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The Big Bus (1976)
Music by David Shire
The Big Bus The Big Bus
Click to enlarge images.
Price: $19.95
Limited #: 2000
View CD Page at SAE Store
Line: Silver Age
CD Release: January 2011
Catalog #: Vol. 14, No. 1
# of Discs: 1

Four years before Airplane!, there was The Big Bus (1976), Paramount’s wacky spoof of the immensely popular disaster movie genre (Airport, The Poseidon Adventure, Earthquake, etc). The Big Bus is the story of Cyclops, the first nuclear-powered bus, on its maiden voyage—non-stop from New York to Denver. The crew of Cyclops must battle not only various technical difficulties (including brake failure), and a bus load of crazy passengers, but a determined effort from an inept criminal mastermind bent on discrediting the massive 75-ton vehicle.

In a year filled with seven other scoring assignments, composer David Shire welcomed the opportunity to write a big, over-the-top orchestral score: “I could pull all the stops out and get as loud and silly as I want to.” Featuring an exciting main theme (occasionally propelled by a pounding pop beat) and a noir-ish love theme, the music supports the onscreen parody with an authentic and contemporary adventure score.
This premiere release of the complete score was prepared under the supervision of the composer—who combined certain cues for home listening pleasure—and remixed by Martin Erskine from the original 16-track 2” masters.
Informative notes by Scott Bettencourt, Jeff Bond and Alexander Kaplan include excerpts from interviews with Shire and Second City alumnus Murphy Dunne, whose outrageous portrayal of lounge singer Tommy Joyce is a comic highlight of the film. Bonus tracks include Dunne’s performance, source cues and alternates.
The Big Bus will take you on an adventurous musical journey with thrills and chills—and a few laughs—along the way. Get on board.
David Shire Scores on FSM
About the Composer

David Shire (b. 1937) is responsible for some of the most acclaimed scores of the 1970s, such as The Taking of Pelham One Two Three, The Conversation and Farewell, My Lovely. His film and television work extends from the late 1960s to the present day (including 2007's Zodiac), consistently excellent in its subtlety, dramatic sensitivity and musical imagination. He has also, with lyricist partner Richard Maltby, enjoyed a successful career in musical theater. IMDB

Comments (47):Log in or register to post your own comments

Wow! I've been wanting this since I saw the movie on it's first release!

I'm on board with this one!

Count me in!

TERRIFIC! Always down for a Shire. I enjoyed this movie as a kid. I look forward to discovering the score -

Finally! Ordered! :)

Fantastic. It's the Towering Shire-port Adventure Quake! And a Tommy Joyce medley, too! "A slow tune, a show tune, a love song, a sad song, but never a bad song... Hey! Six months to live, that's all they give him... so forget about Christmas!" Thanks, Lukas and co.

Woo-hoo - fondly recall the movie and enjoy the music! Bring it on!

"But you're a doctor!"
"Yes, and I intend to remain one."

Thank you Lukas and FSM!

A wonderful trip to disastershire - will sit nicely with The Hindenburg in my collection....

Love the Cannibal quote on the inlay card, pity here wasn't room for:

"Every time I went to the Ajax Motel I was always thinking of you.
That's why I chased them all Kitty, why I bedded them all. It was to think of you.
... But the important thing is, for the rest of my life, I only want to bed you and think of them"

Some other titles have been mentioned on the SAE facebook page... are any of those releases imminent? I ask for the sake of combining shipping.

Thanks, SAE!

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Track List
Click on each musician name for more credits

Leader (Conductor):
David L. Shire

Israel Baker, Tom Buffum, Bonnie J. Douglas (Shure), Anatol Kaminsky, Nathan Kaproff, George Kast, Louis Kaufman, Richard Kaufman, Ezra Kliger, Jacob Krachmalnick, Marvin Limonick, Alfred Lustgarten, David Montagu, Jack Pepper, Linda Rose, Nathan Ross, Ambrose Russo, Haim Shtrum, Albert Steinberg, Gerald Vinci

Denyse N. Buffum, Pamela Goldsmith, Allan Harshman, Myra Kestenbaum, Virginia Majewski, David Schwartz, Milton Thomas

Margaret Aue-Van Wyck, Vance Beach, David Filerman, Lucille Greco (D'Addio), Raymond J. Kelley, Raphael "Ray" Kramer, Edgar Lustgarten, Frederick R. Seykora, Gloria Strassner

Arni Egilsson, Milton Kestenbaum, Meyer (Mike) Rubin

Sheridon W. Stokes

Gene Cipriano, Justin Gordon, Ronald Langinger (aka Ronny Lang), John Lowe, John Neufeld, Melvin Tax, Bob Tricarico

French Horn:
James A. Decker, David A. Duke, Robert E. Henderson, Richard E. Perissi

Maurie Harris, Malcolm Boyd McNab, Anthony "Tony" Terran, Graham Young

Hoyt Bohannon, Richard "Dick" Nash, George M. Roberts, Thomas Shepard

John T. "Tommy" Johnson

Douglas Clare Fischer, Artie Kane

Michael J. Anthony, Dennis Budimir, Lee M. Ritenour, Thomas "Tommy" Tedesco

Fender (electric) Bass:
Charles L. Domanico

Dorothy S. Remsen

Tommy Vig, Kenneth E. Watson

Larry Bunker, Emil Radocchia (Richards)

Phillip Kahgan

Music Consultant:
Jack J. Hayes

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