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 Posted:   Jan 16, 2014 - 2:52 PM   
 By:   solium   (Member)

For Warner soundtrack releases I'd look to La-La Land & Intrada. I can't see Warner bothering, the market is just too tiny, easier to license out titles.

Plus they get a boat load of money letting someone else do all the work. wink

 
 Posted:   Jan 16, 2014 - 11:35 PM   
 By:   Stefan Huber   (Member)

Of course, one has to wait what this will mean. Maybe this will be just a re-issue program of out of print titles previously available on Rhino and FSM. If it's the "real" thing, it's a dream becoming reality. Not too much has been happening from the MGM back catalog lately. There are still plenty of 1930s and 1940s scores that could be issued - let alone the MGM musicals which haven't been properly touched by any label since a decade or so. There are also a few 1960s LPs that never made their way to CD.

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 17, 2014 - 8:08 AM   
 By:   vinylscrubber   (Member)

I seem to recall that (way back when) someone among the soundtrack producers community mentioned that Warners had archived many of their optical and magnetic music tracks to mono mixdowns on 1/4 inch tape--SO . . . I wouldn't hold out much hope for "CD quality" sound, but I would be happy with good archival quality for a favorite score. And, no doubt, we would pay at least the standard $19.95 for these if not more. Once again, for a favorite score I wouldn't mind the premium charge if that's all we'd ever hope to get.

Needless to say, the whole project is dependent on what and how much is readily available for "on demand" production.

 
 Posted:   Jan 17, 2014 - 12:33 PM   
 By:   Stefan Huber   (Member)

I seem to recall that (way back when) someone among the soundtrack producers community mentioned that Warners had archived many of their optical and magnetic music tracks to mono mixdowns on 1/4 inch tape

I think ALL Warner optical tracks were trashed without any preservation. All that is left these days are playback disks (Max Steiner) and backup copies (Korngold) in private collections, no?

The MGM tracks are a different story. Many of these have been preserved on magnetic tape. Unfortunately, many of the tracks already had degraded back then and were already unusable frown

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 17, 2014 - 2:48 PM   
 By:   manderley   (Member)

.....The MGM tracks are a different story. Many of these have been preserved on magnetic tape. Unfortunately, many of the tracks already had degraded back then and were already unusable.....


I think you're putting too blunt a point on this Stefan.

We already have many MGM scores/musicals from the mid-1930s on, and have heard good reports about a near-complete MARIE ANTOINETTE available---among others. It is known that Lukas was planning a Stothart box set, and, of course, we have NORTHWEST PASSAGE (from 1940) sounding pretty terrific considering its age, and DRAGON SEED from 1944, in wonderful stereo.

Many years ago, in the late 1960s, I happened into a side room off the MGM Scoring Stage and came upon the fellow who was transferring the MGM opticals to tape masters. I sat there and listened to much of Franz Waxman's CAPTAINS COURAGEOUS, and saw stacks of others waiting for transfer.

Certainly some is missing. We have evidence of that in a few of the releases we have from Lukas---particularly with the LASSIE box set---but even there we were able to get 4 nearly complete scores among the others.

And we have evidence that a lot was lost en masse from approximately the 1946 to 1950 period. That was shown us with the Rozsa box (as well as the late 1940s Rhino musicals, particularly THE PIRATE, which had to be cobbled together.) But considering overall that we have near complete musicals CDs (from Rhino) covering almost every year in the 1935-1950 period, much of it in stereo, means that there is other stuff as well. Musicals were not recorded on different film stock than dramatic scores, or vaulted/stored differently, so there is no reason to believe that dramatic scores suffered different rates of deterioration than musicals in this same period.

I'd bet that there are at least 300 viable scores still available from the 1930-1950 MGM period, and probably 50-75 from the 1950s.

THE MAJOR PROBLEM IS that many of the filmmusic fans on this board have biases against musicals, as well as biases against certain of the MGM composers. That's what makes delving into the Golden Age MGM catalog a difficult proposition. If you can't sell it here, you probably can't sell it anywhere. I'm not sure there's any different attitude toward the Fox or Paramount library. Sure, everyone will say they'd buy Alfred Newman or Victor Young, but will they in any numbers? And how many will plunk down their money for Alice Faye, Don Ameche, Dick Haymes, June Haver, Betty Grable, Dorothy Lamour, Betty Hutton, or Bing Crosby singing their soundtrack hearts out?

