Bond. James Bond.
Most of the theme songs are indelibly etched into your memory and evoke as much emotion as the film that it’s branded to. More than a few have even reached Billboard status. For instance ‘Live And Let Die’ by McCartney, ‘Nobody Does It Better’ by Carly Simon, ‘For Your Eyes Only’ by Sheena Easton (#1) and ‘Tomorrow Never Dies’ by Sheryl Crowe.
So, there’s something special about a new Bond film in the theater when you watch the over-the-top, sure to blow you away opening scene for the first time with popcorn and beverage in hand, audience bathed in screen glow. There’s something grin producing as that opening scene climaxes spectacularly and then you listen to the new Bond Theme being birthed.
James Bond Theme
Composed by Monty Norman in 1963 for the Bond film, “Dr. No”., this is the quintessential Bond theme and the one most recognized. Parts and shards of this are used in most of the films when an added emphasis is needed in the action.
According to Wikipedia, “The main theme for Dr. No is the "James Bond Theme," although the opening credits also include an untitled bongo interlude, and concludes with a vocal Calypso-flavored rendition of "Three Blind Mice" titled "Kingston Calypso" that sets the scene and is repeated throughout the film. Because of this, Dr. No is the only film to have two opening themes.”
Listen to that jangly, vibrato-laced guitar! Dig those vibes and the big band inspired drumming. It doesn’t get better than this my Ian Fleming freaks!
Tom Jones. Say no more. The man could sing a phone book and get a standing-O. Starring the man himself, Sean Connery, IMDB describes the plot as “When SPECTRE steals two nuclear bombs for a massive extortion scheme, agent 007 is sent in to find them before they can be used.” Oh, yea. I’m there. Babe du jour is Claudine Augur. Tom helps 007 out in his own small way. From, of course, Thunderball.
Any woman he wants, he'll get.
He will break any heart without regret.
His days of asking are all gone.
His fight goes on and on and on.
But he thinks that the fight is worth it all.
So he strikes like Thunderball.
Big side note: none other than Johnny Cash also recorded a version of Thunderball, but the powers that be determined that they wanted Tom’s version on the film. Johnny’s version can be found on a few of his Greatest Hits offerings.
Bold, sassy and raw. Shirley kicks as much butt with her voice as James does with his knuckles. Shirley’s themes are among the most memorable of all the themes (again, as opposed to, well ... anyone remember Rita Coolidge and ‘All Time High’?), and with good reason. She also recorded Diamonds Are Forever, Moonraker and "Mr. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang" for Thunderball (Dionne Warwick received the nod for that track in the film). Spectacular vocals, tight arrangements and brimming with dense emotion. From, you guessed, Goldfinger.
Golden words he will pour in your ear
But his lies can't disguise what you fear
For a golden girl knows when he's kissed her
It's the kiss of death from Mister Goldfinger.
Pretty girl beware of this heart of gold
This heart is cold.
He loves only gold
John Barry: James Bond Theme (13)
Tom Jones: Thunderball (11)
Shirley Bassey: Goldfinger (14)
From: Best of Bond James Bond