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 Posted:   Feb 3, 2005 - 4:46 PM   
 By:   dashrr   (Member)

With 'The Enemy Within' and 'Doomsday Machine' I think he provided the best music (not counting the features) for the televised Trek series (all of the franchise series) with Fred Steiner and George Duning coming in second and third...Fried, Fielding and Courage would also receive honorable mention

 Posted:   Feb 3, 2005 - 6:24 PM   
 By:   Jeff Bond   (Member)

Well, I give Fried and Fielding more than honorable mention. I do rate Kaplan's contributions to the show very highly though--both his scores were spectacular, defining works for the sound of the series. Steiner probably did the most to define the overall approach to music on the show, however, and he was the only composer there from the beginning to the bitter end. Duning was probably the most prestigious film composer to work on the show and both he and Fried contributed incredibly distinctive scores that were a genre unto themselves. Fielding's are kind of an acquired taste but "Spectre of the Gun" has some wonderful textures and given that it was done around the time of The Wild Bunch it's quite notable as a crossover between film and television.

 Posted:   Feb 3, 2005 - 9:05 PM   
 By:   dashrr   (Member)

Agree with you too....Steiners Mirror Mirror and Dunings The Empath are first is Frieds Amok Time. Kaplan's score for Doomsday Machine served the second season very well...Duning's Empath score always brought me to tears especially its use in 'Reqeium for Methusalah at the end when McCoy and Spock are helping Kirk 'to forget' his love for Louise Sorel's character...can't remember her name

 Posted:   Feb 3, 2005 - 9:59 PM   
 By:   Bill Finn   (Member)

I mostly think that it was Steiner and Courage who kind of defined the music for Star Trek. So many cues by both were re-used to good effect in many other episodes.

But I think the individual contributions from composers such as Duning, Kaplan, Fielding and Fried certainly were exception as well.

 Posted:   Feb 3, 2005 - 10:00 PM   
 By:   Moonie   (Member)

There all good.Theres nothing like the classic ST TV music, I love it all.

 Posted:   Feb 4, 2005 - 3:14 AM   
 By:   Membership Expired   (Member)

Was Sol Kaplan STAR TREK'S best composer?

*Cough* Jerry Goldsmith *cough*

 Posted:   Feb 4, 2005 - 4:36 AM   
 By:   zooba   (Member)

Sometimes wonder how great it would have been if Goldsmith scored some of the Original TV Eps. What treasures those scores would be now. Well, probably in another alternate Universe or Timeline he did. And those inhabitants are enjoying them.


 Posted:   Feb 4, 2005 - 5:23 AM   
 By:   Hector   (Member)

I read (or heard on one of his radio interviews) that Goldsmith had been asked to write for the television series (don't remember if it was an episode or the actual theme), but there was always some conflict in scheduling.

 Posted:   Feb 4, 2005 - 7:27 AM   
 By:   Heath   (Member)

It's amazing that so many varied musical voices could coalesce into "The Sound" of Star Trek. But they did. Those scores have become a single, homogeneous entity of distinctive power. Therefore, it's difficult to select a particular composer. However, I'd go for Kaplan. There are things going on in his scores that I still haven't quite heard the likes of. Perhaps Alex North's sound is a distant cousin.

A score like The Enemy Within (dark, soulful and brutal) is television music beyond the call of duty, I'd say. Superb orchestrations. And of course, where would Jaws be without The Doomsday Machine? wink

It's always saddened me a little that Kaplan didn't get a bigger bite of the film music pie. I'd like to know more about him.


 Posted:   Feb 4, 2005 - 12:30 PM   
 By:   Jehannum   (Member)

Yeah ... Kaplan's music is easily my favourite of the original series.

The texture of sound on Doomsday Machine is lovely. So many ideas come through.

I think his sound would appeal to those who love Bernard Herrmann's or Debussy's music for their use of orchestral colour.

 Posted:   Feb 4, 2005 - 12:32 PM   
 By:   Scott McOldsmith   (Member)

*Cough* Jerry Goldsmith *cough*

I think they're referring strictly to the original series. Goldsmith didn't compose anything for the show.

 Posted:   Feb 4, 2005 - 12:37 PM   
 By:   Scott McOldsmith   (Member)

Sometimes wonder how great it would have been if Goldsmith scored some of the Original TV Eps. What treasures those scores would be now. Well, probably in another alternate Universe or Timeline he did. And those inhabitants are enjoying them.


