Sunday, October 22, 2006

Let's Celebrate! - My Favorite Film Score of All Time - Kings Row (1941) (Erich Wolfgang Korngold)

To celebrate my 100th post (only by my arbitrary numbering system, so it's probably more than that actually) and to celebrate the blog closing in on 40,000 visits (!), I thought I'd post what is arguably my favorite score of all time. I kind of hate to call it that because it's a little like naming your favorite movie or favorite food. That's literally comparing apples and oranges. And there are way too many choices, but if I was absolutely forced to, I'd have to say that Kings Row is my favorite film score of all time and Erich Wolfgang Korngold is my favorite film composer.

If you love film scoring, you're probably familiar with Korngold, but if you're not, he composes in the grand symphonic style of the Golden Age. When people mention Star Wars in terms of scoring, they often mention it as a revival of the style defined by Korngold.

Kings Row is also one out of my two favorite Ronald Reagan movies (that and Desperate Journey). Not that anybody but me would care, but I just thought I'd throw that in. Actually, now that I think about it, I really wished he had stayed an actor (for so many reasons). I think it was also his favorite movie; in fact, if I remember right, he named his autobiography with a line from this film (though it would probably be giving away a plot point if I mentioned what it was). It's tidbits like that which probably make you really glad you read this blog.....or not.

Speaking of which, I wanted to sincerely thank all the people who have visited this blog since it started. I wanted to celebrate the 10,000 mark, way back when, but it happened when I was taking that unplanned break and I couldn't think of anything to post to commemorate it. Then I thought I'd do something for 20,000, but it slipped by unnoticed and I still couldn't think of anything. I actually would've posted Kings Row a long time ago, but I knew it was one of those CD's I had in storage, so I ruled it out. Then, a while ago, I was rummaging around in my collection and I realized I had digitized a copy of this and stuck it on an archive CD! So, I thought I'd post it as something special for the 30,000 mark, but that came and went so quickly, I didn't get the chance. But this time around, when it was at 37,000 or so and it coincided with the approaching 100th post, I thought I should do it. So, by the time I post this, it should be around 40,000 visits.

I still can't believe it! That's pretty amazing for a so-so blog. I never envisioned this blog getting to that point so quickly (if at all). Especially, when the first month and half or so that this blog was up, hardly anybody visited. My main concern back then was that I have just enough visitors so that the links wouldn't go dead. And I'm actually still basically satisfied by getting enough downloads to make sure they still stay active. Anything beyond, say, 20 or 30 downloads and I'm reasonably satisfied (though, of course, I'm happier when it's a little higher than that), so I still find 40,000 visits an amazing number. Of course, this could just be 10 people who visited 4,000 times apiece, but it's still very gratifying.

Considering the kind of stuff I post (and the way the blog is presented), I still find it hard to believe people visit that often. I think all the stuff I post is great, but when I think about it objectively, I know there aren't that many people interested in most of it, so for the people who are, I wanted to thank each and every one of you for making this such an enjoyable experience. Well, at least I enjoy it.....I can't really speak for anyone else.

Well, I like to think of the blog as a kind of Crackerjack box. When people stop by, they won't know what they'll get or if they'll even like it, but hopefully every once in a while, it'll be something they enjoy.

And so, I hope Kings Row is something a few of you will enjoy. I know I do. It's such a powerful score, very lyrical, and fantastic music. It's a symphonic suite consisting of two long tracks performed by The National Philharmonic Orch. cond. by Charles Gerhardt. It's hard for me to imagine anyone not liking it, but if you don't like the John Williams style or large orchestral music, then I could see someone passing on it. But if for no other reason than to celebrate, I hope people who might otherwise pass, give it a try! Just to satisfy their curiosity as to what my favorite film score of all time would sound like. And for those of you who would download it anyway, I know you'll love it.

