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 Posted:   Jan 30, 2008 - 1:04 AM   
 By:   Stefan Miklos   (Member)

Composer Morton Stevens was born January 30, 1929 and passed away November 11, 1991.

Stevens started his career in the early 1950’s for television. He was the friend of composer Jerry Goldsmith and they worked together on many 1960’s shows: the horror anthology “Thriller” for Hubbell Robinson Productions at Revue Studios (aka Universal television) and three Arena productions in association with MGM (the medical drama “Dr. Kildare”, the espionage series “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.” and the WWII series “Jericho”). Meanwhile, he co-composed a single score for the first season of “Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea” entitled: “The Human Computer”. He was the head of the music department at CBS from 1965.

In 1966, he tookover the second season of the western-espionage series “The Wild Wild West” as a music director and was credited for his work of music supervision but, nevertheless, he arranged the main theme, composed three scores: music bits for the season 2 "The Night of the Returning Dead" (co-composed with Harry Geller that he will find again for “Hawaii Five-O”) and “The Night of the Watery Death” and a complete score for the season 3 “The Night of the Viper”. 1968 allowed Stevens to enter the history of television with his highly popular theme for the cop series “Hawaii Five-O” but wrote the biggest amount of original scores from season 1 to season 12, including the pilot, and he appeared as an actor playing heroin addict drummer Hank in the season 3 “Trouble in Mind” (9/23/1970).

THRILLER

Season 1
1. The Ordeal of Dr. Cordell
2. Trio for Terror
3. The Devil’s Ticket
4. Parasite Mansion
5. A Good Imagination
6. The Prisoner in the Mirror
7. Pigeons from Hell

Season 2
1. The Premature Burial
2. Letter to a Lover
3. A Third for Pinochle
4. Dialogues with Death
5. The Return of Andrew Bentley
6. The Remarkable Mrs. Hawk
7. Portrait Without a Face
8. An Attractive Family
9. WaxWorks
10. La Strega
11. The Storm
12. A Wig for Miss Devore
13. Cousin Tundifer
14. The Incredible Doktor Markesan
15. Flowers of Evil
16. Kill My Love
17. Man of Mystery

DISCOGRAPHY

THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E., vol. 1
http://www.screenarchives.com/title_detail.cfm?ID=3053
THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E., vol. 2
http://www.screenarchives.com/title_detail.cfm?ID=3623
THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E., vol. 3
http://www.screenarchives.com/title_detail.cfm?ID=4082
THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E.: THE FEATURE FILMS
http://www.screenarchives.com/title_detail.cfm?ID=6474
JERICHO
http://www.screenarchives.com/title_detail.cfm?ID=4344

 
 Posted:   Jan 30, 2008 - 1:05 AM   
 By:   Stefan Miklos   (Member)

QUESTIONS
1. Tell me when did you first discover the music of Morton Stevens?
2. What are your favourite scores?
3. What Stevens CD releases do you wish in the future?

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 30, 2008 - 4:50 AM   
 By:   Simon Morris   (Member)

In my case, all three questions posed by Stefan have the same answer: HAWAII FIVE-O.

He did some marvellous work for THE MAN FROM UNCLE - thankfully FSM enabled us to hear it properly for the first time.

I still believe a CD of HAWAII FIVE-O will get to us eventually!

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 30, 2008 - 7:42 AM   
 By:   vinylscrubber   (Member)

Some of Stevens best work were the fine scores he did for some of the CBS made-for-tv films in the 70's--THE HORROR AT 37,000 FEET (a neat little homage to Goldsmith's LIST OF ADRIAN MESSENGER), THE PEOPLE IN 7A, and FACE OF FEAR, among others.

Would that the vaults at Universal be opened and permit his and Goldsmith's THRILLER scores to see the light of day, such a boxed set would that be!
("The Black Box?")

 
 Posted:   Jan 30, 2008 - 8:45 AM   
 By:   Stefan Miklos   (Member)



Would that the vaults at Universal be opened and permit his and Goldsmith's THRILLER scores to see the light of day, such a boxed set would that be!
("The Black Box?")




