All posts under Charles Gerhardt

CD Review: Citizen Kane – The Classic Film Scores of Bernard Herrmann


The concluding batch of Sony reissues from Charles Gerhardt’s Classic Film Scores series has been released and the first CD is a gem. CITIZEN KANE – THE CLASSIC FILM SCORES OF BERNARD HERRMANN brings together selections from five of his most famous–and inventive–scores, without a single note of Hitchcock among them. The album opens with the rousing “The Death Hunt” from ON DANGEROUS GROUND (1952). The film stars Robert Ryan as a bitter, burned out cop who falls in love with the blind sister (Ida Lupino) of the killer he is…

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CD Review: Lost Horizon – The Classic Film Scores of Dimitri Tiomkin


The final reissued album in the Charles Gerhardt Classic Film Scores series (at least until March) is LOST HORIZON–THE CLASSIC FILM SCORES OF DIMITRI TIOMKIN. Though there were at least two albums in the series that followed–an album devoted to suites from CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE THIRD KIND and STAR WARS and the SPECTACULAR WORLD OF FILM SCORES compilation–the Tiomkin volume effectively closed the book on the Golden Age portion of Gerhardt’s work for RCA. And much as the Korngold volume THE SEA HAWK gave it a rousing start, Tiomkin’s…

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CD Review: Captain Blood – Classic Film Scores for Errol Flynn

Captain Blood

Out of the numerous albums in Charles Gerhardt’s Classic Film Scores series, CAPTAIN BLOOD–CLASSIC FILM SCORES FOR ERROL FLYNN, released in 1975, was the final album devoted to a particular star. While some of the scores on the album are familiar from other entires in the series, Gerhardt and the New Philharmonic Orchestra once again bring this great Golden Age film music stunningly to life. Three of Flynn’s most famous films were featured on Gerhardt’s first album in the series, THE SEA HAWK, devoted to the music of Erich Wolfgang Korngold….

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CD Review: Gone With the Wind – Max Steiner’s Classic Film Score

Gone With the Wind

In his Classic Film Scores series LPs devoted to Golden Age film music, Charles Gerhardt only produced one album devoted to a single score–Max Steiner‘s classic GONE WITH THE WIND, released in 1974. Of all the scores from the period, the choice of GWTW probably seems overly obvious today, but it was a smart business move. With its enduring popularity among the general public and film score fans, GWTW was destined to appeal to the widest group of listeners. And having the score heard in stereo for the first time was…

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CD Review: Casablanca – Classic Film Scores for Humphrey Bogart


In addition to albums devoted to certain composers, Charles Gerhardt compiled a series of albums devoted to various film stars as part of his Classic Film Scores. The second album (the first was devoted to films of Bette Davis), and the sixth in the series overall, was CASABLANCA–CLASSIC FILM SCORES FOR HUMPHREY BOGART, released in 1974. Since Bogart did most of his work on the Warner Bros. lot, much of the album is devoted to music by Max Steiner. The first half of the album belongs to Steiner and begins,…

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CD Review: Captain from Castile – The Classic Film Scores of Alfred Newman


If you’ve read this blog for any reasonable amount of time, you already know of my love for Alfred Newman. Newman’s music speaks to me in a way that no other composer–Golden Age or otherwise–does. And that love of Newman began with CAPTAIN FROM CASTILE–THE CLASSIC FILM SCORES OF ALFRED NEWMAN, the third album in Charles Gerhardt’s Classic Film Scores series, first released in 1973. The album has recently been reissued on Sony Masterworks and remains an essential primer on Newman’s music. The album covers an astonishing period of creativity beginning…

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CD Review: The Sea Hawk – The Classic Film Scores of Erich Wolfgang Korngold


The Classic Film Scores recordings of Charles Gerhardt from the 1970s were an essential part of my film music education, unearthing a whole new world of Golden Age film music for my still-developing love. Gerhardt recorded a total of 14 albums in the series, but the CDs were long out of print until a couple of years ago when ArkivMusic offered them through their CD-R program. Now Sony Masterworks has dug into the vaults and reissued six of these Golden Age gems for a new generation of film music fans to…

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Charles In Charge

Charles Gerhardt

Before there was Lukas, Bob, or Doug, before there was Silva Screen, Chandos, or Naxos, one man was responsible for excavating classic film scores from obscurity—Charles Gerhardt. With his series of Classic Film Scores recordings for RCA in the 1970s, Gerhardt (1927-1999) introduced a whole new generation to music from the Golden Age. As a 14-year-old band nerd growing up in Grand Prairie, Texas (’nuff said), my first two score purchases—THE OMEN and STAR WARS—won Oscars. As a result, I used the Academy Awards as a crash course in film…

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