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Comments about the soundtrack for Braveheart (James Horner)

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Re: Dont be an idiot
• Posted by: roybatty   <Send E-Mail>
• Date: Tuesday, February 27, 2007, at 8:35 p.m.
• IP Address:
• In Response to: Re: Dont be an idiot (Niece)

> You are out of your mind. One thing is direct quotation or adaptation of
> folk music, something that milions of composers did with very specific
> reasons in mind, from Brahms to Ives. Other thing is plagiarism. When
> Bartok used a folk melody he didnt say it was his melody. He said it was
> his arrangement of a pre-existing melody. Horner never said something like
> that. He simply stole one piece of music that already existed and tried to
> pass it as his own, one thing that he is constantly doing. Please cut the
> crap.

They didn't always credit the source and there were not always specific purposes. In my opinion, a good example of plagiarism is the clarinet theme from Horner's "An American Tail", which, despite some differences, is obviously taken from the first measures of Borodin's "Steppes of Central Asia". Other examples would be the Braveheart/Jupiter case and Willow/Schumann's Third. By the same rationale, however, I have to admit that, for example, the melody of Holst's "In The Bleak Midwinter" is virtually the same melody as that of the second movement "Largo" of Dvorak's Ninth. As far as I know, Holst never gave reasons for this even though the similarity is unmistakable. Another example (off the top of my mind)is that the theme from Tchaikovsky's Sleeping Beauty is very similar to the "Morning" section/Morning Mood from Grieg's Peer Gynt. Again, there is no specific reason for this other than that it is a catchy hook and sounds good. But you will never hear people calling Holst or Tchaikovsky plagiarists even though the level of similarity in both aforementioned cases is the same as with Horner, i.e. not exactly identical, but ripping-off the hook of the tune and stealing the structure. My point is this: if they (and others) can get away with this then why can't Horner be excused his borrowings, seeing as he doesn't steal as much nor as often as people like to make seem.

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