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The Gypsy Moths (1969)
Music by Elmer Bernstein
The Gypsy Moths The Gypsy Moths
Click to enlarge images.
Price: $19.95
Limited #: 3000
View CD Page at SAE Store
Line: Silver Age
CD Release: August 2002
Catalog #: Vol. 5, No. 12
# of Discs: 1

Released by Special Arrangement with Turner Classic Movies Music

When John Frankenheimer passed away in July 2002, he left a remarkable body of work including such admired films as The Manchurian Candidate, The Young Savages, Grand Prix, Sec onds and the recent Ronin. Frankenheimer excelled at telling human stories in action-based settings, and one of his best is The Gypsy Moths (1969). The film stars Burt Lancaster, Gene Hackman and Scott Wilson as barnstorming skydivers pa ssing through a Kansas town where Lancaster has an affair with a married woman played by Deborah Kerr. Although little seen, Frankenheimer regarded the film as amongst his two or three favorites, and the picture holds up as a quiet masterpiece of characte r and setting.

Elmer Bernstein's score to The Gypsy Moths is one of its strengths, emphasizing the characters' inner melancholy against the backdrop of nostalgic Americana. The robust, action-oriented cues for the skydiving sequences are obviou s highlights, with Bernstein boldly playing up the thrill of the jumps, the Americana horizons and the proximity to the heavens. But the score also excels in its achingly bittersweet softer cues, painted gently and with impeccable taste. All of the cues are linked by the tuneful, buoyant main title, somewhat in the style of True Grit, composed the same year.

FSM's premiere CD of The Gypsy Moths is entirely in stereo and features the complete underscore followed by the film's nightclub and march source cues. The liner notes provide insight on the production (including Bernstein's perspective) and explanation of the deleted and alternate cues.

Elmer Bernstein Scores on FSM
About the Composer

Elmer Bernstein (1922–2004) had a Hollywood career that lasted over a half a century; invented and reinvented himself as a composer across several genres (jazz, epics, westerns, comedies and adult dramas); and scored more than a few Hollywood classics—The Ten Commandments, The Magnificent Seven, To Kill a Mockingbird, The Great Escape and Airplane! to name but five. FSM has released a dozen of his scores and counting, but the most popular may be Heavy Metal (1981)—don't be fooled by the title, it's Elmer's "Star Wars." In addition to his prolific work as a composer, Bernstein was a tireless champion of film music as an art form, serving on the boards of several professional organizations and in the 1970s recording his own LP series of classic Hollywood scores, Elmer Bernstein's Film Music Collection, released by FSM as a 12-CD box set. IMDB

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Track List
Click on each musician name for more credits

Leader (Conductor):
Elmer Bernstein

Virginia Bartold, Henry Arthur Brown, Kurt Dieterle, Sam Freed, Jr., William J. Hector, Nathan Kaproff, Bernard Kundell, Alfred Lustgarten, Joy Lyle (Sharp), Lou Raderman, Sally Raderman (aka Sarah Kreindler), Linda Rose, Ambrose Russo, Walter S. Wiemeyer

Allan Harshman, Virginia Majewski, Robert Ostrowsky, Milton Thomas

Armand Kaproff, Raphael "Ray" Kramer, Frederick R. Seykora, Gloria Strassner

Raymond M. "Ray" Brown, Wilton L. Felder, Paul V. Keen, Peter A. Mercurio, William "Louie" Shelton, Ray Siegel

Burnett Atkinson, Harry Klee, Ted Nash, Sylvia Ruderman

Norman Benno, Gordon Schoneberg

William E. Green, Abe Most, Hugo Raimondi, Wilbur Schwartz, William A. Ulyate

Norman H. Herzberg, Jack Marsh

Peter Christlieb, William "Buddy" Collette, Charles Gentry, Justin Gordon, William E. Green, John Lowe, Jack Nimitz, Hugo Raimondi, Ethmer Roten

French Horn:
John W. "Jack" Cave, James A. Decker, Vincent N. DeRosa, Sinclair Lott, Arthur Maebe, Jr., Richard E. Perissi

Russell Brown, Robert Divall, Steve Huffsteter, Emanuel "Manny" Klein, Uan Rasey, George Werth, Graham Young

Milton Bernhart, Paul V. Keen, Lewis Melvin McCreary, Richard "Dick" Nash, George M. Roberts, Lloyd E. Ulyate

John T. "Tommy" Johnson, Ray Siegel

Pearl Kaufman (Goldman), Larry G. Muhoberac, Jr.

Robert F. Bain, James E. Burton, Alton R. "Al" Hendrickson, Bernie K. Lewis, William "Louie" Shelton, Thomas "Tommy" Tedesco, Gerald C. Whelan

Dorothy S. Remsen

Frank L. Carlson, Richard Cornell, Sheldon "Shelly" Manne, Roy Roten, Louis Singer

Orchestra Manager:
Gerald C. Whelan

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