I never found his TV scores to be his best work. Be it the size of the orchestra or the lack of time, but I just never really got into his television soundtracks. Well, that's not quite true, I always loved his score for Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea and his UNCLE and Barnaby Jones main themes were smashing. But otherwise, a lot of the stuff I've heard (not much, only what's on album) I had found rather grating. His work for films always blew them away for me.

So, Goldsmith on the original Star Trek? I wonder if it would have been as well liked as his movie work or even as much as the work o Gerald Fried or Sol Kaplan. I mean, I enjoyed Walter Scharf's music in UNCLE more than Goldsmith's. But, that's just my view, so there ya go.

BTW - I found John Williams' work on 60's TV to be absolutely fabulous. I would have loved to hear his ideas on Trek.

 Posted:   Feb 4, 2005 - 2:51 PM   
 By:   Jeff Bond   (Member)

Williams' sensibility on Lost in Space definitely crosses over with some of the things Steiner did on Star Trek.

 Posted:   Feb 4, 2005 - 2:52 PM   
 By:   zooba   (Member)

In the "6 Degree's of Jerry Goldsmith" realm, Jerry would be connected to Sol Kaplan, by scoring two pictures for Sol's son, director Jonathan Kaplan...LOVE FIELD and BAD GIRLS.


Also, with all this talk of STAR TREK music, wouldn't it be cool if Jeff Bond's STAR TREK Music Book was adapted into a video Documentary and contain Film Interviews with all the living Composer's and Related Footage, possibly scoring stage stuff etc? How bout it Jeff? Of course something like this could be costly, I'm sure, but It'd be awesome.

 Posted:   Feb 4, 2005 - 4:57 PM   
 By:   Nesius   (Member)

I am in total agreement with the general sentiment here. Sol Kaplan's music was exceptional. I personally feel that the Doomsday Machine was in many ways superior to Williams's later Jaws. I can't believe Kaplan achieved such a masterpiece with such a tiny orchestra. There were also some stunning performances by the musicians!
Fred Steiner defined the "sound" of the Classic Series. Where would Classic Trek music be without the Corbomite Maneuver or Balance of Terror/Mirror Mirror? I lament that we never got a third Varese Steiner disc. Who Mourns for Adonis and Elaan of Troyus were amazing scores, and, according to Jeff Bond's Music of Star Trek, Steiner's personal favorites.
Duning's Empath is great, as well!

 Posted:   Feb 4, 2005 - 9:18 PM   
 By:   dashrr   (Member)

Agree all too much here...I like how Kaplan exploited the Star Trek theme (Courage) with his variances of orchestration...his theme for the USS Constellation, the dark brooding music during the "..they say there's no devil Jim.." scene, Those great blasting horns for the Planet Killer, the sympathetic tones for the maddening and guilt-ridden Decker during his escape and dramatic death (Windom Unforgettable here) and then the great Final confrontation between the Constellation and the Planet Killer for the best episode Star Trek had...and I love almost ALL of them!

 Posted:   Feb 5, 2005 - 8:55 PM   
 By:   Nesius   (Member)

I forgot another unforgettable aspect to Kaplan's score for Doomsday Machine: The virtuoso trumpet THEME for the transporter beam! To my knowledge, it's the only transporter beam theme Trek ever got.

 Posted:   Feb 6, 2005 - 7:20 AM   
 By:   Heath   (Member)

Yes, the transporter motif (Going Aboard) is a brilliant little touch, and it's followed by that amazing passage for unison cellos and tuba - full of completely sincere compassion. I think Sol must have had a deep heart.


 Posted:   Feb 6, 2005 - 4:56 PM   
 By:   John C Winfrey   (Member)

I like many of the scores to the series. My favorite composer there would be Steiner. This series along with Thriller, Twilight Zone, and a few others offer some of the best music written for TV series.


 Posted:   Feb 7, 2005 - 10:23 PM   
 By:   Graham S. Watt   (Member)

I just listened to that Sol Kaplan score again. It's great, though I feel the climactic material goes blaringly over-the-top. Not really a criticism, I mean it was a pretty dramatic finale to the episode. What I really like about the Kaplan score is the way he adapts the theme by Courage on cello - now, I always thought that the Alexander Courage theme was a notoriously out of place thing to start with, and even more notoriously difficult to adapt in any way dramatically, but Kaplan did it with honours.

Having said that, my faves from the original series are by Gerald Fried and Fred Steiner. They really, for me, defined the sound of STAR TREK. Alexander Courage of course too. Very underrated composer, a lot more experimental than is given credit for.

So yes, Kaplan, Fried, Steiner, but my heart still goes with Duning, who may not have DEFINED the Trek sound, but whose scores are amongst the most heart-breakingly beautiful for any TV shows.

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