The Oscar For Best Original Song, Goes To…

The Oscar For Best Original Score Goes To…

Oscar 2

The 2013 Academy Awards are all set to be broadcast this weekend. A time for movie goers to celebrate their favorite films and actors of the year. A time for millionaire actor$ and billionaire $tudios to finally be bestowed some actual credit for their hard work. ;)

Of all the yearly award shows the Oscars is my favorite. Much more than the Grammys, my own industries honors. Even more than the ESPYs…wait do we really need a sports award show? Isn’t that why they play the games to figure out who’s the best?

Of course my favorite awards of the night are for my favorite part of most movies…the music! Best original score and best original song.

Nominees For Best Original Song:

Chasing Ice“Before My Time,”  J. Ralph 

Surprise surprise, Scarlett Johansson can sing and sounds great. Joshua Bell’s melodic violin lines are incredibly expressive and make the song for me. Every time I hear this song I like it more!

Ted- “Everybody Needs a Best Friend,” Walter Murphy; Seth MacFarlane

Cause, everyone knew Ted was Oscar worthy from the start! ;0 Norah Jones sounds great. The song is just a typical showtuney jazz thing. They should enjoy the nomination!

Life of Pi- “Pi’s Lullaby,” Mychael Danna; Bombay Jayashri

The biggest drawback against the original score from, “Life of Pi,” in my opinion is the minimalist lack of direction. That same dreamy quality is what makes this song so successful. In song form the lushness of the orchestration shines. I love this song!

Skyfall- “Skyfall,” Adele Adkins; Paul Epworth 

Adele at her best! Great sultry voice blends great with the ‘spy’ genre accompaniment. I like her voice, but, nice to hear her mix it up a little on this piece.

Les Miserables- “Suddenly,” Claude-Michel Schönberg; Herbert Kretzmer; Alain Boublil

Do you like this song? Do you hate this song? It is not really my cup of tea. It’s nice. Hugh Jackman sounds good. Will it win?

Which song will win the Oscar? My favorites are, “Pi’s Lullaby,” and, “Before my Time,” for their well crafted artistic nature. I like, Adele’s “Skyfall,” as a really effective 007 song, but….I dont see how any song is going to beat, “Suddenly.” Like it or not I don’t see how Les Miserables can not win the Oscar for best song.

Begrudgingly I have to say…

The Oscar for Best Original Song, Goes To…Les Miserables, “Suddenly.”

The Oscar for Best Original Score, Goes To…

The Oscar For Best Original Song, Goes To…

The 2013 Academy Awards are all set to be broadcast this weekend. A time for movie goers Oscarto celebrate their favorite films and actors of the year. A time for millionaire actor$ and billionaire $tudios to finally be bestowed some actual credit for their hard work. 😉

Of all the yearly award shows the Oscars is my favorite. Much more than the Grammys, my own industries honors. Even more than the ESPYs…wait do we really need a sports award show? Isn’t that why they play the games to figure out who’s the best?

Of course my favorite awards of the night are for my favorite part of most movies…the music! Best original score and best original song.

Nominees for Best Original Score:

While all are very well composed scores with interesting soundscapes, there were none that were truly unique or mind-blowing, over the top. That said…

Anna KareninaDario Marianelli

Perhaps the most artistic of all the nominees. Reminiscent of the Russian Romantic composers of the 19th and 20th centuries.

ArgoAlexandre Desplat

A nice combination of modern technology and middle-east flavors. In my opinion the synth driven background is not as difficult in compositional nature as Lincoln and Anna Karenina.

Life of PiMychael Danna

Danna sets a very nice mood with the peaceful score in Life of Pi. The use of eastern instruments and ideals lends perfectly to the movie. In my opinion the score is a bit too minimalist and might suffer from its demure sonic atmosphere.

Lincoln–  John Williams

I am really impressed with this one. When I first heard Williams was penning the music for Lincoln I kind of rolled my eyes. ‘Lets use the biggest name in the film scoring business.’ He tends to be bombastic and his moves often have a similar style. However, I really like what he did for Lincoln. Williams did a great job composing Americana music, as well as, setting traditional songs of the day. Maybe not some of his most memorable sounds, but, some of his truly best artistically and structurally!

SkyfallThomas Newman

This is a cool fun score. Newman did a great job interpreting the James Bond theme we all love with some techno beats and backgrounds. I think this nomination will suffer from being a 007 film and similar to Argo I don’t think this piece had the same compositional chops as Lincoln and Anna Karenina.

