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 Posted:   Dec 27, 2013 - 7:09 AM   
 By:   filmsonwax   (Member)

This may be a big request, but I'm looking to expand my knowledge of the golden age, so wondered if those inclined could tell me what they consider the definitive golden ages scores to check out?

Thanks in advance.

 
 Posted:   Dec 27, 2013 - 7:15 AM   
 By:   Stefan Huber   (Member)

How about these for a start:

Steiner - Gone With The Wind
Rozsa - Ben-Hur
Korngold - The Adventures Of Robin Hood
Waxman - Rebecca
Herrmann - Vertigo

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 27, 2013 - 8:28 AM   
 By:   Morricone   (Member)

Alfred Newman
HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME
WUTHERING HEIGHTS
CPAPTAIN FROM CASTILLE
HOW THE WEST WAS WON

 
 Posted:   Dec 27, 2013 - 8:33 AM   
 By:   Lokutus   (Member)

Jeeez! Do we really need another thread on this this week?
There was just one started only a few days ago!

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 27, 2013 - 8:40 AM   
 By:   Bill Finn   (Member)

How about these for a start:

Steiner - Gone With The Wind
Rozsa - Ben-Hur
Korngold - The Adventures Of Robin Hood
Waxman - Rebecca
Herrmann - Vertigo


That's a great start. Now to just add one by Newman and I believe it could be
perfect. How about "Captain From Castile"?

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 27, 2013 - 9:37 AM   
 By:   OnyaBirri   (Member)

This may be a big request, but I'm looking to expand my knowledge of the golden age, so wondered if those inclined could tell me what they consider the definitive golden ages scores to check out?

Thanks in advance.


I think you may get more meaningful responses if you can provide any clues as to to music that you may like or not like. For example, my favorite golden age scores tend to be film noirs, while others may prefer epics. There's a pretty wide gulf between, say, Korngold swashbuckler scores and Rozsa's noir scores.

 
 Posted:   Dec 27, 2013 - 9:43 AM   
 By:   Sirusjr   (Member)

I would suggest you start with some re-recording suites of themes like the Gerhardt CDs, some of which have been recently re-issued. This will give you a taste for some of the big composers so you can see what you like. The golden age music is really not just one big thing because there are so many different styles from the different composers. Depending on the composers or the scores you might find that the re-recordings sound better than the actual tapes. I recognize that many people really wanted the original tapes of certain scores because they are huge fans of the films but for someone who is starting to explore these old scores I would advise against going straight for the original recordings.

You will find that a number of the original recordings have some serious tape hiss, which might put you off at first (and you are lucky if that is all you have because some have some serious dithering problems, which can be best explained as a strange shaky noise that sounds off key).

Thankfully there have been some recent releases from the original tapes that have sounded quite lovely, though not all of these suggestions will be what I would consider strictly golden age.

Kritzerland releases that are still available:
The good thing about these is that you can listen to samples to see what you like. The ones I am linking to are strictly in the classic style I really love but there are a number of scores that are available in different styles you can explore as well. Other labels have put out some great golden age scores recently too but Kritzerland always does a great job selecting the samples.
Elmer Bernstein - The Buccaneer
http://www.kritzerland.com/buccaneer.htm
Dimitri Tiomkin and Bronislau Kaper - The Unforgiven/The Way West
http://www.kritzerland.com/un_west.htm
Elmer Bernstein - Fear Strikes out/The Tin Star
http://www.kritzerland.com/feartin.htm
Alfred Newman - The Counterfeit Traitor
http://www.kritzerland.com/counterfeit.htm
Elmer Bernstein - Drango
http://www.kritzerland.com/drango.htm
Elmer Bernstein - Summer and Smoke
http://www.kritzerland.com/sumSmoke.htm
Hugo Friedhofer - The Barbarian and the Geisha, Violent Saturday
http://www.kritzerland.com/barbarian_violent.htm
Leigh Harline - The Wayward Bus, The Enemy Below
http://www.kritzerland.com/wayward_enemy.htm
Hugo Friedhofer - The Rains of Ranchipur, Seven Cities of Gold
http://www.kritzerland.com/ranchipur.htm
Alfred Newman - David and Bathsheba
http://www.kritzerland.com/davidbath.htm
Alfred Newman - How Green Was My Valley
http://www.kritzerland.com/greenValley.htm
Laurence Rosenthal - The Miracle Worker
http://www.kritzerland.com/miracle.htm