And again, thanks for all the support, encouragement, and pleasure your love and appreciation for music has provided over the course of this blog. I've certainly received more than I've given out and so I appreciate everyone who has visited and hopefully will continue to visit. There's so much music I want to post that I haven't gotten around to yet, and I hope that you'll occasionally find something in there to enjoy! Well, happy 100th post and happy 40,000!

Track List:

01 - Main Title / The Children (Parris and Cassie) / Parris and Grandmother / Cassie's Party / Icehouse / Operation / Cassie's Farewell / Parris Goes To Dr.Tower / Winter / Grandmother's Last Will / Seduction / All Is Quiet / Grandmother Dies / Sunset / Parris Leaves Kings Row / Flirtation

02 - Vienna and Happy New Year 1900 / Randy and Drake / Financial Ruin / Accident and Amputation / Drake Awakens / Vienna - Cable - Randy and Drake / Letters Across The Ocean / Parris Comes Back / Kings Row / Elise / Parris's Decision / Finale

pw = youdont

Kings Row (
Kings Row (Megaupload)

around 69 MB

Great soundtrack! I've always wanted to hear this one. Are you planning on uploading any more Korngold any time soon? :) Gracias!
Hi there,

congratulations !!!

I've downloaded nearly everything from your page, and together with "Cosmoblog" and "7 Black Notes" you're page is by far the best film music site on the site (now that "Soundtrack Lover" is unfortunately gone).

I appreciate very much your uploads of old LPs that have never seen CD light and was glad to see that you uploaded "The Stunt Man" again. I also noticed that one track was missing in the other download, and as this tango version of the theme is a real favorite of mine I'm very glad to get it through you. I think this is such a great score because Jack Hayes orchestrated it. Some other examples: Schifrin's "Nunzio", Hamlisch's "The Swimmer" and a lot by Elmer Bernstein. For me this guy was the king of orchestrators.

Another fantastic find was the compilation of unreleased film music (the one with Schifrin's "Concorde"), many thanks for it.

And perhaps -as you have so many requests- I may humbly ask for things I'm searching: to put it very simple, everything unreleased by Lalo Schifrin (like the "St. Ives" suite which was offered on another page some weeks ago). Perhaps you have some more main titles ? For example, fantastic would be "Harry in Your Pocket", since 20 years a favorite of mine.

I also like your long introductions to your downloads a lot and have read (at least I think) everything so far.

Concerning the debate whether Rapidshare or something else I'm very happy that you are continuing woorking with Rapidshare. For a guy like me who downloads a lot using "Rapidget" is essential.

Again, many thanks for all the great stuff.

If you (or any other Schifrin fan) like to answer me personally, here's my address:

Best greetings from Germany

You are a blessing to all!

I read you like a book, Michner.;))
You are one funny guy!

I love Korngold with cold milk and a sliced banana!;)

Your friend,
I've downloaded a few things from you and I wanted to say "Thanks".

I'm checking this out on your recomendation.

Thanks again.
this music reminds me why i got hooked to OSTs in the first place and then it saddens me to know that composers dont write stuff like these anymore
for the young collectors like me who have heard names like Korngold only in other reviews, its grt to finally hear his grt music
i hope we get more of such score

I was wondering if you are able to post the soundtrack to the 1997 Spanish film "Abre los ojos"...Cameron Crowe did a remake of this movie called Vanilla Sky, the original had a lot of great music, as did Crowe's version...
Thanks so much for the opportunity to hear Korngold. This gorgeous music suggests to me that John Williams lifted some of it for his Superman score.

And your blog is by no means "so-so" - don't deprecate yourself - just continue for as long as you can - I hope that will be for a long time.

Regards - Mel.
Hi Ste!

Thanks! I'm glad you could hear it. I'm not sure how much of my Korngold is in storage, but I'll post some more if I have it here. :))


Hi Jordan!

That really means a lot to me. I couldn't really imagine somebody putting me in the same category as XYZ Cosmoblog or 7 Black Notes (especially with the amount of great stuff they put out), but I really appreciate it!

