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 Posted:   Aug 5, 2018 - 12:09 PM   
 By:   Jim Cleveland   (Member)

You know... in all the years I've been on this messageboard, I don't believe it's ever been brought up as to whether the tapes of Herrmann's score for Citizen Kane still exist. Anyone know?

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 5, 2018 - 12:31 PM   
 By:   OnyaBirri   (Member)

Don't know. There are a million versions available, and frankly, I don't think this one holds up well outside of the film.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 5, 2018 - 12:37 PM   
 By:   Preston Neal Jones   (Member)

I think I know what you mean, Onya, with so many short cues crafted to bridge between scenes, a la radio. I'd prefer to say that some parts work better than others when divorced from the film.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 5, 2018 - 12:49 PM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

Has there ever been a soundtrack release from any RKO film (except ones taken from the mixed film tracks or ones that previously appeared on LP)?

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 5, 2018 - 1:06 PM   
 By:   OnyaBirri   (Member)

I think I know what you mean, Onya, with so many short cues crafted to bridge between scenes, a la radio. I'd prefer to say that some parts work better than others when divorced from the film.

It's very schizophrenic and not in a good way, between the dark, dramatic underscore, the upbeat Americana, the newsreel music, the aria. A bunch of disparate sounds and moods that I don't want to experience in one sitting.

That said, I have included the newsreel music on comps of mid-century happy bustling metropolis music, and I have included the Americana on a comp an Autumnal music, also including "The Trouble with Harry" and "Devil and Daniel Webster" suites.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 5, 2018 - 1:17 PM   
 By:   Jim Cleveland   (Member)

Funny... I love the score, and listen to it often!

 
 Posted:   Aug 5, 2018 - 1:21 PM   
 By:   SchiffyM   (Member)

It's very schizophrenic and not in a good way, between the dark, dramatic underscore, the upbeat Americana, the newsreel music, the aria. A bunch of disparate sounds and moods that I don't want to experience in one sitting.

What you call schizophrenia, I would call variety. That said, no, it doesn't hold together as a unified listening experience the way, say, "North by Northwest" does. And some very short cues (including the comically dated "laughing horns") do hamper the listening experience. Still, there's a hell of a lot to love in this score, for me.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 5, 2018 - 1:29 PM   
 By:   OnyaBirri   (Member)

What you call schizophrenia, I would call variety.

Exactly. This is why I love so many late-60s/early-70s scores, because of that delirious quality. For example, Morricone scores that mix orchestral dissonance, a gentle bossa, and a fake rock tune with a free-form trumpet freakout. This and others like it would be good examples of a delirious listening experience where the variety works. But the juxtaposition of stuff on Citizen Kane just does not work for me. I never listen to my copy, except for the within the contexts I listed previously.

 
 Posted:   Aug 5, 2018 - 1:37 PM   
 By:   LordDalek   (Member)

You know... in all the years I've been on this messageboard, I don't believe it's ever been brought up as to whether the tapes of Herrmann's score for Citizen Kane still exist. Anyone know?

Magnetic tape didn't make its American debut until three years after World War II. So no there were never any "tapes" in the first place, just optical stems which RKO junked (only Max Steiner appears to have any foresight in making acetate discs of his works).

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 5, 2018 - 1:43 PM   
 By:   Jim Cleveland   (Member)

It's very schizophrenic and not in a good way, between the dark, dramatic underscore, the upbeat Americana, the newsreel music, the aria. A bunch of disparate sounds and moods that I don't want to experience in one sitting.

What you call schizophrenia, I would call variety. That said, no, it doesn't hold together as a unified listening experience the way, say, "North by Northwest" does. And some very short cues (including the comically dated "laughing horns") do hamper the listening experience. Still, there's a hell of a lot to love in this score, for me.


Hey Schiffy....
Are you talking about that 10-second cue entitled "Thanks!"? If so, I actually recorded that onto the end of my CK tape about 20 times in a row... I LOVE that piece! smile

 
 Posted:   Aug 5, 2018 - 2:59 PM   
 By:   Sigerson Holmes   (Member)

Fun trivia about the origin of the "Oh, Mister Kane" tune in this thread:

https://www.filmscoremonthly.com/board/posts.cfm?forumID=1&pageID=2&threadID=44226&archive=0

 
 Posted:   Aug 5, 2018 - 3:29 PM   
 By:   Essankay   (Member)

Fun trivia about the origin of the "Oh, Mister Kane" tune in this thread:

https://www.filmscoremonthly.com/board/posts.cfm?forumID=1&pageID=2&threadID=44226&archive=0



 
 Posted:   Aug 5, 2018 - 3:49 PM   
 By:   Scott M (Oldsmith)   (Member)

Pretty sure this has come up here before mainly because I think I asked a zillion years ago. I would love the original cues, even on an old 78 archive recording, much like King Kong was released years ago, just to have the original cues. None of the rerecordings have gotten the score right to my satisfaction. A few cues have sustains instead of buttons and are made to be more "listening experience" friendly, and I understand that. But as a fan of the film, all aspects of it, I would love to have the original recordings. It would be a fine listening experience for me.

