All posts under Ernest Gold

9 Purple Cows of Film Music


In his excellent 2002 book, Purple Cow: Transform Your Business By Being Remarkable, Seth Godin tells the story of a trip he took to France with his family. He describes driving around the French countryside, “enchanted by the hundreds of storybook cows grazing on picturesque pastures…For dozens of kilometers, we all gazed out the windows, marveling about how beautiful everything was.” But after the first 20 minutes, he started ignoring the cows. “The new cows were just like the old cows, and what once was amazing was now common. Worse than…

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9 Favorite FSM CDs


With the release of Jerry Fielding’s THE WILD BUNCH last month, it’s the end of the line for the Film Score Monthly label. With a roster of 250 releases since 1996, FSM filled a very important void in the soundtrack business. With its primary concentration on the MGM library (which later incorporated other studios), producer Lukas Kendall had access to one of the richest veins of Silver and Golden Age film music. FSM had its share of heavy-hitters—the Newman’s, Goldsmith’s, Williams’s, Barry’s, Morricone’s, North’s, Waxman’s, Herrmann’s, Bernstein’s, and basically the…

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50 Favorite Film Scores, Part 2: #40–31

It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World

Yesterday, I began a week-long look at 50 of my favorite film scores. If you want to read about the background behind the project, check out the earlier post. The remaining scores will be covered throughout the rest of the week. Now, on with the next installment of 50 of my favorite film scores… 40. GONE WITH THE WIND (1939) [audio:gonewiththewind.mp3] Max Steiner’s classic score is made for the Technicolor sweep of the big screen. Anchored by arguably the most famous piece of film music ever written (if for no…

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9 Favorite Comedy Scores


Because everyone’s sense of humor is different, everyone’s taste in comedy films is also different. (Duh!) I’m not usually a big fan of obvious, slapstick humor. I prefer comedy that has a human element, some darkness to it, and wit and sophistication (he types oh so snobbishly). You likely won’t find me at the latest Kevin James or Adam Sandler yuck fest (with “yuck” being the key word in that phrase). The most successful comedy film scores for me have some heart and drama to them, as well as an…

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Viva Bombolini!


Ah, the joys of guilty pleasures. And the joys are many in Stanley Kramer’s THE SECRET OF SANTA VITTORIA. Based on Robert Crichton’s bestselling novel, the 1969 film stars Anthony Quinn as the bumbling wine maker Bombolini, who is elected mayor of his small Italian town as a joke and then must hide one million bottles of the town’s wine from the occupying Nazis. The film runs too long for such a slight comedy, but with Quinn’s charismatic performance at the center, it’s hard to resist. Ernest Gold‘s Oscar-nominated score spices up the…

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CD Review: It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World


There’s only one word to describe IT’S A MAD, MAD, MAD, MAD WORLD…”mad.” Thankfully for us film score fans, Ernest Gold‘s wonderful score ties together all the loose threads of this bombastic film. This loud comedy (and I do mean LOUD, as evidenced by its Oscar for Best Sound Editing) about a group of strangers who follow the last words of dying thief Jimmy Durante to find $350,000 under the watchful eye of the local police chief Spencer Tracy would probably be unfilmable today. The cast alone would make it prohibitive–Tracy, Durante, Milton…

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CD Review: Exodus


There are innumerable issues that can crop up with with re-recordings of old scores. Sure, we can expect the sound quality to significantly improve, but will it match the intensity and quality of the original performance? What about the tempos? The timbres? Will it sound too stuffy or too bright? So many things can go wrong. For every Charles Gerhardt masterpiece, there’s a Leroy Holmes hack job waiting in the wings. Those reservations are tripled when it’s one of your favorite scores. For me, all of those questions and more ran…

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A Land Flowing With Milk and Honey


This week heralds the long-awaited arrival of Tadlow’s complete recording of Ernest Gold‘s score for EXODUS (1960). The Oscar-winning score has been a favorite of mine since my early days of Oscar-related film score discoveries. The sound quality of the score in the film and on subsequent issues of the soundtrack, while vibrantly conducted, has suffered from poor sound quality. Tadlow’s recording will remedy that problem, I’m sure. Based on Leon Uris’s bestselling novel, EXODUS stars Paul Newman and Eva Marie Saint and recounts the events that led to the…

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