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BSX Records: AVALANCHE - William Kraft und HARDLY WORKING von Morton Stevens

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Gestern gab es 2 neue Veröffentlichungen von BSX Records:

BUYSOUNDTRAX Records will be releasing AVALANCHE, featuring music composed and conducted by William Kraft (FIRE AND ICE, THE CHISHOLMS) for the 1978 disaster film written and directed by Corey Allen, produced by Roger Corman, starring Rock Hudson, Mia Farrow, Robert Forster, Rick Moses, Barry Primus and Cathy Paine.

AVALANCHE tells the story of a group of vacationers at an exciting new ski resort in the mountains of Colorado who are forced to face the brunt of Mother Nature’s wrath in the form of a powerful avalanche of snow. The film follows the efforts of the survivors to pull together despite their differences and stay alive long enough for rescue services to arrive.

Released towards the end of a successful cycle of disaster films that included THE POSEIDON ADVENTURE and THE TOWERING INFERNO, producer Roger Corman was looking for a composer who could provide a large scale orchestral score for his film and he turned to composer William Kraft who, at the time, was building a successful reputation for himself as a composer and conductor, as well as a master percussionist with the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra. For AVALANCHE, Kraft chose to center his score around the central conflicts of the film: Man’s destruction of his environment in his attempt to manipulate Nature instead of being one with it and the human relationships in the film. Performed by the National Philharmonic Orchestra of London, the composer deftly uses all the colors of the orchestra to highlight the dramatic elements of the story.

William Kraft (b. 1923, Chicago) has had a long and active career as composer, conductor, timpanist/percussionist and teacher. He is Professor Emeritus at the University of California, Santa Barbara, where he served for 11 years (1991 - 2002) as Chairman of the Composition Department and Corwin Professor of Music Composition. From 1981 -85, Mr. Kraft was the Los Angeles Philharmonic's Composer-in-Residence. During his residency, he was appointed by executive director Ernest Fleischmann to serve as the founding director of the orchestra's performing arm for contemporary music, the Philharmonic New Music Group. Mr. Kraft had previously been a member of the Los Angeles Philharmonic for 26 years; eight years as percussionist, and eighteen years as Principal Timpanist. For three seasons, he was also assistant conductor of the orchestra, and thereafter, frequent guest conductor.

Mr. Kraft has received numerous awards and commissions, including two Kennedy Center Friedheim Awards (first prize in 1990 for Veils and Variations for Horn and Orchestra, and second prize in 1984 for Concerto for Timpani and Orchestra; two Guggenheim Fellowships; two Ford Foundation commissions; fellowships from the Huntington Hartford Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts; the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters Music Award; the Norlin/MacDowell Fellowship; the Club 100 Distinguished Artist of Los Angeles Award, the ASCAP Award; the NACUSA Award; the Eva Judd O'Meara Award; first place in the Contemporary Record Society competition; commissions from the Library of Congress, U.S. Air Force Band, St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, Kronos Quartet, Voices of Change, the Schoenberg Institute, consortium of Speculum Mucicae/San Francisco Contemporary Music Players' Contemporary Music Forum, The Boston Pops Orchestra, consortium of Pacific Symphony/Spokane Symphony/Tucson Symphony, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, among others. His works have been performed by the New York Philharmonic, Boston Symphony, Chicago and Philadelphia Orchestras, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and other major American orchestras as well as in Europe, Japan, Korea, China, Australia and Israel. Recently completed recording projects are with the Czech Philharmonic, New England Conservatory and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic.

BUYSOUNDTRAX Records presents the original motion picture soundtrack to AVALANCHE on compact disc for the first time, featuring music composed and conducted by William Kraft, performed by the National Philharmonic Orchestra of London. AVALANCHE contains the original 1978 album program assembled by the composer and also includes a selection of outtakes as bonus tracks, from elements in the composer’s archive, professionally mastered by James Nelson of Digital Outland.

