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 Posted:   Apr 9, 2017 - 12:51 PM   
 By:   bretbravo   (Member)

As I am sure this topic has been brought up before, it's been awhile since I've seen or read any recent news regarding the status of this Oscar winning movie and it's soundtrack CD getting an upgrade to an expanded re-mastered edition. It's truly a shame that such an award winning film with a spectacular soundtrack has not been given the attention it deserves to have an expanded edition featuring the entire score, not unlike the fantastic job done for "Goodbye, Mr. Chips" that was done a few years ago. What is currently available is a severely edited, poorly mastered CD that does not do justice to this famous and well loved movie. The source tapes are probably in sad shape given that this score has only been available in it's current state, but I would love to hear anything in regards to any attention being given to this soundtrack or if it's truly a lost cause. Given it's Oscar award status and history I would assume someone with archival interests would want to pursue this. Any hope out there?

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 9, 2017 - 1:01 PM   
 By:   bretbravo   (Member)

I know musicals are not the "Big" focus on this site, though there have been some very interesting selections given to re-mastering and expanded treatment here in the past. Just kind of curious if there is any interest in "Oliver" to give it the attention it deserves and if the source material is in any kind of shape to warrant the effort.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 9, 2017 - 1:09 PM   
 By:   Morricone   (Member)

OLIVER! came from Columbia and was released on the Colgems label. If you don't know by now Columbia, the minor major studio, has the worst reputation about saving their filmscores, tapes or anything for that matter. Add to that Sony, who now owns them, has a download only policy so we are screwed. Not to say it is impossible. CASINO ROYALE was cobbled together from various sources, but it is all uphill.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 9, 2017 - 1:26 PM   
 By:   TacktheCobbler   (Member)

Expanding on Morricone's reply, I think the tapes for Oliver are lost as the TT blu-ray had a music-and-effects track rather than a regular isolated track for the score.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 9, 2017 - 1:31 PM   
 By:   OnyaBirri   (Member)

Mildly off-topic, but did you know that a very young Steve Marriott - pre-Small Faces - played the Artful Dodger in the London production of Oliver?

Here he is:

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 9, 2017 - 1:42 PM   
 By:   joec   (Member)

Expanding on Morricone's reply, I think the tapes for Oliver are lost as the TT blu-ray had a music-and-effects track rather than a regular isolated track for the score.

Yes, disappointing that the isolated tracks are loaded with sound effects. Still, an expansion can be possible with some selections such as the REVIEWING THE SITUATION reprise, which comes through clearly with no effects (that I heard) and was not included in the original LP. Also the Overture, Intermission, exit music and complete main title sequence. There is much great underscore in OLIVER!. A musical as complex as this must have probably produced a great deal of alternate and unused cues. It is sad to think that it is all gone.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 9, 2017 - 9:38 PM   
 By:   bretbravo   (Member)

Well, just as I thought. There had been discussion about this subject a few years ago as there was interest in getting a re-mastered and complete version of this musical on CD but that all original source material was rumored to be ruined with age or destroyed by the studio but nobody was sure at the time what the situation was. I agree that it is truly sad that a film's score of this stature is lost forever and all that remains is the butchered CD version. "Oliver" is not alone in that sense as there are many other worthwhile scores lost for the ages but that still is a tragedy. Thank you for the update. At least now I know.

 
 Posted:   Apr 10, 2017 - 8:16 AM   
 By:   SoundScope   (Member)

Absolutely agree here...
I was ragging about this years ago and finally recorded and edited my own "expanded" version from the Laser Disc (at the time). I love this score and John Green's arrangements and conducting... and it is indeed a shame that it does not have a better representation available to the public.

I also feel the same way about SOUTH PACIFIC. Soooooooo much music, underscoring and different arrangements from this film and we are stuck with the cheezy cd that's available.

Sad to say, but I fear it's a lost cause on both counts as most of us that are interested are a vanishing breed!

Hope springs eternal. smile

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 10, 2017 - 8:17 AM   
 By:   Joe Caps   (Member)

If this helps, when I was remastering the film for a special laserdisc release, I wanted to do a music only track, but Columbia/Sony could find nothing for this title.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 10, 2017 - 8:52 AM   
 By:   Spence   (Member)

I absolutely love and adore this musical. Try watching it without humming, whistling or singing these tunes afterward. To my eyes and ears, each viewing just gets better.

Given the surviving materials we have, the score and effects track unfortunately is likely the best we have. An expanded reissue of Scrooge is also welcome.

 
 Posted:   Apr 10, 2017 - 6:51 PM   
 By:   CH-CD   (Member)


Here,in the UK, the original Soundtrack LP of “Oliver!” was released on the RCA label.

Are they not the reason why an expanded score cannot be issued?

(See also “South Pacific” and Mario Lanza’s “The Student Prince”.)




 
 
 Posted:   Apr 10, 2017 - 9:53 PM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

Both Colgems and RCA are now part of Sony. Sony has been dealt with successfully in the past, but if there aren't any existing music tracks, nothing more can be released.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 11, 2017 - 2:01 PM   
 By:   manderley   (Member)

Years ago, and by that I mean, literally, 5 or 6 decades ago, Johnny Green used to turn up on the occasional radio talk show around the LA area. It was, I think, after he'd left MGM and RAINTREE COUNTY and was now working independently on the big roadshow pictures he was then associated with, like PEPE (!!!), WEST SIDE STORY, and OLIVER.

He would occasionally make reference to the sound studio in his home where he did projects related to his work and apparently had top-flight equipment in the mag tape environment.

