bred in his Bond scores. There are not even any rumors available to describe the next selection included. The Cine-Tele studio logbook cryptically describes it as: "You Only Live Twice (demo title)". It was recorded on January 1, 1966, to be the theme for the Bond film after Thunderball - and that is the extent of our knowledge about it. Even the casual listener will instantly know that it is completely different from the eventual theme: different music, different lyrics, different singer.
Following the revelations of the previous selections, if s almost anticlimactic to include the well-known and remembered song, "All the Time In the World," sung by the beloved Louis Armstrong, and featured in 1969's On Her Majesty's Secret Service. Like From Russia With Love, O.H.M.S.S. opened with an instrumental theme, and closed with a vocal - although in the latter film, they were two different songs entirely. Since most fans remember Armstrong's vocal from the film more than they do its actual theme, we have included it here.
It should be apparent to the reader (and the listener) that the selections in this second disc emphasize the early films, when "Bondmania" was at its zenith and the series picked up its initial fans.
It should also be apparent to the listener that the Bond films are much in debt to the talents of composer John Barry. His music helped shape the cinematic character of James Bond as much as any of the actors who've portrayed the part. The Bond days of Connery and Moore are over, but it is every fan's wish that the Bond days of John Barry will continue.
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