Avalance is a limited Edition of 1000 Units

BSXCD 8903

Original Motion Picture Soundtrack


Music by William Kraft,

Performed by the National Philharmonic Orchestra of London


1. Main Title (3:02)

2. To The Rescue (3:13)

3. Nick And Caroline (2:11)

4. Tina's Hysteria (0:35)

5. The Aftermath (2:07)

6. Bruce Skiing / First Avalanche (1:47)

7. Sleigh Ride (1:23)

8. Burning Ambulance / Rescue (0:52)

9. Snowmobile Race (1:46)

10. Kathy's Sequence (Skating) (2:37)

11. Bruce And Annette (Jazz) (2:55)

12. The Avalanche (2:51)

13. Mother Collapses / Henry Digs Out (2:50)

14. Death Of Mark (2:42)

15. Annette's Sequence ( Skating) (1:16)

16. End Credits (2:46)

Avalanche Outtake Suite (Mono)

17. Sleigh Ride (Short Version)

18. Nick And Caroline (Alternate version)

19. Snow Storm

20. Bruce Tries to Outrace the Avalanche / Avalanche (Alternate version)

21. Snowbound / To The Rescue (Alternate version)

22. Annette's Sequence (Short Version)

Total Time: 37:00

BUYSOUNDTRAX Records presents the original soundtrack to HARDLY WORKING. The soundtrack features music composed by Morton Stevens for the 1980 comedy film directed by directed by and starring the great Jerry Lewis, along with Susan Oliver, Deanna Lund, Roger C. Carmel, Harold J. Stone, Steve Franken, Buddy Lester and Billy Barty.

HARDLY WORKING tells the story of Bo Hooper, a circus clown who loses his job when the circus closes down and has the worst luck ever trying to hold down a job. Seen as a comeback film after an absence of nearly a decade, HARDLY WORKING gave Lewis the opportunity to debut his style of slapstick and sentimental comedy for a new generation of moviegoers.

Morton Stevens was hired by Jerry Lewis to score the film and while he provided slightly comic or light-hearted music to accompany some of the film’s comedic set pieces, he avoided writing specific comedy music and chose to focus the score’s arc on the dramatic elements of the story. Steven’s central theme for Bo, apart from its introduction early in the film, is thoroughly heartfelt and captures the essence of the character. Lewis was so pleased with the score that he even took to the podium during one of the scoring sessions and conducted the orchestra during a couple of cues.

Born In Newark, New Jersey in 1929, Morton Stevens studied composition at the Juilliard School and became the arranger and later, the musical director, for Sammy Davis, Jr., Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Liza Minnelli. He also served as music director for CBS and was a prolific composer and arranger for television for over 30 years. Best known for the famous theme music for HAWAII FIVE-0, for which he won two Emmys, Stevens contributed music to many television shows, including GUNSMOKE, POLICE WOMAN, THRILLER, WAGON TRAIN, THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E., CIMARRON STRIP, THE WILD WILD WEST, TINY TOON ADVENTURES. Stevens also served on the board of directors for the Academy Of Television Arts And Sciences. Surprisingly, he only scored a few feature films including ACT OF PIRACY, THEY STILL CALL ME BRUCE, CRACKING UP and THE RAIDERS. A great deal of the composer’s output has not been released on record or compact disc.

BUYSOUNDTRAX Records presents the world premiere soundtrack release of HARDLY WORKING, featuring music composed and conducted by Morton Stevens, including the complete orchestral score, along with the source music composed for the film as bonus tracks, professionally mastered by James Nelson of Digital Outland. The booklet contains liner notes written by noted author Randall D. Larson and includes comments from producer Igo Kantor.