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 27, 2013 - 9:46 AM   
 By:   Morricone   (Member)

Jeeez! Do we really need another thread on this this week?
There was just one started only a few days ago!


Yeah, then there is when you feel the urge to open up a thread that you feel is repetitious or has little interest for you and absolutely must make a comment (no matter what others feel about it) rather than start a thread that really interests you, one that would be more satisfying.

I hate when that happens.

 
 Posted:   Dec 27, 2013 - 1:02 PM   
 By:   filmsonwax   (Member)

This may be a big request, but I'm looking to expand my knowledge of the golden age, so wondered if those inclined could tell me what they consider the definitive golden ages scores to check out?

Thanks in advance.


I think you may get more meaningful responses if you can provide any clues as to to music that you may like or not like. For example, my favorite golden age scores tend to be film noirs, while others may prefer epics. There's a pretty wide gulf between, say, Korngold swashbuckler scores and Rozsa's noir scores.


I understand. I have the Gerhardt albums and some Newman, Steiner, Rozsa and Herrmann, but haven't gone much farther than that. But i really want to explore everything, especially as I plan to document the experience. I don't know whether it should be broken down by genre or composer?

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 27, 2013 - 1:40 PM   
 By:   OnyaBirri   (Member)


I understand. I have the Gerhardt albums and some Newman, Steiner, Rozsa and Herrmann, but haven't gone much farther than that. But i really want to explore everything, especially as I plan to document the experience. I don't know whether it should be broken down by genre or composer?


You can go either way. I find that exploring by genre/era tends to be more helpful to me than looking at the most famous works by a composer, but I may be hardwired differently.

Also, these categories are very broad. I don't really consider Herrmann to be a "golden age" composer; I think he is a key transitional figure, and while his earlier scores may sound more "golden agey," he was already breaking from those conventions while the studio system associated with the golden age was in place.

Based on what you have, can you tell us what you like or don't like so far?

 
 Posted:   Dec 28, 2013 - 5:02 AM   
 By:   Ag^Janus   (Member)

"Golden Age" being Hollywood and ~1935 < 1960? Or stylings? It is ambiguous.

Johnny Green - Raintree County

Miklos Rozsa - Double Indemity

Victor Young - Shane

Dmitri Tiomkin - Land Of The Pharaohs

Herbert Stothart - Dragon Seed

Alfred Newman - The Razor's Edge

Possibly there is any definitive film music that defines "Golden Age". Maybe definitive of a genre in the "Golden Age" using the composition style associated with that time.

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 28, 2013 - 2:39 PM   
 By:   waxmanman35   (Member)

I think it's preferable to survey the films involved rather than listening to suites or score recordings. If you find after watching a film that the music stands out for you, you may want to experience the music separately. I believe it will have more meaning that way. My interest in film music extends more than 50 years, and brand me a heretic, but film music is a subordinated art, and most scores simply don't travel very well when away from the film without having seen and having had reference to the film.

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 28, 2013 - 2:47 PM   
 By:   jkannry   (Member)

Robin Hood by Korngold

 
 Posted:   Dec 28, 2013 - 2:57 PM   
 By:   RoryR   (Member)

It all starts with KING KONG and ends on SUNSET BLVD.

 
 Posted:   Dec 28, 2013 - 3:09 PM   
 By:   Sirusjr   (Member)

I think it's preferable to survey the films involved rather than listening to suites or score recordings. If you find after watching a film that the music stands out for you, you may want to experience the music separately. I believe it will have more meaning that way. My interest in film music extends more than 50 years, and brand me a heretic, but film music is a subordinated art, and most scores simply don't travel very well when away from the film without having seen and having had reference to the film.