I would call it "The bloody box"!

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 30, 2008 - 8:59 AM   
 By:   persuaders   (Member)

1.HAWAII FIVE-O
2.HAWAII FIVE-O/POLICE WOMAN/WHEELS/CODENAME: DIAMOND HEAD/SHE WAITS, .........EVERYTHING !!!
3.- POLICE WOMAN AND HAWAII FIVE-O

 
 Posted:   Jan 30, 2008 - 1:04 PM   
 By:   MRAUDIO   (Member)

Nice thread - always glad to see the great Morton Stevens noticed for his outstanding contribution to Television Music.

As always, it would be wonderful to see his scores from HAWAII FIVE-0 and POLICE WOMAN released - also, his emmy-nominated score WHEELS would be a great, great release. If we can get that and his scores from THRILLER out on CD, that would be wonderful. Also, as mentoned, any of his CBS-TV work would be great to have, as well.

Some other great Morton Stevens scores:

THE MANIONS OF AMERICA (TV, 1981)
BACKSTAIRS AT THE WHITE HOUSE (TV,1979)
HARDLY WORKING (Jerry Lewis film, 1981)
FUGITIVE FAMILY (TV Movie, 1980)
THE STRANGERS IN 7A (TV MOVIE, 1972)

The titles above are some of Stevens' best work - these woud make great CD releases. Also, Morton Stevens wrote the score and song arrangements to the 1985 TV version of Irwin Allen's ALICE IN WONDERLAND.

I'm still hoping that we will see some Morton Stevens CD releases this year - such a underrated Composer - it's about time.

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 30, 2008 - 1:27 PM   
 By:   Preston Neal Jones   (Member)

Thank you, Stefan! On a Jerry Goldsmith THRILLER thread just a week or so ago, I couldn't remember the title of Trio For Terror, so it was hard to ascertain if it was a Goldsmith or a Stevens score. I fell in love with those two composers when watching and reel-to-reel recording THRILLER as a kid. I have to wonder at the fates, that one went on to big screen glory, while the other shone on in the smaller pond of TV.

And yes, I'd love to have THRILLER scores on CD. Pigeons From Hell is my favorite Stevens episode contribution.

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 30, 2008 - 1:31 PM   
 By:   steve jongeward   (Member)

I guess I'd say I grew up with Stevens...due to being plopped in front of the Zenith console from infancy...and of course, Goldsmith and Williams as well.
I'd love to finally hear Stevens' (et al) HAWAII FIVE-O someday on CD or iTunes - or whatever...I'd just love to own it. I'm a HUGE fan of H5O and all the brilliant groovy music that came out of the series.
Can anyone explain why the LP (at least) hasn't been transfered to CD by now?!?
(one thing I love about the recent DVD sets is the fact that Stevens' theme loops on the menu!)
And now -- with the release of the show on DVD sets -- you'd think now would be the perfect time for a proper soundtrack/score release!
I'm at the point where I'd buy a TURNTABLE/PHONOGRAPH and buy the old LP from eBay just to hear it!!!

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 30, 2008 - 2:01 PM   
 By:   Cricket853   (Member)

The Thriller series is what really brought Morton Stevens to my listening ears, and just recently. All those many years ago when I use to watch a lot more TV than I do now, I really did not pay too much attention to the composers, unlike music for the big screen. I'm sure I heard a lot of his work, I just did not associate a given name with the episodes.

Goldsmith and Stevens work on Thriller is very impressive. At times, I find it difficult to differentiate between the two. Goldsmith broke the dominance of Pete Ruggolo with "The Cheaters", and then when Stevens came on board, the two virtually took over. I was surprised to see "The Hollow Watcher" scored by Sidney Fine & William Lava. Although I don't see Lava's name much, I do know of him through his association with the scoring for the big bug movie of the 1950's, "The Deadly Mantis".

But in getting back to Morton Stevens, is it safe to say that his work his certainly under represented on CD? We do need a Thriller box set of music let alone a commercial release of the TV series on DVD.

