Lonely Are The Brave/Goldsmith

August 9, 2009

Lonely_are_brave_MO06091094One could argue 1962 was the pinnacle of picture making for Hollywood with the likes of Miracle Worker, Lawrence of Arabia, To Kill A Mockingbird, The Days of Wine and Roses, Birdman of Alcatraz, Music Man, Mutiny on the Bounty, and Sweet Bird of Youth. Released in another year could have resulted in an Oscar or two for Lonely are the Brave including the outstanding score of a young Jerry Goldsmith. Screenplay by award winning blacklisted Dalton Trumbo, itself a story, the film starred Kirk Douglas, Gena Rowlands, and Walter Matthau in a modern setting western about an out of place cowboy. This was not your typical cowboy story and Douglas whose production company produced wanted it released to the art houses, which Universal refused to listen to. Yes it had a western flavor to it but the story went a whole lot deeper. With the above list of 1962 films one can see why it quickly came and left theaters, much to the disappointment of Kirk who felt it was his favorite movie, quite a statement considering the list of films he starred in.

Recommended for the assignment by Alfred Newman, Jerry turned in a score that ranks with the best of the best in the western genre. The main theme is quietly introduced to us 20 seconds into the first track by a guitar with soft harmonizing strings, extremely subtle. Then that theme again is heard first from the flutes and then the lonesome trumpet with some of that Goldsmith sound from the harmony of the brass, and the pizzicato from the string section. One can hear in track No. 3 “3M81” influences of Jerome Moross and Aaron Copland both well known in their writing of Americana music as well as a brief return to that wonderful theme. “Burns Returns” is more of that lovely theme Americana orchestrated. Again one can hear what sort of influence Aaron Copland had on a young Jerry Goldsmith and yet his sound was already being formed. “Bar Room Brawl” is a tense action underscore well orchestrated with guitar, pizzicato strings, blaring horns, and percussion. It ends with a short Mexican style marimba. “World’s Apart” is a longer version (5:28) of the main theme in a poignant lullaby style cue complete with the theme from harmonica, guitar, and a small string section. “On the Run,” “Sudden Intrusion,” “Wounded,” and “Closing In” is tension underscore cues mixed in with the main theme. “Catastrophe” begins with dissonant brass and then becomes a dirge between the brass and the lower strings. The lower register takes the spotlight by playing the theme in a lower key. The “End title” after a short build-up gives us the lonely trumpet and the main theme to conclude the CD.

Don’t let the fact that the recording is mono deter you from a purchase as it is a first class re-master all the way with some added stereo reverb to make it even better. I have absolutely no complaint with the recording at all.

While Goldsmith fans/collectors have already purchased this CD (perhaps 2) the average collector should also not hesitate and purchase this outstanding release before it sells out. It is a limited edition of 3000 copies. This western release ranks with “Tombstone,” “The Magnificent Seven,” and “The Big Country.” Highly recommended.

Main titles Rating is *****

CD# is Varese Sarabande VCL 0609 1094.2

Track listing

1. Lone Cowboy (00:53)


2. Main Title (02:55)


3. 3M81 (02:27)


4. Burns Returns (02:31)


5. 3M52 (01:19)


6. 3M53 (02:40)


7. Going to Town (00:30)


8. Barroom Brawl (03:41)


9. That Dog (00:41)


10. No Surprise / Escape (06:33)


11. Worlds Apart (05:28)


12. 3M96 (01:47)


13. On the Run (01:02)


14. 3M40 (01:49)


15. Resting Up (00:58)


16. Sudden Intrusion (02:03)


17. Closing In (02:56)


18. Anxious Moment (01:30)


19. Surprised Sadist (02:51)


20. Minus Whisky / Hard-Gained Ground (05:59)


21. Run For It (03:08)


22. Wounded (02:58)


23. Catastrophe (03:39)


24. End Title (01:17)


Total Duration: 01:01:35


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