Soundtracks and Singles 1963-1966


The three-CD set Soundtracks and Singles 1963-1966 compiles the original soundtrack albums for Zulu (1964) and Four in the Morning (1965), both composed and conducted by John Barry, together with other recordings he made for Ember Records. The BAFTA-nominated Zulu was directed by Cy Endfield with a cast including Stanley Baker, Michael Caine, and Jack Hawkins. The film depicts British Army's defense of (and the Zulus' fearless assault on) Rorke's Drift during the Anglo-Zulu War of 1879. Originally released in 1964, and here mastered from original stereo tapes, the album comprises soundtrack music (with two of the tracks incorporating narration by Richard Burton) and "A Selection of Zulu Stamps," which are essentially beat instrumentals flavored with southern-African influences performed by the John Barry Seven. Anthony Simmons's Four in the Morning won the Golden Sail award for best feature film at the Locarno International Film Festival, and earned Judi Dench a BAFTA Award for Most Promising Newcomer in 1965. The soundtrack album comprises John Barry's haunting original score plus four excerpts of dialogue featuring Dench, Ann Lynn, Norman Rodway, Brian Phelan, and Joe Melia. The dialogue only exists in mono, so the entire album is presented here in mono, followed by the music-only tracks in stereo, again mastered from original tapes. Both soundtrack albums were originally released on British independent label Ember Records, where John Barry was associate producer and head of A&R in the early '60s. A third disc spotlights other John Barry recordings for the label. These include two UK hit singles: the From Russia with Love theme (here also in an alternative version with organ) and the Barry-produced "Christine," a satirical commentary on the Profumo affair, credited to the mysterious Miss X, as well as "Fancy Dance," which served as the theme to the BBC's twice-weekly soap opera The Newcomers from 1965 to 1967. Barry (1933-2011) was one of the best-known composers of film music in the world. He went on to score many notable soundtracks, including the award-winning Born Free (1966), The Lion in Winter (1968), Midnight Cowboy (1969), The Cotton Club (1984), Out of Africa (1985), and Dances with Wolves (1990). In 1999 Barry was appointed OBE for services to music, and in 2002 he received the GoldenEye award, courtesy of the Ian Fleming Foundation.