My Dog Skip/Ross
June 5, 2012
William Ross, like Hugo Friedhofer did for Korngold, Eugene Zador for Rozsa, Conrad Pope for John Williams and Arthur Morton for Goldsmith is an extraordinary talent as an orchestrator and arranger that his output of original material has been curtailed over the years. He is kept busy and in demand in Hollywood by many of today’s top composers. My Dog Skip (1999), a family story of a boy and his dog, gave Ross the opportunity to showcase his ability with a score that will fill your speakers with melodies, warmth, and richness that has definitely become the exception to the rule in this day of wallpaper music. This music will bring a tear to your eye especially if you’ve seen the Jay Russell directed film starring Frankie Muniz, Diane Lane, and Kevin Bacon.
The Main Title begins with a soft delicate piano offering the heartfelt melody which you’ll hear throughout the score again as well as variations of the theme. The melody continues with flute, oboe, and lush strings backed by the ever present piano. A warm beginning to this soundtrack sets the mood to the score which is melancholy but also uplifting. This is the perfect score to listen to when you want something that is easy on the ears. Driving with Skip begins with an ear attention riff from the tubas which turns into a fun “An American in Paris” arrangement complete with the brass mimicking honking horns and sliding trombones. Subtle but tense classical chords and woodwinds with an eerie sounding harp in the background give way to danger horns which crescendo in Greenwood Cemetery. Sad Homecoming begins with a clarinet offering a theme of despair with help from flute and piano. There are disturbing piano chords which prelude funeral like chords from the brass. A flute offers a bit of an Irish jig which is continued by the strings and ends with some blues chords from the piano in Opening Day. The final and longest track Will Grows Up features moving strings around the piano a very nice summation to a moving score.
If this is one that you let slip through the cracks it is one that you’ll certainly enjoy if you’re looking for something that is truly easy listening.
Total Duration: 00:36:48