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James Bond Theme Orchestra

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#1 kaiserthegreat



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Posted 07 February 2014 - 06:03 PM

I recently picked up all the BEST OF BOND CDs from eBay that I didn't already have because they were cheap and apparently I'm a fan of repetition.  I noticed that the traditional James Bond Theme as heard originally on the Dr. No soundtrack and as track #1 on all these collections is always credited as "The John Barry Orchestra" except for the original BEST OF BOND (1992) double disc version, which has the traditional sounding theme on disc one credited as "The Monty Norman Orchestra" and an alternate (Columbia single version?) on the second disc credited to "The John Barry Orchestra."  So...was the original theme conducted by Barry using Monty Norman's orchestra and they have since incorrectly credited it to the Monty Norman Orchestra or was THE BEST OF BOND erroneously credited, or maybe it came out during some sort of litigation?  

#2 Grard Bond

Grard Bond


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Posted 09 February 2014 - 08:53 AM

I think on the 1992 double cd they just wanted to indicate that it are two different versions and didn't know another way to do it. Both orchestra's don't realy exit anyway.

In one of the books I read about Barry it says that when Barry recorded the scores they just hired/used the sessionplayers (or guys he knew from earlier work) who were available at the time, but it was most of the time called The London Philharmonic Orchestra,  or something like it, that just sounded better, but there was no real orchestra at all, just session players.

Edited by Grard Bond, 09 February 2014 - 11:46 AM.

#3 valentin_ice



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Posted 12 February 2014 - 09:45 PM

As I understand it, the orchestra names from the CD are not accurate or representative of the recording.


Jon Burlingame's excellent book on Bond music goes into greater detail, but if I recall correctly, the performance on disc 1, the more familiar sounding version was recorded first (by John Barry, Vic Flick, and other members of the John Barry Seven) for use in the film Dr. No. It was sprinkled throughout the movie and popped up in later Bond films (Thunderball, OHMSS etc.)


The second disc's recording was made a week later, using a slightly larger group of musicians (though retaining the core personnel)  and became the "single" version that was played on radio and released on LP.