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Encyclopedia > Theme music

The theme music of a radio or television program is a piece that is written specifically for that show and usually played during the title sequence and/or end credits. If it is accompanied by lyrics, most often associated with the show, it is a theme song. This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Musical composition is: an original piece of music the structure of a musical piece the process of creating a new piece of music // A musical composition A piece of music exists in the form of a written composition in musical notation or as a single acoustic event (a live performance... This example of a title sequence, from long-running serial drama Another World, was seen from 1966 to 1981, making it one of the longest-running continuous title sequences on television. ...



The purpose of the music is to establish a mood for the show and to provide an audible cue that a particular show is beginning, which was especially useful in the early days of radio (See also interval signal). In some cases, including The Brady Bunch, Gilligan's Island, and The Beverly Hillbillies the lyrics of the theme song provide some necessary exposition for people unfamilar with the show. An interval signal is a characteristic sound or musical phrase used in international broadcasting and by some domestic broadcasters. ... The Brady Bunch is an American television situation comedy, based around a large blended family. ... The cast of Gilligans Island. ... The Beverly Hillbillies was a TV sitcom about a hillbilly family living in Southern California in the 1960s. ...

In addition, some theme music uses orchestra scores or original music set mood for the show. One of the most notable of these is the Batman: The Animated Series theme song, which was drawn from the theme for the 1989 Batman film created by Danny Elfman. Others uses remixes or covers of older songs, such as the theme song of Spider-Man: The Animated Series (1994-1998), which featured a reworked cover of the theme song from the classic Spider-Man cartoon from the 1960s. The song was created and performed by Aerosmith lead guitarist Joe Perry. The animated Batman shoots his grappling gun from a rooftop in a scene from the episode, On Leather Wings. ... Batman is a 1989 superhero film based on the Batman character created by Bob Kane and Bill Finger. ... Danny Elfman Daniel Robert Elfman (born May 29, 1953 in Los Angeles, California) is an American singer-songwriter who was with the rock band Oingo Boingo throughout the 1980s, and has since gone on to become one of the most sought-after composers working in Hollywood today. ... Cover may mean: Cover (telecommunications), a communications concealment technique Cover (philately), generic term for envelope or package Cover version, a new version of a previously recorded song Cover band, a musical band that plays only covers Cover (topology), the mathematical concept of a collection of subsets of a set whose... Aerosmith is a prominent American rock band, which regards itself as Americas Greatest Rock and Roll Band.[1] [2] Although they are known as the bad boys from Boston, none of the members are actually from the city. ... Joe Perry on the cover of Guitar for the Practicing Musician, October, 1989 Anthony Joseph Joe Perry (Born September 10, 1950 in Lawrence, Massachusetts), is the lead guitarist and a contributing songwriter for the rock band Aerosmith. ...


Theme music has been a feature of the majority of television programs since the medium's inception, as it was for the ancestral radio shows that provided their inspiration. Programs have used theme music in a huge variety of styles, sometimes adapted from existing tunes, some composed specifically for the purpose. A few have been released commercially and become popular hits; examples would include the theme tune to Friends, "I'll Be There For You", which was a hit for The Rembrandts, the theme from S.W.A.T., which was a hit for Rhythm Heritage, and the theme song from Drake and Josh, which was a hit for Drake Bell. Jan Hammer had a major hit with the theme from Miami Vice in the 1980s. Friends is a situation comedy about a group of six friends living in New York City. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... The Rembrandts are a band formed by Phil Sōlem and Danny Wilde in 1989. ... A 1970s American television series about the adventures of the Los Angeles Police Departments Special Weapons And Tactics (S.W.A.T.) team. ... Rhythm Heritage was a 1970s American disco-funk band, best known for their 1976 U.S. #1 single Theme from They also recorded themes for several other ABC television shows, including Keep Your Eye On The Sparrow from Baretta. ... (From the Left) Josh Peck, Miranda Cosgrove and Drake Bell. ... Drake Bell (born Jared Drake Bell on June 27, 1986) is an American actor, guitarist and singer/songwriter. ... Jan Hammer (born 17 April 1948, in Prague, Czechoslovakia) is a composer and musician. ... Miami Vice was a popular television series (five seasons on NBC from 1984-1989) starring Don Johnson (James Sonny Crockett) and Philip Michael Thomas (Ricardo Rico Tubbs) as two Miami police detectives working undercover. ...

Other themes, like the music for The Young and the Restless, Days of Our Lives, and Coronation Street have become iconic mostly due to the shows' respective longevities. Unlike others, these serials have not strayed from the original theme mix much, if at all, allowing them to be known by multiple generations of television viewers. The Young and the Restless (commonly abbreviated to Y&R) is an American soap opera that takes place in Genoa City, Wisconsin (named after a vacation spot that series creators William J. Bell and Lee Phillip Bell visited annually). ... This article is becoming very long. ... Coronation Street is Britains longest-running television soap opera and its consistently highest-rating programme. ...

