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The Shoes of the Fisherman/Where Eagles Dare (1968)
Music by Ron Goodwin, Alex North
The Shoes of the Fisherman/Where Eagles Dare The Shoes of the Fisherman/Where Eagles Dare
Click to enlarge images.
Price: $25.00
Limited #: 3000
View CD Page at SAE Store
Line: Silver Age
CD Release: April 2004
Catalog #: Vol. 7, No. 6
# of Discs: 2

Released by Special Arrangement with Turner Classic Movies Music

Alex North had his roots in the American stage but achieved his greatest fame in the epic film genre: his scores for Spartacus (1960), Cleopatra (1963) and The Agony and the Ecstasy (1965) are beloved for their scope and grandeur. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) was to be another North epic but ended up with Stanley Kubrick's selections of classical music. Later in 1968 North was able to use some of his 2001 ideas in M-G-M's The Shoes of the Fisherman, a colossal modern-day tale about the first Russian Pope.

The Shoes of the Fisherman was based on a novel by Morris L. West and starred Anthony Quinn as Kiril Lakota, a political prisoner who rejoins the Vatican after his release. When the Pope dies, Kiril emerges as an unlikely successor, and must set the course for the Vatican's role in a current world crisis. The film also starred Laurence Olivier as the Soviet Premier, David Janssen as an American journalist, and Oskar Werner as a Jesuit philosopher and friend of Kiril's.

Alex North applied three major approaches for the film: For Quinn's Russian character, North wrote a Ukrainian-styled folk theme, orchestrated for anywhere from a full symphony to small folk ensemble. David Janssen's TV journalist is in the midst of a marital crisis, and North provided a romantic, pop-flavored theme, also used for Kiril's fascination with the modern city of Rome. But it is the score's third area that has long thrilled film music fans: mammoth, crashing chords for the Church itself—not liturgical music, but a modernist symphonic approach for the awesome concept of God on earth. (This is the music derived from North's unused score to 2001.)

The Shoes of the Fisherman was released on LP at the time of the film. FSM's premiere 2CD set features the complete underscore on disc one, remixed and remastered from the six-track 35mm masters, including a bonus section of additional and alternate cues. The score features all the symphonic power for which North is known—at over 100 pieces, it was one of the largest orchestras ever used for film—plus his intimate attention to drama.

Disc two of this release is a "bonus disc" designed to "close the book" on three widescreen M-G-M spectacles which were all released at the end of 1968. FSM has already released these soundtracks, but each has had additional recordings that could not fit on their respective albums: source music and pop-based alternates for The Shoes of the Fisherman (including the full-length liturgical choral recordings made in Rome); Michel Legrand's demo recordings for Ice Station Zebra (FSMCD Vol. 6, No. 2); and Ron Goodwin's LP re-recording of Where Eagles Dare (FSMCD Vol. 6, No. 21).

The entire 2CD set is in stereo. Liner notes are by Jeff Bond and Lukas Kendall.

Ron Goodwin Scores on FSM
About the Composer

English composer Ron Goodwin (1925-2003) was most active in the 1960s and '70s and beloved for his tuneful war scores for "boys own" adventures—see 633 Squadron, Where Eagles Dare and Force 10 From Navarone. He also wrote charming scores for the Miss Marple mysteries and was successful as a conductor (performing many film music concerts) and recording artist. IMDB

Alex North Scores on FSM
About the Composer

Alex North (1910-1991) changed the sound of movies with A Streetcar Named Desire (1951), the first jazz-based film score. His adventuresome, modernist symphonic style reflected his background in theater and ballet and elevated the tone of everything he touched. He could be both epic and magnificent (Spartacus) as well as melodic and intimate (Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?)—often at the same time. He was a great modernist and dramatist, widely admired by his peers, especially Jerry Goldsmith.In 1986 North became the first composer to receive an Honorary Oscar for lifetime achievement.IMDB

Comments (15):Log in or register to post your own comments
I just got this cd set for my birthday and it exactly filled the bill of what I wanted: something big, loud, and exciting. Nobody can make an orchestra tower over me, the listener, in quite the same way as Alex North did.

And the sound is just as clear and beautiful as if I'm in the same room as the orchestra. I'm really enjoying this.

(And the bigger Alex North fans in the audience will be interested to hear that the first half of the cue titled "Zoo" gets heard again in his score for SOMEBODY KILLED HER HUSBAND (1977).)

This is definitely a disc on my want list. Thanks for the review!

SHOES has been a favorite of mine for many years. It always sounds fresh when I replay it. If you haven't seen the film, you're in for a treat.

Great Alex North record.

I finally acquired this set and it's blowing me away. SHOES is a masterpiece. Highly recommended to anyone who appreciates powerful, thematic, emotive and downright lovely film music. I would have used more adjectives, but I've already exceeded my quota for the evening.


What he said.

And, it has echoes of his score for "2001: A Space Odyssey."

A fine 2 cd set. I really enjoyed Shoes of the Fisherman. Where Eagles Dare has long been a favorite score. I have the other Where Eagles Dare Disc as well. Hard to go wrong with Ron Goodwin and a military score.