Or at least love a really close reproduction, much like how MMM used to do their rerecordings.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 5, 2018 - 10:14 PM   
 By:   Primo   (Member)

Pretty sure this has come up here before mainly because I think I asked a zillion years ago. I would love the original cues, even on an old 78 archive recording, much like King Kong was released years ago, just to have the original cues. None of the rerecordings have gotten the score right to my satisfaction. A few cues have sustains instead of buttons and are made to be more "listening experience" friendly, and I understand that. But as a fan of the film, all aspects of it, I would love to have the original recordings. It would be a fine listening experience for me.

Or at least love a really close reproduction, much like how MMM used to do their rerecordings.



This thread prompted me to look for my copy of the 2-disk 1978 LP of the entire original soundtrack.

Called a George Garabedian Production it is on the Mark 56 Records label out of Anaheim, California.

It has notes by one Robert Osborne.

I haven't listened to these LPs in a long time so I don't remember exactly how good the sound is though I imagine it was recorded directly from a copy of the film itself.

Maybe one day I'll have it transcribed to some CDs.

 
 Posted:   Aug 6, 2018 - 3:21 AM   
 By:   Ray Faiola   (Member)

No acetates circulating on KANE. Curiously, much of ALL THAT MONEY CAN BUY survives on acetate. As to other RKO scores released from disc, there was a Roy Webb album several years ago that had surviving cues from several scores (most of Webb's collection was lost in his house fire) including CURSE OF THE CAT PEOPLE. Also, much of THE LOCKET (Webb) survives and, of course, Herrmann's ON DANGEROUS GROUND which was released by FSM.

As to the score itself, I think the NEWS ON THE MARCH music was perfect. Newsreels invariably used existing cues from studio features. And I think the extended end credits sequence using the arrangement of "Charlie Kane" was totally appropriate. Curiously, neither of the full-length rerecordings included this title music. Elmer Bernstein, however, did record it for his Bernard Herrmann album.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 6, 2018 - 5:39 AM   
 By:   OnyaBirri   (Member)

What source did they use for that cheap-o CD combining Kane and the Magnificent Ambersons?

 
 Posted:   Aug 6, 2018 - 11:47 AM   
 By:   Essankay   (Member)

And I think the extended end credits sequence using the arrangement of "Charlie Kane" was totally appropriate. Curiously, neither of the full-length rerecordings included this title music. Elmer Bernstein, however, did record it for his Bernard Herrmann album.


Well, those full-length recordings are focused pretty specifically on Herrmann. Of course, so is the Bernstein album, and frankly I was surprised (and pleased) he included it.

I've often wondered whether part of the reason for the exclusion of the "Charlie Kane" tune is because it would require separate rights/royalties. If so, easier to just leave it out and avoid any complications and/or extra costs. Surely that would be the case with the "Charlie Kane" song, with its new lyrics that have never appeared outside the film (apart from bootlegs).

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 6, 2018 - 2:22 PM   
 By:   Jim Doherty   (Member)

No acetates circulating on KANE. Curiously, much of ALL THAT MONEY CAN BUY survives on acetate. As to other RKO scores released from disc, there was a Roy Webb album several years ago that had surviving cues from several scores (most of Webb's collection was lost in his house fire) including CURSE OF THE CAT PEOPLE. Also, much of THE LOCKET (Webb) survives and, of course, Herrmann's ON DANGEROUS GROUND which was released by FSM.

As to the score itself, I think the NEWS ON THE MARCH music was perfect. Newsreels invariably used existing cues from studio features. And I think the extended end credits sequence using the arrangement of "Charlie Kane" was totally appropriate. Curiously, neither of the full-length rerecordings included this title music. Elmer Bernstein, however, did record it for his Bernard Herrmann album.


I, TOO, LIKE THE END CREDITS MUSIC, ALTHOUGH THE INCLUSION OF IT ON THE BERNSTEIN RECORDING WAS A BIT ODD, AS NOT ONLY WAS IT NOT WRITTEN BY HERRMANN, I DON'T THINK IT WAS ARRANGED BY HIM EITHER. I SEEM TO RECALL IT WAS ARRANGED BY CONRAD SALINGER.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 6, 2018 - 2:24 PM   
 By:   Jim Doherty   (Member)

To Primo:

If you're going to transfer the composite soundtrack to CDs, just grab it from the DVD instead. It sounds better than the Mark 56 LPs. Plus, the LPs have a short sequence missing.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 6, 2018 - 2:30 PM   
 By:   OnyaBirri   (Member)

What source did they use for that cheap-o CD combining Kane and the Magnificent Ambersons?

 
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