Press Release from Quartet:
Celebrating the centenary of Maestro Elmer Bernstein, Quartet Records and MGM are proud to present a mammoth, deluxe 4-CD collection with the original iconic MAGNIFICENT SEVEN saga that comprises four films produced between 1960 and 1972, all of them scored by the great Elmer Bernstein.
Bernstein’s music is a genre-defining masterpiece. Inspired, in part, by the work of Aaron Copland, the composer created a distinctive blend of Americana and what he called Tex-Mex elements without resorting—as so many of his predecessors did—to quoting actual folksongs. The score is replete with memorable themes and rife with tension when such is called for. Following the development of Bernstein’s music through all four films makes for a fascinating journey!
The score of THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN was not officially released until 1998 by Ryko. For this new release, on Disc 1, we accessed three 1/4″ full-track monaural rolls of “print” takes vaulted by MGM to expand upon the earlier edition. Several bonus tracks are included at the end of Disc 4 due to insufficient room on the first disc.
For RETURN OF THE SEVEN, only the celebrated re-recording done by Bernstein in London has survived; the scoring masters and music stems remain lost. For Disc 2 of this set, we newly transferred the 1/4″ stereo album master and have maintained the spacing the composer placed between each track. We have also included the CD premiere of the rare album recorded by the composer for a promotional Philip Morris & Co. campaign on United Artists Records: THE MUSIC FROM MARLBORO COUNTRY, sourced from the 1/4″ stereo album master.
GUNS OF THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN is perhaps the most varied and musically satisfying of the sequels. We have used on Disc 3 the same extended stereo program produced by Lukas Kendall for the Film Score Monthly label and included in a long-out-of-print western box set.
For the final entry in the series, THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN RIDE!, Bernstein’s orchestrators, Leo Shuken and Jack Hayes, adapted the composer’s thematic material to fit sequences in the movie. A single day was spent recording at the Universal Scoring Stage in Los Angeles with Bernstein conducting. While scoring masters remain elusive, we have accessed the monaural music stem to include the 45 minutes of music heard in the film on Disc 4.
Meticulously produced, restored and mastered by Chris Malone, the package designed by Nacho B. Govantes comes with cover art created by Jim Titus and a 36-page booklet with an in-depth essay by authoritative music writer Frank K. DeWald.
Elmer Bernstein never wavered from his commitment to write music that enhanced every film he scored with beauty, excitement, passion and dignity. Quartet Records is proud to celebrate his centenary with this 4-CD compendium of all the surviving music Bernstein recorded for the four original MAGNIFICENT SEVEN films. Enjoy the ride!