Movies about sport have often inspired composers to create great musical moments. The majority of these have not only enhanced the films they were written for but in have sometimes had a life of their own away from any images on screen. In most cases the scores within this category, whether based on fictional or true events, are upbeat, anthem-like and full of energy and vitality. But many have yielded a wealth of more intimate and emotional thematic material. One only has to listen to past triumphs where the subject matter of sport in a film has been given a crescendo-filled score, as in Goldsmith’s high octane but at the same time poignant and hopeful sounding HOOSIERS (aka BEST SHOT) and Randy Newman’s highly acclaimed, stunning soundtrack for THE NATURAL and Bill Conti’s uplifting and infectious music for the ROCKY films, which have become film music classics. Other examples include Bernstein’s THE BABE, Goldsmith’s emotive and Gaelic flavoured RUDY and Vangelis’ CHARIOTS OF FIRE which, although fully electronic, possessed heart, soul, emotion and melody.
THE MIGHTY MACS is no exception to any of the above. Composer William Ross has produced a soundtrack brimming with emotive, proud themes and passages which immediately grab the listener’s attention; the composer utilizing a symphonic approach with a sound and style akin to THE NATURAL and HOOSIERS. This is a wonderfully lyrical and expressive soundtrack; a score overflowing with rich and robust themes which pull at the heartstrings in one moment and in the next instant set the adrenaline racing. It is filled with grit, passion, hope and something which I can only describe as being the musical equivalent to stubborn determination and a resolve to win. THE MIGHTY MACS is based on actual events which began in 1971. It tells the story of Cathy Rush who takes the job of head basket ball coach at an all-girls Catholic college in Philadelphia. It’s a story of fortitude, desperation and high emotions. As coach, Cathy faces many challenges, the main one being to attempt to compete against established and perpetual winners in the sport and receive the blessing from the establishment. The score mirrors and enhances the moods of the film wonderfully – at times being understated but on other occasions driving the action forward – supporting but never overpowering the film. William Ross is a masterful and talented composer, conductor and arranger who works prolifically within in film and other mediums but seems to have been overlooked and underrated by many. This CD may help rectify this because he is composer of great worth, originality and aptitude and deserves wider recognition.