Though it is certainly true that some scores are better appreciated after watching the film, many of the golden age scores are perfectly enjoyable on their own and it can be hard to decide which films to watch. Though I did realize more why I hate The Treasure of the Sierra Madre score so much after i watched the film. I realized just why it is so damn difficult to listen to.

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 28, 2013 - 9:15 PM   
 By:   PFK   (Member)

I think it's preferable to survey the films involved rather than listening to suites or score recordings. If you find after watching a film that the music stands out for you, you may want to experience the music separately. I believe it will have more meaning that way. My interest in film music extends more than 50 years, and brand me a heretic, but film music is a subordinated art, and most scores simply don't travel very well when away from the film without having seen and having had reference to the film.

Though it is certainly true that some scores are better appreciated after watching the film, many of the golden age scores are perfectly enjoyable on their own and it can be hard to decide which films to watch. Though I did realize more why I hate The Treasure of the Sierra Madre score so much after i watched the film. I realized just why it is so damn difficult to listen to.





I have hundreds of LPs and CDs I enjoy and never saw the films. I agree that some scores might be better appreciated if you see the films first. But golden age scores like Ben Hur, El Cid, The Magnificent Seven, How The West Was Won, Robin Hood, Don Juan etc. stand as symphonies apart from their films. Over the past 50 years I've bought hundreds of LPs/CDs first, then later saw the films!

The Treasure of the Sierra Madre is hard to listen to? Not at my house. Max Steiner Rules! smile

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 28, 2013 - 9:52 PM   
 By:   waxmanman35   (Member)


I have hundreds of LPs and CDs I enjoy and never saw the films. I agree that some scores might be better appreciated if you see the films first. But golden age scores like Ben Hur, El Cid, The Magnificent Seven, How The West Was Won, Robin Hood, Don Juan etc. stand as symphonies apart from their films. Over the past 50 years I've bought hundreds of LPs/CDs first, then later saw the films!

The Treasure of the Sierra Madre is hard to listen to? Not at my house. Max Steiner Rules! smile


If you truly believe that they "stand as symphonies" then you have very elastic taste. Why aren't full scores performed in concert? Because a discerning audience wouldn't sit still for a collection of descriptive cues that lack overall musical form and cohesion and rely on related screen events. Film scores are only performed in concert as a gimmick in live accompaniment while the film is shown, or as short suites at Pops concerts. I love most of the scores you cited, but I'm curious what symphonies you would compare them to.

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 28, 2013 - 10:02 PM   
 By:   Bill Finn   (Member)

If you truly believe that they "stand as symphonies" then you have very elastic taste. Why aren't full scores performed in concert?

I tend to side with PFK about full score listening, but my reply was more directed to this question.
Perhaps more scores WOULD be played whole (or mostly whole) at concerts IF the parts were available? An orchestra cannont play anything without the music.

But I don't think much more is available for them than themes or sometime short suites.

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 28, 2013 - 10:14 PM   
 By:   pp312   (Member)

Personally I think waxmanman35 is dead on. Concert goers wouldn't sit still for what would seem to them meaningless noise--car chases, spaceship battles, fight and love scenes. They'd certainly recognise the musical language, but anything more than a short suite...nah.

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 28, 2013 - 10:26 PM   
 By:   PFK   (Member)

Guess I am pretty flexible! smile

By a concert symphony I mean a suite of the most listenable parts of a score. Perhaps Steiner's Don Juan as a 20 minute suite etc. Many golden age scores had a full orchestra and were very richly orchestrated such as Korngold's Robin Hood etc.

I do agree most classical collectors would not sit down for a film music concert, this type of music does not interest them. Plus, from day one, classical concert attendees have had a bias against film scores no mater how good they are.

In 2014 I will be a film score collector for 50 years, I could care less if nearly everyone does not like this type of music or even understand it! smile

 
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