Then we also have the "packaging" purists whose belief is that whatever is released must be remastered, packaged colorfully, and in good contemporary sound. This is all to the good, but it costs a lot of money to do this, and, for myself, just having the original material to listen to in any surviving condition at all is a welcome miracle.

I have been calling for a Warner Archive-type boutique CDR release plan like what has been suggested for many, many years.

The difference between my idea and others is that the studios would put next to no money into it, thus they wouldn't be out much and could afford to just allow it out for the price that was to be charged. The material on this kind of generic CDR would be the raw session masters with slates and no corrections, just as they came off the vaulted masters. It would be up to us---each of us, or in partnership---to assemble this stuff into a proper listening experience if that was what we wanted. Personally I've always felt that hearing the raw music sessions were often as interesting and involving as hearing an edited master. (Poor Thor---he'll cringe at this idea!)

The pre-take mike chatter between a 16-year-old Judy Garland and Haley and Lahr on the OZ sessions is priceless, and incredibly touching, and it raises goose-pimples to hear the orchestra applause after the recorded take of the main title of GONE WITH THE WIND. These were important moments in Hollywood musical history and even as historical artifacts should not be lost to time and deterioration.

The ultimate question is.....Would any of you buy unedited versions of Kaper's score for GASLIGHT, Stothart's score for MARIE ANTOINETTE, Waxman's score for THE ADVENTURES OF HUCKLEBERRY FINN, or any of the unreleased musicals if that was the only way the studios could afford to do this and this was the only way for us to get them?

In some instances we did that back in the 1950s-1970s, and I'm still here to talk about it, so it didn't have too deleterious an effect on my music-listening pleasures in the end ! smile

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 17, 2014 - 2:55 PM   
 By:   John B. Archibald   (Member)

I'd buy all of them.

But, if they're just going to be CD-R's, doesn't that make them only as long-lasting as any b**t?

 
 Posted:   Jan 17, 2014 - 4:00 PM   
 By:   George Komar   (Member)

I'd buy all of them.

But, if they're just going to be CD-R's, doesn't that make them only as long-lasting as any b**t?


Well, nothing's forever in this world, but the CD-Rs would last at least as long as the old-timers (like myself) who would purchase them. smile

Nevertheless, they can be copied onto hard drives or USB sticks or onto backup CD-Rs for personal preservation.

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 17, 2014 - 6:17 PM   
 By:   manderley   (Member)

.....Nevertheless, they can be copied onto hard drives or USB sticks or onto backup CD-Rs for personal preservation.....


For things that I truly want to preserve and have access to many years down the road, I make three copies---each on a different commercial brand of CDR blank. I figure that if one brand is unexpectedly not as good as another and begins to deteriorate early, then it's likely I still have two more chances to have a good one, which I can then copy again. With the cheap cost of each of the CDR (or DVDR) blanks, you can essentially protect yourself with three copies for the total cost of under $1.

Some years ago, I did have a CDR that became unplayable and I hadn't made a backup copy for myself so I was out-of-luck until I remembered that I HAD made a copy for a friend and so I borrowed that copy back, duped it and had a new master, before returning the gift copy.

I have supplementary hard drives, and USB sticks, and all the rest, but this system seems to work well for me for long term backup storage of rarely accessed material (as long as the backup discs are labelled and filed away carefully).

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 24, 2014 - 2:25 PM   
 By:   joec   (Member)

Warner Archive is re-issueing THE WIZARD OD OZ soundtrack formerly on the Rhino label. Maybe this is the begining?

http://www1.screenarchives.com/title_detail.cfm/ID/26677/THE-WIZARD-OF-OZ-ORIGINAL-MOTION-PICTURE-SOUNDTRACK/

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 24, 2014 - 3:13 PM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

Warner Archive is re-issuing THE WIZARD OF OZ soundtrack formerly on the Rhino label. Maybe this is the beginning?

http://www1.screenarchives.com/title_detail.cfm/ID/26677/THE-WIZARD-OF-OZ-ORIGINAL-MOTION-PICTURE-SOUNDTRACK/



Interesting. Neither the SAE nor the Amazon listing have any indication that this is anything other than a pressed CD.

 
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