In addition to the Alex North score you have the re-recording of Where Eagles Dare as Gary points out above, but you also get the demo versions of themes from Ice Station Zebra.

The thing is this; had I not got The Appointment, Legrand's version of events would not have made any kind of impact on my senses. But, the cyclical nature of the smaller ensembles he used there and for the ISZ demos are so similar I can't but wonder if The Appointment may, in fact, have actually been for demonstration. Even if that is not the case, the very similar techniques applied in both cases is interesting. Admittedly, there is a little more complexity overall to The Appointment cues on the disc for that score - but here rests the case.

I'm enjoying this fabulous release again right now. Shoes is now among my favorite of North's scores (even though I've never seen the film), and Goodwin's LP recording of Eagles is the icing on the cake. Thanks, Lukas and team.

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Track List
Click on each musician name for more credits

Leader (Conductor):
Robert Armbruster, Sam Matlowski

Israel Baker, George Berres, Harry Bluestone, Henry Arthur Brown, Bobby Bruce (aka Robt. Berg), Salvatore Crimi, Kurt Dieterle, Adolph DiTullio, Bonnie J. Douglas (Shure), Elliot Fisher, David Frisina, Irving Geller, Arnold T. Jurasky, Jerome Kasin, Louis Kaufman, Murray Kellner, Varujan Kojian, Bernard Kundell, William Kurasch, Paul Lowenkron, Alfred Lustgarten, Joy Lyle (Sharp), Paul Molchak, Emanuel Moss, Irma W. Neumann, Lou Raderman, Sally Raderman (aka Sarah Kreindler), Henry L. Roth, Ambrose Russo, Sidney Sharp, Jack Shulman, Paul C. Shure, Leon Trebacz, Dorothy M. Wade (Sushel), Heimann Weinstine, Walter S. Wiemeyer

Myer Bello, Gloria Chappell, Dorothy Colton-Pratt, Joseph DiFiore, Alvin Dinkin, Albert Falkove, Cecil Figelski, Allan Harshman, Mary Laporte, Virginia Majewski, Reuben Marcus, Sven Reher, Joseph Reilich, Armand Roth

Justin DiTullio, Marie Fera, Hyman Gold, Lester Harris, Raymond J. Kelley, Jerome Kessler, Raphael "Ray" Kramer, Lucien Laporte, Irving Lipschultz, Kurt Reher, Walter Rower, Frederick R. Seykora, Gloria Strassner, Alfred Wohl

James E. Bond, Jr., Mario Camposano, Frank Granato, Paul V. Keen, Richard F. Kelley, Sr., Milton Kestenbaum, Peter A. Mercurio, Ray Siegel, Robert King Stone

Louise M. DiTullio (Dissman), James R. Horn, Luella Howard, Ethmer Roten, Sylvia Ruderman, June Russo, Sheridon W. Stokes

Norman Benno, Bert Gassman, Arnold Koblentz, Gordon Schoneberg

William H. Calkins, Richard Csomay, Roy A. D'Antonio, Robert A. DeTolve, Charles Gentry, James R. Horn, Don Lodice (Logiudice), Hugo Raimondi, Joe Skufca

Don Christlieb, Charles A. Gould, Lloyd Hildebrand, Jerome Kasper, Jack Marsh, Ray Nowlin

French Horn:
John W. "Jack" Cave, Vincent N. DeRosa, Arthur Frantz, George W. Hyde, Sinclair Lott, Arthur Maebe, Jr., Hyman Markowitz, James M. McGee, George F. Price, Ralph S. Pyle, Gale H. Robinson, Harry Schmidt, Henry Sigismonti

Irving R. Bush, Robert Divall, Robert Fowler, Vito Mangano, Oliver Mitchell, Gerald Peterson, Uan Rasey, Manny Stevens, Thomas M. Stevens, Raymond Triscari, George Werth, Rubin Zarchy, James C. Zito

Milton Bernhart, Norman Fleming, James Henderson, Dick Hyde, Paul V. Keen, Roy Main, Randall Miller, Richard Noel, George M. Roberts, Frank Rosolino, Kenneth Shroyer, Ron Smith

John T. "Tommy" Johnson, Ray Siegel, Donald G. Waldrop

Caesar Giovannini, Artie Kane, Michael A. Lang, John Jack Latimer, Michel H. Mention, Raymond Turner

Robert F. Bain, Ronald J. Benson, Dennis Budimir, Alton R. "Al" Hendrickson, Carol Kaye, Don Lawrence, Leon Stewart, Alfred Viola

John DeRose, Max Gralnick, Leon Stewart

Catherine Gotthoffer (Johnk), Gayle Levant, Dorothy S. Remsen

Carl Fortina, Jack A. Preisner

Dale L. Anderson, Hubert "Hugh" Anderson, Larry Bunker, Frank L. Carlson, Richard Cornell, John Cyr, Charles DeLancey, Frank J. Flynn, Walter Goodwin, Paul N. Humphrey, John Peter Morgando, Harold L. "Hal" Rees, Wallace Carl Snow

Orchestra Manager:
James C. Whelan

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