At last! Terrific 1981 John Barry western soundtrack arrives on CD!
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At last! Terrific 1981 John Barry western soundtrack arrives on CD! Top-drawer production credits include the British ITC production company headed by Sir Lew Grade, director William A. Fraker, cinematographer Lazslo Kovacs, producer Walter Koblenz, screen writers Ivan Goff & Ben Roberts, Michael Kane and William Roberts (of The Magnificent Seven fame), with Christopher Lloyd, Jason Robards as co-stars and Klinton Spilsbury and Michael Horse leading as legendary western heroes The Lone Ranger and trusted Native American side-kick Tonto. Yes, great white horse Silver gets plenty of screen time as well. Their heroic exploits began in radio dramas of the 1930’s, then appeared in Republic serials in the late 30’s, moved on to early television in the 40’s, then landing in movies in the later 50’s. Their signature music was the William Tell Overture by Rossini, but its incredible popularity caused the enduring melody to be forever re-christened as “The Lone Ranger theme”. In this tale set in 1854 Texas, young John Reid sees the murder of his parents, finds adoption by a tribe of Native Americans, befriends boy Tonto, sees rescue by his brother and the Texas Rangers, becomes a lawyer but is left for dead during an ambush by the Cavendish outlaw gang. Vowing vengeance, Reid dons his famed mask, joins with Tonto, breaks in his famous white steed and fights for law and order. Composer John Barry tackles a rare western subject in his celebrated career, anchoring the score with “The Man In The Mask”, sung in the Main Title by country superstar Merle Haggard and featuring lyrics by Dean Pitchford (Academy Award-winning songs for Fame) and harmonica soloist Paul Jones (of Manfred Mann fame). MCA Records released an album in 1981 running just 27 minutes, but managed to create a dynamic record that included several rousing selections from John Barry’s score, the John Barry/Merle Haggard ballads and - of course - that legendary Rossini theme. After years of exhaustive searches for session masters proved unsuccessful, Intrada worked with ITV and current soundtrack license holder UMG to finally premiere the rare 1981 album in CD format, working from pristine copies of the album itself (even these masters remain AWOL) and utilizing state-of-the-art NoNoise technology that addressed all surface noise without sacrificing any vivid dynamics of the original score, which was recorded in France under Barry’s direction. Though the album is admittedly brief, it remains a sensational listening experience! Flipper-style booklet cover features original MCA album artwork plus alternate campaign with liner notes by John Barry authority, Jon Burlingame. CD produced by Douglass Fake, Roger Feigelson performs executive producer chores. Dan Wallin records and mixes, John Barry composes and conducts. Intrada Special Collection CD available while quantities and interest remain!