The Parker Novels by Richard Stark (AKA Donald E. Westlake), other works by DEW, and crime fiction in general
Well, it’s a nice gig for Buckley, anyway. His biggest screen credit is “The Town”, but he seems to have been the junior partner on that score. Harry Gregson-Williams is also credited for the music, and he’s a much bigger name.
The only film composer whom I actively keep track of is Stewart Copeland, of Police fame. I have most of his scores on CD and it would have been nice for him to do Parker, but I guess his heyday as a screen composer is over. I also like Basil Poledouris and Ennio Morricone. Never heard of David Buckley. A good score is more important that one would think–think of Jaws, and how much John Williams contributed to the scariness of that film. Even Spielberg attributed 50% of the film’s success to Williams.
One composer I could almost always identify was the late John Barry who scored many of the Bond films and won Oscars for Out of Africa and Dances With Wolves. Beautiful stuff. A musical score does indeed make a lot of difference in the final product. I’m still torn over the score for Drive. Very different for a crime flick. Some of it works for me and some of it doesn’t.
This is a very minor league production, so they are unlikely to score a major league composer.
You’d need a Jazz-based score for Parker, who is a relic of the Swing Era. Westlake came from a generation that just barely missed out on Rock&Roll (just two years older than Elvis). He’s constantly referring to Jazz musicians and big bands in his books. That was his music. Parker, of course, doesn’t have any music in his head. So to him this would all be quite irrelevant. ;)
I’m not quite sure I agree you’d need a Jazz score, Chris. I could see an electronic score working, like the one from The Anderson Tapes. Or an orchestral. As you mentioned, I don’t remember Parker having an opinion on any style of music, cinema, books, whatever. I do remember him positing the opinion that a cookie Paul Brock gave him in The Sour Lemon Score was tasty, but that’s about it. He seems to not notice quality in many things other than weapons, people, and heist plans.
John Barry is a great composer, Clue. I have a lot of the Bond soundtracks in my CD collection. The new Bond composer–can’t remember his name–just isn’t as good. The score of Drive was half and half. Some scenes worked and others didn’t. I liked the opening number, Nightcall by Kavinsky. It suited the opening well, but later on I think they relied too much on that 80′s electronica style.
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