HARDLY WORKING is a limited edition release of 1000 units

BSXCD 8904

Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

Hardly Working

Music by

Morton Stevens


Ships on February 17th

1. Main Title (1:39)

2. Uncle Bo (1:49)

3. Uncle Bo and the Little Girl (1:15)

4. The Gas Station Sequence (3:58)

5. Bartender Disco Music (1:19)

6. Japanese Cook Sequence (2:34)

7. Cigarette Bit (0:54)

8. J. Ballings (1:58)

9. Water Glass Bit / Post Office Exit (0:54)

10. MontyÕs Disco Time / Disco Time Dream Overlay (4:23)

11. First Day at the Post Office /

Sorting The Mail (1:06)

12. Delivering The Mail / Mailbox Problems /

Delivering The Mail / Bo and the ÒLadyÓ (6:28)

13. Dinner Source Music (3:02)

14. Beer Delivery (0:30)

15. Mail Sorting / Knocking The Lamp Over (2:47)

16. Evaluation Montage (1:39)

17. Interlude (1:35)

18. Parade of the Clown Mailman (2:55)

19. In To The Sunset / End Credits (3:30)


20. When The Saints Come Marching In (Badly) (0:33)

21. Crazy Clown Music (1:56)

22. Circus Organ Source (2:33)

Bonus Track

23. Parade of the Clown Mailman - Alternate (2:54)

Total Time: 53:09

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Wieso? Der Kraft-Score ist gar nicht schlecht! Ein sehr atonales Stück (Track 12), aber sonst was für Freunde "anspruchsvollerer" Scores. ;) Die alte LP spiele ich immer noch sehr gerne.

Mir sind beide Filme und Soundtracks völlig unbekannt, und ich nehme sehr an, dass das selbst für die meisten Filmmusik-Fans gilt. Deshalb "mutig", was ich sowohl anerkennend als auch etwas besorgt meine.

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Gast Stefan Jania

Ah so. Okay. :) Aber: der Kraft-Score ist zum Kennenlernen eines interessanten "unbekannten" Komponisten wirklich gut. Ich würde mich übrigens sehr über eine legale Veröffentlichung seines Scores zu Fire And Ice freuen. Den Stevens kenne ich nicht. Ich habe nur seinen Score zu einem anderen (furchtbaren) Jerry Lewis-Film der 1980'er, Slapstick Of Another Kind, bei dem er Michel Legrand für die US-Fassung ersetzt hat (die Varèse-LP bot damals je eine Seite Stevens, eine Seite Legrand). Hm, ich überlege noch....

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Gast Stefan Jania

Vorder- und Rückseite der alten Delos-LP aus dem FSM-Board geklaut (BSX hat vom Berg den Gipfel abgehackt. Sowas! :)). Ich wünschte ich könnte so gute Repros meiner LP-Cover herstellen...



Jetzt aber genug Werbung für den Score. Freunde von, sagen wir mal, Jerry Fielding sollten ein Ohr riskieren. ;)

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Gast Stefan Jania

Hilde, alter Schwerenöter...jetzt musst Du mir nur noch weismachen, dass es auch Anklänge an Williams' EIGER SANCTION hat und ich bin hin und weg... ;)

Also da wirst Du eher wenig Parallelen finden. ;)

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Hach ja... *seufz* "Fire and Ice" in feiner legaler CD-Fassung, das wär was..! Einer der ganz ganz tollen Fantasy-Scores und überhaupt! Hat mich schon anno dazumals im Kino umgeblasen! Wie froh war ich als ich vor ein paar Jahren, dem Internet sei Dank, plötzlich eine... ähhm... *hüstel* - also die Musik wiederhören durfte! :)

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Gast Stefan Jania

Kennst Fire And Ice nicht? Leicht brutaler und frauenfeindlicher (hm, waren das nicht viele der damaligen Fantasy-Streifen ;)) Zeichentrickfilm von Ralph Bakshi aus dem Jahre 1983. Guter Score, in einigen Teilen sehr Jaws geprägt. Der Score ist wirklich schon lange als legale Veröffentlichung überfällig und war der Grund, weswegen ich mir damals die Avalanche-LP überhaupt gekauft habe. ;)

Edit: sehe gerade, Fire And Ice gibt es komplett bei You Tube.

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