 
 Posted:   Jan 30, 2008 - 5:37 PM   
 By:   MRAUDIO   (Member)

Composer Morton Stevens was born January 30, 1929 and passed away November 11, 1991.

Stevens started his career in the early 1950’s for television. He was the friend of composer Jerry Goldsmith and they worked together on many 1960’s shows: the horror anthology “Thriller” for Hubbell Robinson Productions at Revue Studios (aka Universal television) and three Arena productions in association with MGM (the medical drama “Dr. Kildare”, the espionage series “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.” and the WWII series “Jericho”). Meanwhile, he co-composed a single score for the first season of “Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea” entitled: “The Human Computer”. He was the head of the music department at CBS from 1965.

In 1966, he tookover the second season of the western-espionage series “The Wild Wild West” as a music director and was credited for his work of music supervision but, nevertheless, he arranged the main theme, composed three scores: music bits for the season 2 "The Night of the Returning Dead" (co-composed with Harry Geller that he will find again for “Hawaii Five-O”) and “The Night of the Watery Death” and a complete score for the season 3 “The Night of the Viper”. 1968 allowed Stevens to enter the history of television with his highly popular theme for the cop series “Hawaii Five-O” but wrote the biggest amount of original scores from season 1 to season 12, including the pilot, and he appeared as an actor playing heroin addict drummer Hank in the season 3 “Trouble in Mind” (9/23/1970).

THRILLER

Season 1
1. The Ordeal of Dr. Cordell
2. Trio for Terror
3. The Devil’s Ticket
4. Parasite Mansion
5. A Good Imagination
6. The Prisoner in the Mirror
7. Pigeons from Hell

Season 2
1. The Premature Burial
2. Letter to a Lover
3. A Third for Pinochle
4. Dialogues with Death
5. The Return of Andrew Bentley
6. The Remarkable Mrs. Hawk
7. Portrait Without a Face
8. An Attractive Family
9. WaxWorks
10. La Strega
11. The Storm
12. A Wig for Miss Devore
13. Cousin Tundifer
14. The Incredible Doktor Markesan
15. Flowers of Evil
16. Kill My Love
17. Man of Mystery

DISCOGRAPHY

THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E., vol. 1
http://www.screenarchives.com/title_detail.cfm?ID=3053
THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E., vol. 2
http://www.screenarchives.com/title_detail.cfm?ID=3623
THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E., vol. 3
http://www.screenarchives.com/title_detail.cfm?ID=4082
THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E.: THE FEATURE FILMS
http://www.screenarchives.com/title_detail.cfm?ID=6474
JERICHO
http://www.screenarchives.com/title_detail.cfm?ID=4344


Also, Stefan, there is ACT OF PIRACY / THE GREAT WHITE available from Prometheus Records - other than this and what you mentioned above, that's all - a real shame...:-(

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 30, 2008 - 7:39 PM   
 By:   CindyLover   (Member)

In 1966, he tookover the second season of the western-espionage series “The Wild Wild West” as a music director and was credited for his work of music supervision but, nevertheless, he arranged the main theme, composed three scores: music bits for the season 2 "The Night of the Returning Dead" (co-composed with Harry Geller that he will find again for “Hawaii Five-O”) and “The Night of the Watery Death” and a complete score for the season 3 “The Night of the Viper”.

"The Night of the Watery Death" is actually tracked (note that it carries the "Music Supervision: Morton Stevens" credit), and "The Night of the Vipers" may have given him "Music by" credit but most of the episode is definitely tracked as well (the only non-familiar music I can recall is the cue for when the Vipers nail Jim inside the coffin and send it into the river).

 
 Posted:   Jan 30, 2008 - 8:05 PM   
 By:   MRAUDIO   (Member)

In 1966, he tookover the second season of the western-espionage series “The Wild Wild West” as a music director and was credited for his work of music supervision but, nevertheless, he arranged the main theme, composed three scores: music bits for the season 2 "The Night of the Returning Dead" (co-composed with Harry Geller that he will find again for “Hawaii Five-O”) and “The Night of the Watery Death” and a complete score for the season 3 “The Night of the Viper”.

