Prego Commercial

This beautiful violin theme was actually written and produced specifically for a  Prego spaghetti commercial in 2003.


The Lonely Man Theme

Although I admired Bill Bixby, and I admit to a visceral enjoyment whenever he “hulked out” in the show, the TV show itself was not necessarily one of my favorites.  But Joe Harnell’s haunting piano theme, The Lonely Man, definitely left a lifetime impression.

Nice to be Around

Belgian born, Jean-Baptiste “Toots” Thielemans began his career in the late 1940’s playing with the Benny Goodman band when Goodman toured Europe.  His talent was quite unique – a jazz harmonica player.  Toots is known for playing on a number of movie themes, perhaps the best known of which is the theme to the 1971 Academy award nominated film – Midnight Cowboy, starring Dustin Hoffman and Jon Voight.  However, to the general public, he may be best known (at least for his music, if not his name) for the theme song to Sesame Street.

I fell in love with his music after first hearing the theme, Nice to Be Around, from the little movie – Cinderella Liberty – which came out in 1973.  Nice to be Around was nominated for the Academy award for Best Original Song that year but, to my dismay, it lost out to Barbra Streisand’s Evergreen.

I was fortunate enough to hear Toots play in person a number of times over the years. He died in August of 2016 at the age of 94.

The Circle of Life – finale from The Lion King

This video is from the finale of the company’s performance in Australia.  Deborah and I first saw the Lion King in 2004 on the campus of Michigan State University in Lansing. We also saw it again in Milwaukee but the performance in Michigan remains our favorite.  We sat in the very first row off to one side, about at floor level, so we had a very unique visual and audio perspective.  We had also listened to the Broadway soundtrack while driving over from Milwaukee to Lansing so, by the time we saw the play, we were quite familiar with all of the music.

Ending Theme – The American President

Given my general political leanings, it should not come as a shock that I consider Michael Douglas’s portrayal of President Andrew Shepherd to be my favorite movie President.  I also liked Kevin’s Kline’s President in Dave, and Henry Fonda’s President in Fail Safe.

But in addition to my affection for this movie, the movie soundtrack, and it’s ending them in particular, are reasons the movie has had such a lasting effect on me.