So you can probably already tell where I am going with this pick. In my opinion it is definitely between Lincoln and Anna Karenina. My personal vote would be for Lincoln. I am torn on who I think the Academy has picked. The slightly superior Lincoln or the more artistic Anna Karenina.

Gotta go with my gut…

The Oscar for Best Original Score, Goes To…John Williams for Lincoln!!

We Lost an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony Award Winner Today – RIP Marvin Hamlisch

That’s right, Marvin Hamlisch was one of only eleven to ever win all four prestigious awards not to mention he also won multiple Golden Globes, as well.

Unfortunately, the composer passed away today at age 68.

Locally, Hamlisch’s name was synonymous with the San Diego Symphony’s Summer Pops, as he was the principal conductor.

Another huge musical loss in 2012, RIP Marvin Hamlisch!

Best Original Score 2014

Are you still scrambling to get your 2014 Oscar picks in and win that pot of gold or at least bragging rights among your friends?

I am here to offer some help…at least in the music department.

Sadly, I have to say my favorite was not even nominated…   Mark Orton for Nebraska his music made the movie. I love the sounds of Americana. Coupled with the cinematography Orton hit the nail on the head!! The harmonies and orchestration had more depth than any of the nominees in my humble opinion.

Following is my breakdown of the nominees for Best Original Score…

The Book Thief, John Williams

I thought John Williams deserved the Oscar last year for, “Lincoln.” Perhaps the Academy is looking away from the maestro just to get some new blood…well that theory doesn’t hold weight regarding perennial winner Meryl Streep. For this film Williams went back to more of the Romantic Period style we expect although a bit more pastoral than Wagnerian.

Gravity, Steven Price

Should have been John Williams penned! Williams and outer space = Oscar!

Her, William Butler, Owen Pallett

The soundscape is kind of cool and fits the quirkiness of the film. Although minimalist and slightly boring. Nice sounds though!

Philomena, Alexandre Desplat

Compositionally strong although a bit repetitive. We’ll see how the Academy reacts to the film in general, could take home the gold!

Saving Mr. Banks, Thomas Newman

Another minimalist, new-agey piano score. I think it will suffer from comparison’s to the mega hits of the Sherman’s legendary Mary Poppins songs.

My pick;         Philomena, Alexandre Desplat

Click for past Oscar Picks and 2014 Best Song

Best Song 2014

Are you still scrambling to get your 2014 Oscar picks in and win that pot of gold or at least bragging rights among your friends?

I am here to offer some help…at least in the music department.

Following is my breakdown of the nominees for Best Song…

Happy-Pharrell Williams, Despicable Me 2

Pharrell Williams is as hot as it gets since the Grammys. Could strike Oscar Gold while the fire is hot. “Happy,” is a cool funky groove song.

Let it Go-Demi Lovato, Frozen

Lovato may sell to the younger female crowd which would hurt her chances for an Oscar. Although “Frozen,” was created for the same demographic and this song drives the mega popular film home with said audience.  A good song and worthy of Oscar buzz.

Ordinary Love-U2, Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom

A match made in heaven. An aging supergroup with world-wide mass audience appeal. A movie with a cause and one that U2 has held dear since the 80’s. Won the Golden Globe.

The Moon Song-Karen O., Her

The movie is a bit campy and so is the song. In my opinion the least deserving of the four nominees.

You could make a good case for “Happy,” and “Let it Go,” but I don’t see them beating the mighty U2 and Mandela.

My pick;         Ordinary Love-U2, Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom

Click for past Oscar Picks and 2014 Original Score

RIP Jack Klugman, The Odd Couple

A sad note this Christmas, on the 24th actor Jack Klugman passed away at age 90. Some may remember him as Quincy, M.E. but, to me he will always be Oscar Madison, the slob from the Odd Couple.

I loved this show as a kid, good clean fun. However, I have to say it was the theme music that I could not wait for each episode. Remember back in the day all TV shows had a theme song, not just a 10 second clip like shows get today. Each show was identified by its theme. Before I knew any rock bands, my love for music as a kid was fueled by what my parents listened to and TV…so the connection was there. Some other favorite theme songs were, Happy Days, Barney Miller, Sanford & Son…the list goes on…..

RIP Mr. Klugman thanks for being a part of my early music influences!