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Heritage_Head

John Williams vs the world

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57 minutes ago, tromprof said:

John Williams clearly has studied musical composition and orchestration. He can be accused of "borrowing" frequently from other great composers, esp. in sound tracks, but is also an excellent composer in his own right. John Williams writing is so excellent it tends to stands along side a film instead of hiding in the background. Few modern movie composers have his level of knowledge and craftsmanship. The film with live orchestra concert is very popular right now. I have played Star Wars and Jurassic Park film concerts this past year, a Danny Elfman concert (video and music from several different films), and Pirates of the Caribbean a couple of years ago. The level of musical sophistication between the Williams scores and the others is vast.

The decision to have that level of musical involvement, as well as where it is placed is also decided by the films director.

Zimmer's stuff is not bad, just not the same level of writing. Danny Elfman has written some good stuff too, and a lot of fun to play.

John Williams is over 80 at this point, I am not so sure he will be producing many more new works.

Excellent post sir.

Sounds like you have literally tons of hands on experience. As a 30 year musician myself (novice probably compared to you). I totally understand how the view point become for better or worse much more.... involved as a word than the audience has for the most part. Its really hard to just listen and not be thinking of things that someone with no knowledge of the creation and the hands on playing of the music does. I could probably write a book on this subject and still be just getting started into all the differences on this topic.  

 

I don't play orchestra music (played trumpet as a kid). So I'm just a fan like anyone else. But the music I do play its a totally different experience when listening. Every note, tempo change, pause, and on and on. You can hear/see it in 3d (probably a terrible example). I guess I don't need to try and describe it to you. But just so others here can relate a bit. 

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BTW My point was not to argue that John Williams music is better. Better is a matter of taste. Artistically speaking, it is superior IMO, but better?

Another composer whose soundtracks tend to dominate the film is Philip Glass. 

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14 minutes ago, tromprof said:

BTW My point was not to argue that John Williams music is better. Better is a matter of taste. Artistically speaking, it is superior IMO, but better?

Another composer whose soundtracks tend to dominate the film is Philip Glass

Glass has never really been on my radar (I knew of him). Im excited to listen to some of his stuff. His song "Openings" has 49mill hits on spotify! Even John Williams most listened to is only 32mill. Impressive. Of course Pink Floyd has songs with over 250 million. The Wall is the biggest selling album ever behind. Michal Jackson thriller (albums sold world wide)

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Thriller is #1 with 110 million, PF is #3 at 43 million, but it depends on whose stats you read...

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2 hours ago, Marvel said:

Thriller is #1 with 110 million, PF is #3 at 43 million, but it depends on whose stats you read...

👍

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Zimmer is composing the new DUNE score as well......Which I was very, very happy to read...!!!

 

But I grew up with John Williams basically writing the score to my childhood...E.T., Close Encounters.... I will often go for a night drive in the mountains(BlueRidgePKWY),  go to some choice lookouts(scenic view ahead). I'll park, turn the lights off and just keep the car doors open, walk around, stare at the stars and play CloseEncounters tracks...👽🛸👍.. 

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I probably should have titled this John Williams vs the world (would have been a fairer fight). He's like almost 90 and his latest star wars work is still top notch. Granted he still uses a lot of whats from older star wars. But a lot of the new stuff is great. He's one of a kind.

 

The part when Leia is floating in space and the slow piano sounds like its stuck in quick sand. Crying as it painfully strains to play one more note. Yes its Leias theme from 40 years ago but its never been so powerful.

 

He also doesn't just package music and send it to them to use how they want. He sits in front of the movie playing and writes out exactly how its going to go. To the parts of the movie that are done. Way more involved than the norm. 

 

G.O.A.T

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2 hours ago, Heritage_Head said:

I probably should have titled this John Williams vs the world (would have been a fairer fight). He's like almost 90 and his latest star wars work is still top notch. Granted he still uses a lot of whats from older star wars. But a lot of the new stuff is great. He's one of a kind.

 

The part when Leia is floating in space and the slow piano sounds like its stuck in quick sand. Crying as it painfully strains to play one more note. Yes its Leias theme from 40 years ago but its never been so powerful.

 

He also doesn't just package music and send it to them to use how they want. He sits in front of the movie playing and writes out exactly how its going to go. To the parts of the movie that are done. Way more involved than the norm. 

 

G.O.A.T

I'm pretty sure that's how they all do it.

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4 hours ago, oldtimer said:

I'm pretty sure that's how they all do it.

Not really from my research (not experience). What John does in his writing special. 

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1 hour ago, Heritage_Head said:

Not really from my research (not experience). What John does in his writing special. 

Maybe not today, but old school that is simply how it was always done.  Re: Quincy Jones, Schiffrin, et al.

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45 minutes ago, oldtimer said:

Maybe not today, but old school that is simply how it was always done.  Re: Quincy Jones, Schiffrin, et al.

Im no expert so I just go by what others that worked with him say (like Lucas and Spielberg). They certainly could have been overstating some of the facts for there close friend. Based on how they talk about how he does things compared to most others. Most others the music gets worked in based on how the studio and everyone working on that part decide to use it. It gets cut up and moved all over the place based on how they want it used. Of course that still happens a little with John. But for the most part John is that guy. Probably why his music plays such a large role. Like another lead character in the movie. Overshadows things even. 

 

His scores are normally as big a part of the movies as anything else going on. I would argue that in his best work he's the biggest part (Even bigger than the force, Luke, or Vader himself). 

 

Im a bias fanboy (cant help it). So are Lucas and Spielberg. So I'm sure a term like fluff piece would have some truth. 

 

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1 minute ago, oldtimer said:

Don't get me started on Spielberg.

 

=== ah, come on. I love it when you get started —

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Sorry, I am calming myself for tomorrow's Holy Day.

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3 hours ago, oldtimer said:

Don't get me started on Spielberg.

He's made some good movies way back. But I'm not a big fan myself. He really hasn't done much in a long long time as a director for my taste. I like intense hero villain type movies with great scores. He just hasn't done that really well in a long time imo. 

 

Im a bigger fan of him as a producer now. 

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12 hours ago, oldtimer said:

Sorry, I am calming myself for tomorrow's Holy Day.

On your way to Stonehenge?

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3 hours ago, oldtimer said:

Nah, too many crazies there.

Stoners?

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