The Ongoing History of New Music, episode 926: The music is Bond. James Bond.

When a movie is successful, you can be sure that someone somewhere wants more. That’s when we get a sequel. If that follow-up does well, then the sequel gets a sequel. And if that film finds traction, then you reach the level of franchise.

We’ve seen many movie franchises over the decades, Star Wars and Star Trek being among the most famous and the longest-lasting. But then we have all the Fast and the Furious films, Harry Potter, Mission Impossible, Planet of the Apes, Toy Story all the Lord of the Rings movies, and so on. And I haven’t even mentioned the Marvel Cinematic Universe, which has something like three dozen movies in the canon. The DC Extended Universe has almost 30.

Studios and producers love movie franchises because they’re reliable sources of revenue practically forever. Fans will flock to any new released while they’re still bingeing on the older movies. And don’t even get me started on things like merchandising.

What’s the oldest movie franchise? I’m going with King Kong. The first Kong film appeared in 1933. The first Alice in Wonderland movie came out the same year. The Wizard of Oz fits this definition. There have been four Oz films since 1930. What about Godzilla? That franchise started in 1954,

Finally, we get to James Bond.

As I write this, there have been 27 official James Bond movies, starting with Dr. No in 1962. Box office grosses are around US$14 billion. And that’s just the movies. What about the music that’s appeared in Bond films?

There are few crossover points that are more prestigious than being tapped to do a theme for a Bond film. Every time a new chapter in the franchise is announced, we wonder who will get to do the big theme. And the competition is furious.

Sounds like there’s some interesting music history here. And there is.

Songs here on this show include:

  • Paul McCartney and Wings, Live and Let Die
  • Duran Duran, A Few to a Kill
  • a-ha, The Living Daylights
  • Tina Turner, Goldeneye
  • Garbage, The World is Not Enough
  • Chris Cornell, You Know My Name
  • Jack White & Alicia Keys, Another Way to Die
  • Radiohead, SPECTRE
  • Billie Eilish, No Time to Die

Plus clips from Tom Jones, Shirley Bassey, Sheena Easton, Carly Simon, Madonna, Adele, and many others. There’s a lot of music to cover.

Eric Wilhite has this playlist for us.

Don’t forget that you can get the podcast version of this podcast through iTunes or wherever you get your on-demand audio.

The Ongoing History of New Music can be heard on the following stations:

We’re still looking for more affiliates in Calgary, Kamloops, Kelowna, Regina, Saskatoon, Brandon, Windsor,  Montreal, Charlottetown, Moncton, Fredericton, and St John’s, and anywhere else with a transmitter. If you’re in any of those markets and you want the show, lemme know and I’ll see what I can do.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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