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Elizabeth Taylor In London

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Album Review

You might find this filed under Elizabeth Taylor in stores, so large is her name in the title on the front cover. However, it's not an Elizabeth Taylor album, although her voice is occasionally heard reciting historical prose. Rather, it's a largely instrumental soundtrack to a 1963 television special in which she took viewers on a tour through London, the score composed by John Barry. It's not one of Barry's major works, but if you do enjoy his music, especially from this period, you'll be pleased to hear it. It's richly orchestrated without being overly lush, with the sweeping dramatic grandeur typical of much of his output from the era. A bit of the spy/suspense flavor for which he was often known surfaces at times (especially "The Fire of London"), but it's not too close to James Bond territory. While it's usually in a vividly cinematic style that can be languid or tense, there are also occasional echoes of jazz and waltz tempos, with the melody of "Greensleeves" reappearing at various points as a kind of recurring motif.


Born: 03 November 1933 in York, England

Genre: Soundtrack

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

John Barry was one of the best-known composers of soundtrack music of the late 20th and early 21st centuries, but his career carried him through a multitude of music genres and styles. He was best-known in film in connection with his work on the James Bond pictures, but Barry was also the holder of five Academy Awards, none of them for the Bond movies. Born Free (for which he won Oscars for Best Score and Best Song), The Lion in Winter, Out of Africa, and Dances with Wolves are hardly unknown films...
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