Virtually every TV show has specific, melodic theme music, even if it's just a few notes (such as the snatch of eerie music that fades in and out in the title sequence for Lost). One famous exception is 60 Minutes, which features only the ticking hand of a Heuer stopwatch. Lost is an American drama/ thriller television series that follows the present and past lives of a group of plane crash survivors on a mysterious tropical island, somewhere in the South Pacific. ... The ticking TAG Heuer stopwatch from 60 Minutes. ... TAG Heuer is a Swiss watchmaker known for manufacturing high-end sports watches and chronographs for both men and women. ... A stopwatch is a timepiece designed to measure the amount of time elapsed from a particular time when activated and when the piece is deactivated. ...

Hit Songs as themes

Some series use major hit songs that were popular before the shows' creation. A well known example is the CSI franchise, with each series having a well known song by The Who for their theme song. Another series, Murphy Brown, used a different classic Motown song each week as the show's opening theme. Happy Days used a newly recorded version of "Rock Around the Clock" by Bill Haley during its first season, resulting in the original 1954 recording of the song re-entering the American pop charts after 20 years. The show Life Goes On used a cover version of the Beatles' hit song "Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da". CSI: Crime Scene Investigation is a popular Alliance Atlantis/CBS police procedural television series, running since October 2000, about a team of forensic scientists. ... The Who are an English rock band who first came to prominence in the 1960s and grew in stature to be popularly considered one of the greatest rock n roll bands of all time [1][2] [3] [4]. Except for periods of retirement from 1983 to 1988 and from 1990... Murphy Brown was an American situation comedy which aired on CBS from November 14, 1988 to May 18, 1998. ... Motown Records, Inc. ... Happy Days was a popular American television sitcom that originally aired between 1974 and 1984 on the ABC television network. ... This article is about the song. ... Bill Haley, with his band, the Comets, was one of the first rock and roll acts to tour the United Kingdom. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... The Beatles were an English rock group from Liverpool. ... Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da is a Beatles song from double-disc album The Beatles (also known as The White Album). ...


Also notable is the Law & Order series, which started out with one theme song for Law and Order, and remixed it for its three spinoffs (Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, and Law & Order: Trial by Jury). The related reality show Crime and Punishment also aired with a remix of the theme. Law & Order is an American television police procedural and legal drama set in New York City. ... Law & Order: Special Victims Unit - Season 5 DVD Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (also known as Law & Order: SVU) is the first of three spin-offs of Law & Order (the other two being Law & Order: Criminal Intent and Law & Order: Trial by Jury; all series are presented on the NBC... Law & Order: Criminal Intent is a United States crime drama television series that began in 2001. ... Law and Order: Trial by Jury is the third spinoff of Law & Order; it focuses on the court room process, as opposed to particular topics of crime. ... Crime & Punishment, also known as Law & Order: Crime & Punishment, was a 2002 reality television spin-off of the Law & Order franchise. ...

Radio programs with notable theme music include Just a Minute, which uses a high-speed rendition of the "Minute Waltz" by Frédéric Chopin. Just a Minute is a BBC Radio 4 radio comedy panel game which has been running continuously since its first broadcast on December 22, 1967. ... The Waltz in D flat major, opus 64, No. ... The only known photograph of Frédéric Chopin (commonly mistaken for a daguerrotype), taken by Louis-Auguste Bisson in 1849. ...

Minimization of Importance

In the 1990s, American network television began reducing the importance of opening and closing themes in a drive to decrease intervals between programs (thereby discouraging channel switching) and to address reduced storytelling time due to increased commericals. A number of themes, such as the theme to Law & Order, were rearranged in shorter formats (the current (2006) L&O theme runs about 1/3 the length of the theme as played during the first season of the series in 1990). Closing themes are now rarely heard during their original broadcast as networks instead show promos and advertisements with the credits squeezed to the side; some shows still have such themes, however they tend to only be heard on home video/DVD release or in syndication, a lot of shows now don't have ending theme tunes instead a final tag scene is played under the credits - this is usually not relevant to the episodes story. Some series, such as the 2005 series Threshold and Lost, have no opening credits theme music at all. Threshold was a science fiction drama television series that first aired on CBS in September 2005. ...

See also

List of band theme songs List of theme songs which mention their show in the lyrics List of theme songs which dont mention their show in the lyrics List of theme songs without lyrics This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might...

External links

  Results from FactBites:
Everwood Music Guide - Theme, Score, and Piano Music (492 words)
Everwood's theme and score music are all original instrumental compositions by Blake Neely.
The theme music used during the first season was nominated for an emmy award for best original theme song, though plans were already in the works to adapt a new arrangement of the theme for the second season's opening credits.
The sheet music for the theme song will also in all likelyhood be released at some point.
Masterpiece Theatre | Series | The Theme Music (330 words)
This now instantly recognizable music was originally written for the court of Louis XV, King of France.
Recorded in Boston on June 3, 2000, the music was post-produced and mixed in Los Angeles.
The theme will accompany the series open and closing credits for each of the nine films included in the American Collection series, premiering on PBS on Wednesday, October 25, 2000.
  More results at FactBites »



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