GDI Records: Uncovering Hidden Horrors

Dracula A.D. 1972
Dracula A.D. 1972

In November 1998 a new label, GDI, hit the soundtrack market place causing quite a stir within the ranks of soundtrack collectors. For many years the music from the Hammer gothic horrors such as DRACULA, FRANKENSTEIN, THE BRIDES OF DRACULA, THE REPTILE and all those MUMMY movies had been much requested by collectors of film music to get a commercial release. Up until the arrival of GDI they had to make do with the re-recordings that had been commissioned by British label Silva Screen. GDI’s first release was a compilation of themes from no less than 25 Hammer classics, ranging from well known tracks as in James Bernard’s DRACULA through to oddities such as Don Ellis’s MOON ZERO TWO. The compilation was the idea of Gary Wilson, who is I suppose, the head of GDI music in the UK. I caught up with Gary via a mutual friend Michael Jones and after our first conversation we both realised we had a lot in common Continue reading GDI Records: Uncovering Hidden Horrors

Advertisements

Africa

Africa
Africa

Music for documentaries has over the past ten to twelve years come into its own, this is mainly due to composers such as George Fenton who scored some of these fascinating and highly informative pieces of imagery with a fully symphonic approach. I highlight George Fenton simply because of his work with David Attenborough, but there are so many other composers who have crafted beautiful and haunting soundtracks for documentaries which have wildlife as their subject matter, Christopher Gunning‘s WILD AFRICA for example. Recently the BBC screened a mammoth series entitled AFRICA which was created by Sir David Attenborough. I not only enjoyed the series immensely but fell in love with the music that had been composed for it by Sarah Class. To be honest the score for the series is as diverse and as epic as the film and the continent of Africa itself, Continue reading Africa

Roy Budd

Roy Budd
Roy Budd

Roy Budd was probably the most promising and talented composer and musician to come out of the UK since John Barry. Budd’s film scores were always greeted with much applause by collectors and his ability as a pianist was second to none, in fact it was astounding. Roy and I first met in 1992. This was after a long string of phone calls to PRS and then his agent. Then one Sunday afternoon the phone at home rang. I answered it and said “Hello”. A voice on the other end said “Is that John?”. I of course answered “Yes”. “Oh good – its Roy Budd”. Well that certainly surprised me. We chatted and Roy cracked a load of gags and arranged to meet up. He had told me he was going to start work on a massive work for the cinema but it was all hush hush. Of course I did not press him to reveal what this was but after about 5 minutes into our first meeting he told me all about the project which was for the silent movie THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA. I could tell he was really excited about the prospect of working on the film; it was not until July 21st 1993 we met again

 

Continue reading Roy Budd

Ron Goodwin

Ron Goodwin
Ron Goodwin

Ron Goodwin was, and still is one of England’s most well known composers of film music. He was also a respected conductor of music that can be categorised as easy listening or light music. During the late 1960s and throughout the 1970s, his compilation albums on the EMI studio 2 recording label were popular and sought after. Within the content of these albums the composer included film music compositions alongside instrumental favourites. The son of a policeman, Goodwin was born in Plymouth in 1930. In 1939, the composer’s father was transferred back to London, the family originally going to Kensal Rise then moving back to London before settling in Ruislip. Prior to the outbreak of war, Goodwin attended the Willesden County School. The school band had an orchestra and Goodwin was keen to join. The teacher in charge of music at the school told Goodwin that he could not do this until he had become proficient in playing the trumpet, this being the instrument that the young Goodwin had decided to take up. “My first performance in public was as third trumpet which started off with the grand march from TANHAUSER. Continue reading Ron Goodwin

Alessandro Alessandroni

Alessandro Alessandroni
Alessandro Alessandroni

For any collector of Italian soundtracks the name of Alessandro Alessandroni is probably a familiar one. He is undoubtedly the one artiste, composer/musician that is involved in almost 99% of all Italian soundtracks, his choir IL CANTORI MODERNI, has vocalised on scores for the Italian cinema that have been penned by the likes of Ennio Morricone, Bruno Nicolai, Carlo Rustichelli, Nico Fidenco, Francesco De Masi, Franco Micalizzi, Stelvio Cipriani, Piero Umiliani and Gianni Ferrio. To name a few, he is also responsible for a handful of scores for Italian productions and has been a featured soloist on many soundtracks. His whistle is distinctive and flawless, and his performances on electric guitar are second too none. It is Ennio Morricone that is the composer Alessandroni worked with most extensively during the mid to late 1960s and throughout the 1970s and 1980s. Alessandroni has recently scored a new Italian produced comedy western entitled TRINITY GOES EAST the score is everything that one would expect from the maestro, Continue reading Alessandro Alessandroni

FILM AND TELEVISION MUSIC FROM AROUND THE WORLD AND MOVIE REVIEWS AND NEWS.