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Batman (1966)
Music by Neal Hefti, Nelson Riddle
Batman Batman
Click to enlarge images.
Price: $50.00
Limited #: 4000
View CD Page at SAE Store
Line: Silver Age
CD Release: November 2000
Catalog #: Vol. 3, No. 7
# of Discs: 1

Holy Heroes!

What's this? The Dynamic Duo in their first FULL COLOR, full-length big screen adventure? Adam West's hyperbolically serious Caped Crusader aside Burt Ward's hyperkinetic Boy Wonder, piloting an array of Bat-vehicles the likes of which the world has never seen! With these scions of justice on the horizon, what has Gotham City, and indeed the world, to fear? But wait!

Holy Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse!

Could it be? A thought so diabolical we scarcely dare give it utterance: The Riddler, Catwoman, The Joker, and the Penguin...ALL WORKING TOGETHER? A group of foul feathered fiends sporting jet-powered umbrellas, an exploding octopus, and a penguin-shaped pre-atomic submarine? Three mind-bogglingly over-the-top character actors (Frank Gorshin, Cesar Romero and Burgess Meredith) and one fabulous babe in leather (former Miss America Lee Meriweather) face off against the Caped Crusaders in the 1966 theatrical movie that introduced ABC's adventure series to an international audience.

Holy Restoration!

Authentic Bat-music has been hard to come by for fans of the TV series. Two albums were released by Neal Hefti, the composer of the title music, but these albums had no connection to the music heard on the show. The underscores were composed by band leader and arranger Nelson Riddle, who created a memorable, rhythmically-driven sound for the series, referencing Hefti's familiar title motif for the Batmobile but mostly creating his own mood with shifting woodwind lines, big band-flavored fight music, and distinctive musical stingers for each of the show's supervillains. Riddle expanded on this style for the feature film, which allowed him to write sustained action cues for location sequences. Since the 1966 movie featured Batman's most famous villains, Riddle's exciting score is a perfect distillation of his approach to the series, and its extended passages make it a more satisfactory listening experience than any random selection of series cues would have.

Holy Priceless Collection Of Etruscan Snoods!

Riddle's compositions for the movie are robust, including a mock-patriotic prologue, a riveting title tune that dynamically introduces all of the villain motifs, propulsive traveling music for the Bat-vehicles, piratical cues for the Penguin's henchman, generous helpings of Hefti's Batman theme, and showcase presentation of the series' swinging, brass-punctuated fight music. Also included is the slinky sex music for Miss Kitka's seduction of millionaire Bruce Wayne; the morose song "Plaisir d'Amore" that plays as the two first rendezvous and later reprises when Wayne (as Batman) tragically discovers that he's been duped by none other than Catwoman; and finally, the straight television rendition of Neil Hefti's Batman theme. Nearly 66 minutes of superheroic Bat-music in crystal clear monophonic Bat-sound!

Neal Hefti Scores on FSM
About the Composer

Neal Hefti (1922-2008) parlayed a big band and songwriting career into an influential run as a film and TV composer largely in the 1960s, when he wrote the famous "Batman" and "The Odd Couple" themes. He had a knack for melody and instrumental color in the Mancini-era of sophisticated pop/orchestral scoring for "light" adult subject matter—but he could also do other genres, as with the western Duel at Diablo. Everything he laid his hands on ended up with a polished, fresh and tuneful sound.IMDB

Nelson Riddle Scores on FSM
About the Composer

Nelson Riddle (1921-1985) is perhaps the greatest arranger of all time; his work for Frank Sinatra alone is legendary. His film and TV credits include theatrical outgrowths of his Rat Pack music (the original Ocean's Eleven), longrunning '60s and '70s TV series like Route 66Batman (of which FSM released the feature film version) and Emergency, and TV movies and miniseries extending into the 1980s. IMDB

Comments (34):Log in or register to post your own comments
Holy real Batman music...

I'm so glad FSM produced this CD. It's almost as good as having the original soundtrack to the TV series since most of the themes, including the main recurring villains' themes from the TV show, all appear here in the movie score.

When Batman debuted in '65 I was in third grade and it was the first time I was completely captivated by a TV show. I became a huge Batman fan and was even nicknamed Batman by some of my classmates because of my mania. Funny how it was a serious adventure show back then to kids and a comedy to adults. That's hard to do, but the producers really pulled it off well.

Anyway, thanks again FSM for helping me finally get some real Batman music, not the third party crap I bought when I was a kid. Nelson Riddle, and later Billy May, greatly contributed to making this a pop culture classic...and Neal Hefti too.

