Some films begin with such memorable songs, that once they get into your mind, you can’t get them out of there. Well, if only those math formulas would get in there so easily as well…
From James Bond to Pink Panther, I could go on enumerating several themes that get you instantaneously in the mood. But topping the list is the main theme of “Star Wars”. Even if you have been living “in a galaxy far, far away”, you couldn’t have missed its notes. Every single movie in the series begins with it.
Sometimes it’s referred to as “Luke’s Theme”, in a probably desperate attempt to give it a proper name. And that because in the original orchestral score, it bears the most ordinary name possible: “Overture”.
If you are a musician, you can get really frustrated for not being able to compose a similar piece of music. Instead, you can play around with it, transform it, give it a personal touch.
What can we get from that? Let’s listen to some different versions!
The original theme
In order to have the original as a starting point, we put it first. Plus you might not know the full version.
The soundtracks of the first seven movies in the series were composed by the brilliant John Williams. And I’m not exaggerating when I call him “brilliant”. This guy has 49 Oscar nominations! (Only Walt Disney outruns him, with 59 nominations.) John Williams won 5 Oscars for the soundtrack of “Fiddler on the Roof”, “Jaws”, “Star Wars”, “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial” and “Schindler’s List”. Not to mention other titles as well. Practically, his career and the history of cinematography itself entangle one another.
In 2005, The American Film Institute chose the score composed by John Williams for “Star Wars” as the best film score of all times!
Here is John Williams, in some rare footage, conducting the Boston Pops orchestra to interpret the main theme of “Star Wars”:
Star Wars Theme/Cantina Band – Meco
As a film score, it is outstanding, that’s for sure. But can you imagine this song making its way to the top of the music charts?!
“Star Wars” – the first episode – had its premiere on 25 May 1977. And it was a fabulous success.
Noticing that the film score was so popular with the public, Meco – a clever musician – thought about remixing it in the… disco style. And they didn’t settle for less, but made a complete album: “Star Wars and Other Galactic Funk” 1)”Star Wars and Other Galactic Funk” in Wikipedia.
“Star Wars Theme/Cantina Band” was their single. On 1 October 1977, it became number one in the Billboard Hot 100. It stayed there for two weeks. It remains the best sold instrumental single in the history of music 2)”Star Wars Theme/Cantina Band” in Wikipedia.
The video is beyond description:
A thorough analysis of the humor in the Star Wars series and other related materials, with lots of funny photos and videos.
A history of all the songs from the opening credits of the Agent 007 movies, with many surprising details.
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