And you may want to check in the soundtrack links post if you're hankering for some Soundtrack(s) Lover. :))

I think the orchestration on The Stunt Man is fantastic too. And I love the tango version of the theme too! It's been a while since I listened to Nunzio. I was thinking of posting that eventually, but so far haven't gotten around to it. Boy, it's gotten me to think of all the great music I still want to post.

Thanks for the comments about the Soundtrack Gamut, A-Z compilation too! I think you may be the first one to say anything about that one, so I really appreciate that too! :)) (Though it wasn't actually all unreleased material, so much as just stuff I felt like compiling).

And I was all set to post 'Harry In Your Pocket' a long time ago, but there was something wrong with my copy. I forget exactly what; either there was something wrong with a couple of the tracks or it was missing tracks, but I think the main title was fine, so I could post that if you want.

And thanks for saying that about my long introductions! You may be one of only a couple of people who've ever said that! (Everybody else probably hates them, but are too polite to say it on my own blog!)

And I use Rapidget too so I think that's one reason I keep using Rapidshare. There are a lot of things I like about RS, but they keep making it harder every day. This 10 day policy makes it hard to get some files before they go dead. I think they just want people to get Premium accounts!

Again, thanks for all the nice things you said. It's one of the things that make the time and effort to blog worthwhile and so I very much appreciate you taking the time and effort to say something back! It really means a lot. Much thanks!! :)))

Hi Larry!

As always, ditto! (Wait, that wasn't funny enough. But it was a heartfelt sentiment. No, wait, that wasn't heartfelt either. Well, you know what I mean!)

If you were the only one reading this blog, it would all be worth it! (And stick around, it may come to that eventually!)

Your buddy,

nowl1, norml, nwlo1, norml1, nowml, and nomwl1!


Hi Lamanski!

Thanks so much for your thanks! I hope you won't be sorry you downloaded it. (But you can always delete it later anyway)
It means a lot that you're willing to give it a try. Thanks again!


Hi Mythodean!

I'm so glad you could get to hear Korngold! I kind of wish composers would write this way every once in a while too (though I guess they don't make movies where this music would fit, but I'd still love it if they did!).

And by the way, everybody should check out Mythodean's new blog (link in the link list under Legends of Mythodean & soundtrack blog list post).


Hi Ik!

I'll pass your request along on the request post. I hope somebody out there has it! :))


Hi Mel!

Sometimes when I listen to Williams, it does remind me of Korngold passages, but I figure Williams is good enough that he doesn't need to steal (though you probably can't help what your unconscious does....something that James Horner probably tells himself every day! :)))

And thanks so much for what you said about the blog! Sometimes when you see other people's blogs, you can't help but deprecate yourself. I frankly wish I could maintain the blog more and sometimes when I look at the stuff I post, I think I should probably post something that's a little more popular, but it really doesn't occur to me at the time that I'm picking out stuff to post.

Well, I do what I can do, but you know you're treading water when you can't even download other people's links on your own blog fast enough before they go dead! It's kind of emblematic of this blog, I suppose. Oh, well. What can I do?

Well, I hope to keep the blog going as long as I can. I certainly have more than enough music that I can post, but do I have the energy? If I was really on the ball, it would probably rise above being so-so, but you can only do so much when you have limited online time, I guess (although it probably wouldn't be that much better anyway, now that I think about it. :)))

But now that I think about it, it seems kind of ungracious to go on deprecating the blog after you asked me not to, so I'll stop. I'll just shut up and say thanks again for all the nice things you said!

Oh, in case I didn't say it before, thanks for making Lili available! I really appreciate it.


You guys are great!!!! (and by 'you guys' I mean the readers of this blog and not some random group of people) :)))
Hi nomwl1,

many thanks for your long answer to my comment.

I even took your blog as an example when I created yesterday my own one:
The name of the blog should be in the same ironical vein as yours.

I would put in links to my favorite sites, however, I always get an error message when I click on "Edit me" in the link section to the right. Probably need some time to figure it out.