Same Bat Time, Same Bat Channel...

When I was a young tyke I watched Batman every week , and I loved this movie, I got the biggest kick out of the scene where Batman is running around with a bomb trying to get rid of it , and running into the Salvation Army and such , even small ducks, Great.
I bought this cd when FSM released it right away.

The Salvation army band gag is one of my favourite uses of source music in a film. Very funny. Tati would have been proud of some of that stuff.

Funny how it was a serious adventure show back then to kids and a comedy to adults.

Yeah, I was at just the right age to take it deadly serious. I can remember one night my parents were howling at an Adam West line and I shouted "Don't laugh!" They made me so mad by laughing at my hero. And they found me funny as well.

I used to tape the episodes on my little reel to reel tape recorder so my kid brother who was off normally playing little league basketball could at least catch the audio. I still have the old soundtrack from the tv show(mostly dialog) and I had the 45 of the theme.
I remember buying the movie related topps cards which had a larger picture composed by putting 4 of the reverse sides togother. A pity the movie was made before Batgirl showed up on the series. It was also a pity Julie Newmar wasn't Catwoman. The music brings back all those memories.

I second the motion that I wish Julie Newmar was the catwoman in the movie. If I remember right, she was my first crush as a boy. I mean that tall slender body in the skintight catsuit. And she had those intruiging eyes. When I watched the series again not too long ago I felt the same way, only she seemed hotter than ever! Purrrrrfect!

That said, not having her play Catwoman doesn't detract a bit from this fine CD, which is the point of these comments after all!

I second the motion that I wish Julie Newmar was the catwoman in the movie. If I remember right, she was my first crush as a boy. I mean that tall slender body in the skintight catsuit. And she had those intruiging eyes. When I watched the series again not too long ago I felt the same way, only she seemed hotter than ever!


Lee Merriweather was fine, although she will always be Barnaby Jones' daughter.

I second the motion that I wish Julie Newmar was the catwoman in the movie.

Julie Newmar will always be catwoman.

I love this movie and score. I actually never had a problem with Lee Meriwhether as Catwoman. Actually, I think she did a better job as "Kitka" then Julie would have. Julie is sexy as the day is long, but she was - well - weird. She had a very distanced acting style and may not have pulled off the romantic scenes with Bruce Wayne quite as well. But, you never know.

Either way, she was better than Eartha Kitt.

I do remember that one cue seems to be missing from the CD that I always liked. It's a short, fairly inconsequential cue, but still; it's the kind of "traveling" trumpet music as Kitka drives up to the Ye Olde Benbow Tavern, after the press conference. It's a nice jazzy riff, but - as I said - minor. The album is amazing.

There's a production detail about the music on this CD that got overlooked in the past that I just discovered today. For the source track "Plaisir d'Amour" the notes say, "A French lounge singer serenades Bruce Wayne and Miss Kitka with a famous melody...." The singer is never identified in the notes or in the credits.

It turns out, the "French lounge singer" in that scene is actually Julie Gregg, who had just played the Penguin's henchmoll Finella in the last episode of Season 1 (with the movie beginning production right away). She even wears the same gown she wore in the final scene of her episode.

Considering that in her episode as Penguin's moll, Julie was affecting a high-pitched Marilyn Monroe voice, it's no wonder that her actual singing voice for this brief walk-on didn't make even diehard Batfans recognize her at first! But Julie did have quite a fine singing background and went on to win a Tony nomination for the 1968 musical, "The Happy Time." (She also later had a regular role as a nightclub singer on the short-lived TV series "Banyon")

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Track List
Click on each musician name for more credits

Leader (Conductor):
Nelson Riddle

Meyer (Mike) Rubin

Russell Cheever, Gene Cipriano, Justin Gordon, Harry Klee, Abe Most, Edward J. Rosa, William A. Ulyate

French Horn:
Vincent N. DeRosa, Harry Schmidt

John Clyman, Robert Fowler, Carroll "Cappy" Lewis, Clarence "Shorty" Sherock

Ray Klein, Richard "Dick" Nash, Tommy Pederson, Phillip A. Teele

George F. Boujie

Artie Kane

Robert F. Bain, Herb Ellis, Alton R. "Al" Hendrickson

Richard Cornell, Stan Levey, Harold L. "Hal" Rees

Orchestra Manager:
Urban Thielmann

Ralph Fera, Camillo Fidelibus, Dominic John Fidelibus, Ernest Rosecrans, Paul Sprosty

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