"The Night of the Watery Death" is actually tracked (note that it carries the "Music Supervision: Morton Stevens" credit), and "The Night of the Vipers" may have given him "Music by" credit but most of the episode is definitely tracked as well (the only non-familiar music I can recall is the cue for when the Vipers nail Jim inside the coffin and send it into the river).


The WWW episode, "The Night Of The Vipers" was a tracked episode - the music heard was actually taken from a GUNSMOKE episode, entitled "Major Glory" (1967), that Stevens scored - BTW, this earned Morton Stevens a 1968 Emmy nomination for this GUNSMOKE episode - a great score, indeed...:-)

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 30, 2008 - 8:15 PM   
 By:   OnyaBirri   (Member)

Question:

How on earth did you leave his "Hawaii Five-O" LP out of your discography?

 
 Posted:   Jan 31, 2008 - 12:52 AM   
 By:   Stefan Miklos   (Member)

Question:

How on earth did you leave his "Hawaii Five-O" LP out of your discography?


It's not on CD.

 
 Posted:   Jan 31, 2008 - 12:52 AM   
 By:   Stefan Miklos   (Member)



Also, Stefan, there is ACT OF PIRACY / THE GREAT WHITE available from Prometheus Records - other than this and what you mentioned above, that's all - a real shame...:-(



I should mention TELEVISION DISCOGRAPHY.

 
 Posted:   Jan 31, 2008 - 12:58 AM   
 By:   Stefan Miklos   (Member)



"The Night of the Watery Death" is actually tracked (note that it carries the "Music Supervision: Morton Stevens" credit), and "The Night of the Vipers" may have given him "Music by" credit but most of the episode is definitely tracked as well (the only non-familiar music I can recall is the cue for when the Vipers nail Jim inside the coffin and send it into the river).



Read what I state: bits of music are in "The Night of the Watery Death", especially the music box moody harbor music.
Indeed, "The Night of the Vipers" contains stock music (Cf. "TNot Circus of Death+Jack O'Diamonds+Running Death+Firebrand+Assassin" and even some Johann Strauss for Vance Beaumont's diner) but also long dense original material by Stevens.

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 31, 2008 - 4:13 AM   
 By:   Simon Morris   (Member)

Question:

How on earth did you leave his "Hawaii Five-O" LP out of your discography?


It's not on CD.




With respect Stefan, that's not really a valid reason for omitting it. And not so long back it was re-released as a vinyl album (at least in Europe) anyway, so there is no reason why it should be excluded, as long as 'LP only' is appended to the entry.

Let's hope that a more substantial CD finally surfaces sometime this year.

 
 
 Posted:   Jan 31, 2008 - 8:30 AM   
 By:   steve jongeward   (Member)

All this Morton Stevens chat got me all pumped up to hear more from this fantastic composer other than the MAN FROM UNCLE (etc) that I have. So as I send out psychic waves into the score universe for a HAWAII FIVE-O release...I checked PROMETHEUS' Stevens' GREAT WHITE, etc., over at BUYSOUNDTRAX -- sadly, it is OUT OF STOCK!
Sometimes I fear the Polar Ice Sheets will be gone before we see the release of all the great music still out there!

 
 Posted:   Jan 31, 2008 - 8:55 AM   
 By:   MRAUDIO   (Member)

All this Morton Stevens chat got me all pumped up to hear more from this fantastic composer other than the MAN FROM UNCLE (etc) that I have. So as I send out psychic waves into the score universe for a HAWAII FIVE-O release...I checked PROMETHEUS' Stevens' GREAT WHITE, etc., over at BUYSOUNDTRAX -- sadly, it is OUT OF STOCK!
Sometimes I fear the Polar Ice Sheets will be gone before we see the release of all the great music still out there!


Try this:

http://screenarchives.com/title_detail.cfm?ID=1557

 
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