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Comments about the soundtrack for Star Wars: A New Hope (John Williams)

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Re: 2004 Sony Classical set
• Posted by: Rolan   <Send E-Mail>
• Date: Monday, September 4, 2006, at 1:42 p.m.
• IP Address:
• In Response to: Re: 2004 Sony Classical set (Bren)

> Rolan,

> Mainly because of the comprehensive liner notes notes that accompany the
> 1997 RCA set. No one will disagree that the primary point of buying the
> CDs is to listen to the music. The more familiar the listener is with the
> trilogy itself, the more apparent the job the score does of driving the
> narative whilst listening to it. The packaging and liner notes will not
> aid your enjoyment and response as a listener to the music itself, anymore
> than an explanation of joke will help you laugh.

> Where the liner notes and packaging of the 1997 RCA version do come into
> their own is aiding your *understanding* of the score, how it came to be
> composed and recorded, the musical techniques used in it etc.

> Ie, the notes for ANH contain the following:

> A brief history of JWs film scoring career, a description of the leitmotif
> style/technique and the circumstances surrounding the original recording
> of the score and impact on film scores post ANH.

> A brief section on the extensions and alterations to the score for the
> 1997 SE rerelease of the films.

> What then follows is a track by track "companion" to the score.
> The author comments on musical aspects (leitmotif, key, pace) and how
> these map onto/underscore what it seen on screen, how the various
> character themes re-enforce the mythic archetypes that Lucas based the
> characters themselves on (ie the eager youth, the advisory wizard etc) and
> so on.

> Also included is a list of recording dates, the number of takes and the
> take used in the final version in the film.

> Is all of this neccessary to enjoy the music? No, not in the slightest.
> However if you are at all interested in understanding the music, which may
> or may not help you to enjoy it more, the 1997 RCA versions are the way to
> go.

> Oh, and the slipcased, hardback book versions of the 1997 RCA issues are
> incredibly collectable!

> Short answer:

> Just want the music, not interested in the notes, photos etc? 2004 Sony
> version are for you. Easily obtained, as you mention.

> Want the notes, photos, classier packaging (in my humble opinion) as well
> as the music? 1997 RCA. Can still be tracked down on eBay etc, but will
> take some effort & money.

> Consider it to be the difference between a first edition/special edition
> hardback of a favourite book and the common paperback. Same story and
> text, just a little extra that makes you feel like you have something
> special in the hardback.

> Either way, enjoy the score - whichever set you buy to listen to it.

> Bren

I'll agree with you there. Liner notes could have been very useful. But actually I would prefer if they released a DVD of the actual recording sessions so one can see how the music was recorded. Maybe even interviews with the LSO performers and such. That would have been awesome. Oh well, can't have it all.

Comments in this Thread:     Expand >>
  • 2004 Sony Classical set  (4152 views)
       Rolan - Friday, June 30, 2006, at 6:47 p.m.
    •    Re: 2004 Sony Classical set  (3847 views)
         Bren - Thursday, July 13, 2006, at 3:44 a.m.
      •      Re: 2004 Sony Classical set  (3948 views)    We're Here
           Rolan - Monday, September 4, 2006, at 1:42 p.m.

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