When reviewing the century-long tradition of music in cinema, the American Film Institute's selection for 'greatest film score of all time' came as little surprise; it was of course John Williams' score to George Lucas' STAR WARS. For us, this 1977 score is something of a modern miracle - a work whose colossal popularity is matched only by its outstanding quality. Nowhere is that combination more apparent than in the very first piece of underscore, the unforgettable Main Title. Arguably the crown jewel of film music cues (whose original recording broke into the '77 Billboard top 10 [yes, the pop charts!]), this dazzling opening number presents a definitive rendition of the main theme and unequivocally proclaims the tone of the film that follows.
We recently had the great fortune to speak with audio legend Alan Snelling, assistant engineer on STAR WARS (as well as THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK, RETURN OF THE JEDI, SUPERMAN, RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK and many others). Here he provides a vivid account of the debut performance of the Main Title and its impact on those to first experience it. [We will continue to hear from Alan throughout our arc of episodes. His full unedited interview will be available later this week on Patreon
We simply can't contain our joy for today's episode - an hourlong exploration into the composition, orchestration, performance and storytelling power of the Main Title. Please join us as we take our "first steps into a larger world".
STAR WARS - John Williams - 1977 - Lucasfilm Ltd./20th Century Fox (George Lucas, dir,)
Star Wars: Suite for Orchestra - John Williams Signature Edition - Hal Leonard (conductor score)