Rapidshare seems to have problems right now, they just state to me "Our hard disks are full". Does that mean that at the moment no uploads are possible ? Just when I wanted to get started.

As as third, at the moment I can't reach the forum. All bad things seem to come three times at once.

Concerning "Harry in Your Pocket", the main title would be fantastic. Mine is buried since years on an old tape in the cellar (as was "Concorde").

By the way, as I was hearing "The Stunt Man" again, I came to the oppinion thar this main theme is a waltz (or whatever). Actually I have no idea what I'm talking about.

Please reconsider "Nunzio", as this score has perhaps the BEST Schifrin track ever: it's called "Superspeed" on side 2. I also like the end title of "Caveman" very very much.

Any track of "Telefone" available ? I know it has a lot of sound effects even under the main title but it's a great score.

Greetings from Germany and keep on the fine work ! I hope my blog can be at least partly as good as yours is.

Thank You So Much! This one I have sought after for such a long time! You have made my day! This score is such an incredible listen. Thank You, once again!
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
I discovered how to do links on my blog and of course directly made a link to your page - have a look:
What an absolutely amazing score.

Is it me or did I detect shades of star wars in the first track?

Thank you for a great blog and don't ever do away with your great intro's to what you have posted.

All the best - hooch
Sorry, I can't stand seeing this sit at 13 comments any longer;)

Well, I'm here now so I'll tell you a true story.
I had been working at the Peninsula Hotel in Bev Hills stocking mini-bars in guest rooms.
One day the guest list showed that John Barry would be arriving in the presidential suite on the 3rd floor.

Their is a baby grand in the living room so I got to plink out the Goldfinger theme (only one I know) and sure enough he came walking into the room!

His luggage hadn't arrived so I showed him around the room finally admitting that I was playing it rather poorly.

He says, "Don't worry, I'm certain someone has done worse with it."

Couldn't get rid of that silly grin I had for the rest of the day.

Hope you enjoyed my story, but if you didn't, I still got rid of the 13th post for you.;)
Hi again, Omega!

I checked out your site and really enjoyed it (I think you've posted more stuff in 2 days than I have in the last month!). I put the links up for it. I found what you've been writing and the stuff you've posted really interesting!

And I think as far as Rapidshare goes, they seem okay for uploading on Premium accounts, but maybe free uploading is full. I get the feeling they want people to use where I guess they've got new hard disk space, but it's just a guess.

And as far as I know, the forum is okay and still up (but there have been some link deletions lately).

And I'll have to use the 'Harry In Your Pocket' main title in a compilation some day (along with Telefon)!

Oh, and I thought it was a waltz too, but I also said tango for some reason. I think my brain is fried from blogging. :))

Thanks again for all the kind words you said about the blog (and to everybody else, go over to Omega's new won't be sorry!). :))


Hi Honored General!

I'm so glad I could share it! You've made my day by saying that!! :))


Hi Hooch!

Oh, thanks so much for saying that about the long intros (you're now maybe one of three people who think so!). And it does seem like you can hear a little bit of Star Wars in there, now that you mention it.

Thanks, again! :))


Hi Isbum!

You came through again! Saved me from being incredibly unlucky!

And I loved the John Barry story. It puts a grin on my face and I wasn't even there! It's great enough to meet him, but to actually play one of his own compositions in front of him is incredible! You must've been on cloud nine!! :))
Thanks for the nice comment on my blog !!!

I'm just downloading all the fantastic stuff you have just uploaded/linked.

"The Gauntlet" etc. Marvellous !!!
I am in search of a qoute from that moive and I fear your my last hope.
Okay before Drake gets in the accedient, Randy goes and has tea with him,
What does she say to him about them just getting fond of each other or something, if you could help me figure out her speech there I would be ever so thankful?
- just a passer by
Thanks Omega!

And your blog deserves it too!!


And passer-by, I put your question up at the Requests post. I hope somebody can answer it. I couldn't remember. :(
Thanks very much for a great upload!
Thanks! Doesn't have the chorus at the end, alas!
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