I wonder if Green's music library and archives might have ended up somewhere that they might be accessed, and if any of the missing elements might be found there, even if of 2nd generation tapes.....

Secondly---and this is weird---I once read some comments by Green about the OLIVER music masters. This was so many years ago I can't remember the circumstances of his comments, but it appeared that someone was working with him to put together a re-master of the OLIVER soundtrack.

They looked and looked and finally found an original (I believe) 35mm fullcoat mag film element. I don't know if this was original to the film, or a submaster made for the original album, but Green commented, in a shocked tone, that the mag film, which would normally have 3 or 4 running tracks/channels (for stereo) had been "edited" by physically punching out holes (with an office paper punch???) and/or slicing out thin strips (with a matte knife???) within the magnetic-coated film stock where no audio information was intended to be picked up by the sound heads for a transfer!!!

In those days I was familiar with working with mag film, and Green certainly was too, and I've never heard of such a thing. Green said that looking at some sections of the mag master was a little like looking at a computer-punched paper tape or punched-card made by key-punch operators. This process, Green indicated, was not everywhere in the tape length, but only in sections (and selected sound channels on the tape) where changes were made. So it wasn't everywhere, but in those sections where it was, it looked a little like a collander or sieve!!

I guess I've remembered this over the years because it seemed so out in left field as to the extreme way you might solve a mag editing and re-mixing issue---and it stuck with me.

But I suppose if you had to make changes or edits, and you didn't want to go through a full mag re-mix, this might have been an idea based on then-viable computer technology to fix the problem cheaply and fast. But can you imagine how a master, which shrinks and stretches over time, and really needs to stay intact to be salvageable decades later, would have survived this?

If Green was describing this accurately, I'd say that the chances for an OLIVER cd re-boot are slim to nil.

 
 Posted:   Apr 11, 2017 - 2:41 PM   
 By:   Grecchus   (Member)

But I suppose if you had to make changes or edits, and you didn't want to go through a full mag re-mix, this might have been an idea based on then-viable computer technology to fix the problem cheaply and fast. But can you imagine how a master, which shrinks and stretches over time, and really needs to stay intact to be salvageable decades later, would have survived this?

That must be the then new DigiLog format that didn't quite catch on?

Those stupid, stupid, stupid b.......s!

Edit: It was probably underscore they were taking out in their origami strip/excise edits. A true paradox. To retain as much structural integrity as possible, the mag tape, if found, would require an expensive buttressing method to ensure it could be read without shearing it unevenly or over-stressing the weakened sections. If you are prepared to do that to the tape in the first place, then the intention was probably to trash it anyway post post-production. The mind boggles!

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 11, 2017 - 11:13 PM   
 By:   Don Norman   (Member)

It certainly is a shame and a historical loss that the masters for the OLIVER! soundtrack are gone. John Green did brilliant work on this movie and it was perhaps his best work. The "Overture" in particular is wonderful. IMO it is the best main title of any movie musical I've seen. I recall reading or hearing that Columbia execs did not like the main title music and wanted it changed to focus on the song "As Long As He Needs Me", but someone intervened (Mike Frankovich?) to keep it the way Green wanted it. Has anyone heard the same story? I also recall that Gene Kelly thought that OLIVER! was the best movie musical ever (or words to that effect).

 
 Posted:   Apr 12, 2017 - 9:34 AM   
 By:   CH-CD   (Member)

It certainly is a shame and a historical loss that the masters for the OLIVER! soundtrack are gone. John Green did brilliant work on this movie and it was perhaps his best work. The "Overture" in particular is wonderful. IMO it is the best main title of any movie musical I've seen. I recall reading or hearing that Columbia execs did not like the main title music and wanted it changed to focus on the song "As Long As He Needs Me", but someone intervened (Mike Frankovich?) to keep it the way Green wanted it. Has anyone heard the same story? I also recall that Gene Kelly thought that OLIVER! was the best movie musical ever (or words to that effect).

I agree. John Green did a really beautiful job with this score.

I particularly love the way that he starts “As Long as He Needs Me” so quietly and builds to that stunning climax. Just beautiful!..... and WHY didn’t we hear more from Shani Wallis???

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 12, 2017 - 9:37 AM   
 By:   joec   (Member)

Here,in the UK, the original Soundtrack LP of “Oliver!” was released on the RCA label.

Are they not the reason why an expanded score cannot be issued?

(See also “South Pacific” and Mario Lanza’s “The Student Prince”.)




The UK LP looked to be quite lavish compared to the US.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 12, 2017 - 9:38 AM   
 By:   joec   (Member)

Here,in the UK, the original Soundtrack LP of “Oliver!” was released on the RCA label.

Are they not the reason why an expanded score cannot be issued?

(See also “South Pacific” and Mario Lanza’s “The Student Prince”.)




The UK LP looked to be quite lavish compared to the US.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 12, 2017 - 9:38 AM   
 By:   joec   (Member)

Here,in the UK, the original Soundtrack LP of “Oliver!” was released on the RCA label.

Are they not the reason why an expanded score cannot be issued?

(See also “South Pacific” and Mario Lanza’s “The Student Prince”.)




The UK LP looked to be quite lavish compared to the US.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 12, 2017 - 9:38 AM   
 By:   joec   (Member)

Here,in the UK, the original Soundtrack LP of “Oliver!” was released on the RCA label.

Are they not the reason why an expanded score cannot be issued?

(See also “South Pacific” and Mario Lanza’s “The Student Prince”.)




The UK LP looked to be quite lavish compared to the US.

 
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