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Diamond Head/Gone With the Wave (1963/1964)
Music by Lalo Schifrin, John Williams
Diamond Head/Gone With the Wave Diamond Head/Gone With the Wave Diamond Head/Gone With the Wave
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Price: $16.95
Limited #: N/A
View CD Page at SAE Store
Line: Silver Age
CD Release: July 2006
Catalog #: Vol. 9, No. 9
# of Discs: 1

Diamond Head/Gone With the Wave is a Colpix Records "two-fer" of soundtrack albums from the early careers of John Williams and Lalo Schifrin, respectively.

Diamond Head (1963) was a big-budget drama starring Charlton Heston as Richard "King" Howland, a wealthy Hawaiian plantation owner involved in messy family affairs. The film tackled issues of racism, abortion and even incest, becoming a moderate commercial success.

Scoring Diamond Head was a young pianist, jazz arranger and television composer just beginning his feature film career: "Johnny" Williams, now known worldwide as John. Diamond Head was one of his few dramas of the 1960s (he otherwise tended to score comedies) and his earliest feature film soundtrack album released.

Like many LPs of the era, the Diamond Head album was a re-recording featuring major score cues, source music, and cover versions of the main title theme (composed by bandleader Hugo Winterhalter, and sung in a vocal version on the record by costar James Darren). Williams adapted Winterhalter's melody for several cues in the underscore, otherwise writing all-new material for supporting characters and situations. Several source cues are more akin to Williams's television work of the time, while dramatic selections anticipate his symphonic glory of years ahead.

Gone With the Wave (1964) was an obscure surf movie directed by Phil Wilson, son of Revue (later Universal) music director Stanley Wilson. The elder Wilson was a beloved mentor for many prominent composers, including John Williams and Lalo Schifrin. Schifrin gladly accepted Stanley Wilson's invitiation to score son Phil's surf picture, and recorded 31 minutes of original compositions with a top-flight West Coast jazz band.

While the film itself was barely distributed, the soundtrack album on Colpix Records received rave reviews, eventually becoming a collector's item for both the jazz and surfing crowds. The album makes its CD debut here, a vintage array of Schifrin grooves from the glorious mid-1960s.

Due to missing masters in the Colpix tape library, Diamond Head has been mastered from a stereo copy of the LP. Gone With the Wave was mastered from a stereo 1/4" master tape; however (full disclosure), it may have itself been made from an LP in the late 1960s. Fortunately, Colpix Records was legendary for the superb quality of its vinyl pressings, and the sound quality of this CD is first-rate.

Liner notes are by Jeff Bond and Jeff Eldridge for Diamond Head; and Jon Burlingame for Gone With the Wave, featuring new interview material with Lalo Schifrin and Phil Wilson.

Lalo Schifrin Scores on FSM
About the Composer

Lalo Schifrin (b. 1932) is an Argentinean-born composer, conductor, arranger and pianist who has made a major impact on film, TV, the concert hall and jazz stage. He parlayed an early career as a pianist and arranger for Dizzy Gillespie into a run as one of the hottest film and TV composers of the 1960s and '70s, with projects such as Mission: Impossible, Bullitt, Dirty Harry, Cool Hand Luke, Enter the Dragon and more. His more recent films include the popular Rush Hour series. He is beloved for his Latin jazz but is also an accomplished classical composer and conductor with ongoing recording, composing and performing projects.IMDB

John Williams Scores on FSM
About the Composer

John Williams (b. 1932) is not only the composer of most of the biggest blockbusters of all time—including Star Wars, E.T., Jaws, the Indiana Jones films, Harry Potter, Jurassic Park and many more, many of them directed by Steven Spielberg—but he has transcended film music to become the world's most famous living composer, and an American institution. His popular symphonic scores are so iconic that they often overshadow the fact that he has been equally proficient at sophisticated, adult fare (Schindler's List, Images) and had a successful career in composing (for television and often comedy features), arranging and performing well before he even met Steven Spielberg. FSM, like most labels, will release everything it can of Williams's music, and has concentrated (for reasons of availability) on his early years as "Johnny" Williams when he was doing sterling work on relatively little-known television and films—always with an amazing attention to melody and detail. In fact, his early works are fascinating for the ways in which they foreshadow his later, world-renowned efforts. IMDB

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