Saturday, February 10, 2007

"The Greatest Enthusiasm and Confidence in the Mission"

Prophetic words, spoken by an AI.

Those were spoken by HAL, as astronaut David Bowman was entering the computer's logic core to shut off HAL's higher functions.

The only reason I bring this up is that I got a CD in the mail today. It's the original score to the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey, written by Alex North. He composed this music for the film, unaware that the film's director, Stanley Kubrick, had no intention of using it. So it sat unused and (basically) unheard for decades.

A bunch of years ago Mr. North gave Jerry Goldsmith a listen to the music, and Jerry convinced him that it should be recorded. The Varese Sarabande label put out a CD in 1993. It was marvelous music, even though a mistake was made, and the first track was actually for a different North score: the film Africa.

A few months ago word came out that the Intrada label was going to release the actual tracks from the score. Many people in the film score fan community were critical of this, as it wasn't going to be in the "new millennium super-duper-surround-sound-ultra-stereo." Didn't care: I wanted it. Trouble is, I couldn't really afford it, as I'm still unemployed. However, my friend - and fellow film music buff Ed - bought it for me for Christmas (even though it wasn't released until the end of January 2007).

I finally received it today, uploaded it into iTunes for my iPod, andwas going to listen, but...

While I was getting the computer going with iTunes, I found out that TCM channel was showing 2001 as part of their "31 Days of Oscar." So I just had to watch it; it's like a personal law to me.

So I still haven't been able to listen to the CD, but I will. And when visitors' nights at the observatory start up in the spring, this music, plus the music used in the film, the Varese issue of North's score, and the score to 2010 will be playing as I show people the wonders of the universe.

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