John Williams was one of the most prolific film score composers of the 20th century. For this release, he conducts the Boston Pops in 15 of his works, mostly film scores. Williams often gets criticized for plagiarizing himself, but even if he does so intentionally, I can't say that I blame him. If the main purpose of film scores is to support the image and dialogue without drawing attention to the music, how can Williams write such memorable melodies? All the familiar favorites are here along with a few hidden gems, specifically, The Cowboys Overture and marches from the movies Midway and 1941. I love hearing a composer conduct his own work - it's as close as you can get to a definitive interpretation.
Tracks: What a fantastic collection! Over 70 minutes of music.
- Olympic Fanfare and Theme
- The Cowboys Overture
- Excerpts from Close Encounters of the Third Kind
- March from Midway
- Flying Theme from E.T.
- Luke and Leia Theme from Return of the Jedi
- March from Superman
- Liberty Fanfare
- March from Raiders of the Lost Ark
- Yoda's Theme from The Empire Strikes Back
- March from "1941"
- Theme from Jaws
- Imperial March from The Empire Strikes Back
- Mission Theme (Theme for NBC News)
- Main Theme from Star Wars
Personal Memory Associated with this CD: This was one of the first releases I ever heard on a CD. I didn't own a CD player until January 1987 and the discs were very expensive at the time (compared to a cassette or LP). So CDs were still a rarity in my world, but I had heard this release at the home of John, a fraternity brother. Even though I knew how good it was, I inexplicably put off buying the CD until 2009.