Wednesday, 4 May 2016

May the Scores be with you

Happy Star Wars day - here’s a tune which made Williams...

Much is made of the fact that the Star Wars orchestral film score was a massive hit, despite rubbing shoulders with Donna Summer and the Village People beneath a Death Star glitter ball at the height of disco.
Embryonic Star Wars geeks allowed to stay up late to watch the 1978 Oscars, as I was, were rewarded with this glorious affirmation - when ‘John met John’.

But perhaps it’s sometimes forgotten that record producer and musician Meco (Domenico) Monardo also took a disco-fied version of the Star Wars theme to the very top of the US Billboard charts for two weeks in 1977.

It spent a lot of time on the New Zealand charts, which made friends and I very happy, because that meant it featured on weekly music chart programme Ready to Roll.

We could just about wrap our heads around the idea that this wasn’t the genuine Star Wars theme, but a pop-orchestral knock-off which, despite sounding a little like ‘Born Free’, went down a storm at lunchtime discos.

But what was even weirder was the fact that Ready to Roll often presented us with a completely different version again. It appeared to be a quartet of middle-aged brass musicians possibly bringing a hint of jazz to the proceedings. But what made this unbearably awesome for us all was the generous intercutting with that ubiquitous pre-release teaser (the film was still a good six months from these shores) - footage of the Millennium Falcon’s escape from the Death Star.

As dearly as I’d love to track down this ‘music video’ I haven’t met with any success.

But I did find the following clip, which gives some idea of Ready to Roll’s own Oomph dancers, when they choreographed something similar back in 1977. No, don’t thank me, really...

1 comment:

  1. For more about this piece, check out Todd in the Shadow's One Hit Wonder discussion on it.