Friday, September 19, 2008

Movie Music: Tops of the Pops

In honor of the 50th anniversary of Billboard's Hot 100 chart, the magazine has put together their "definitive list of the Hot 100's top 100 songs from the chart's first 50 years" (August 1958 through July 2008). While perusing the list (and wondering why some of the newer songs I have never heard of, let alone heard ... pfft, kids today), I noticed quite a few Academy Award winning Best Original Songs, as well as a few nominees as well. In ascending order:
  • "The Way We Were" from The Way We Were, composed by Marvin Hamlisch and Alan and Marilyn Bergman, recorded by Barbra Streisand -- Oscar winner, #90 on the chart.
  • "Raindrops Keep Fallin' On My Head" from Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, composed by Burt Bacharach and Hal David, recorded by B.J. Thomas -- Oscar winner, #85.
  • "Say You, Say Me" from White Nights, composed and recorded by Lionel Ritchie -- Oscar winner, #74.
  • "Flashdance … What a Feeling" from Flashdance, composed by Giorgio Moroder, Irene Cara and Keith Forsey, recorded by Cara -- Oscar winner, #26.
  • "Eye of the Tiger" from Rocky III, composed by Jim Peterik and Frankie Sullivan III, recorded by Survivor -- Oscar nominee, #21.
  • "(Everything I Do) I Do It For You" from Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, composed by Bryan Adams, Michael Kamen and Robert John Lange, recorded by Adams -- Oscar nominee, #16.
  • "Endless Love" from Endless Love, composed by Lionel Ritchie, recorded by Diana Ross and Ritchie -- Oscar nominee, #13.
  • "You Light Up My Life" from You Light Up My Life, composed by Joseph Brooks, recorded by Debby Boone -- Oscar winner, #7.
  • "How Do I Live" from Con Air, composed by Diane Warren, recorded by LeAnn Rimes -- Oscar nominee, #4.
That's right, according to these questionably determined rankings, the most successful film song of the past fifty years is from a crappy Nicolas Cage movie. Granted, the latter two records weren't the versions heard in the actual movies (Kacey Cisyk -- dubbing for Didi Cohn -- and Trisha Yearwood did the actual soundtrack honors, respectively), so if we discount those two, it means the most successful film song of the past fifty years is from a crappy Brooke Shields movie. I think I'll stick with the Guinness Book of Records' biggest selling single of all time, the Academy Award winning "White Christmas" (from Holiday Inn, composed by Irving Berlin and recorded by Bing Crosby).

To continue to prove the ignominious tastes of the record buying public, the Billboard Top 10 Original TV Theme Songs lists the #1 TV tune as "How Do You Talk to an Angel" from the short-lived teen soap The Heights. That's right, the most successful TV theme song of the past fifty years is from a crappy Aaron Spelling show.

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