November 14th, 2018

I listen

Time continues to be decorated: a music-related post

Worth being reminded: John Barry makes things more elegant.

One of the albums I'm currently borrowing on the increasingly useful app called Hoopla is a rerecording of his score to the 1980 romance Somewhere in Time. Modern-day Christopher Reeve and person from the past Jane Seymour fall in love through time travel, in a story Richard Matheson adapted for film from his novel, and Barry is there with his orchestra to help us feel, really feel, this story. As a good film score should.

I'd never listened to this score before; I borrowed it because I was also borrowing Nirvana's 1989 album Bleach through Hoopla and wanted something gentle, to counterbalance that. (I'd been leaning towards Barry's Dances With Wolves, but that is not available through that app.) It's a handsome, lush rerecording, performed by the a Royal Scottish National Orchestra and conducted by fellow film composer John Debney. Varese Sarabande, a record label which has released an enormous amount of film music I love, commissioned and released the album.

Hoopla allows you to borrow music, audio books, comic books, and movies. I've squirreled away lists of stuff I plan to borrow through it: the surprisingly hard-to-find soundtrack to 1984's Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, for instance, or films ranging from the Disney 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea to Wonder Boys to Jerry Lewis's The Nutty Professor to David Lynch's bonkers-and-disturbing-even-for-him Lost Highway. Last year I first used it to listen to an audio recording of H. Rider Haggard's epic-style novel Eric Brighteyes; it was the only way I could borrow the work. (Haggard created the pulp character Allan Quatermain, of King Solomon's Mines, to name perhaps his most famous creation.) Other stuff I've borrowed through Hoopla includes the music of Lady Gaga, NWA, Jay-Z, and Led Zeppelin (a lot of Led Zeppelin), and the Tower Records documentary All Things Must Pass.

I can listen to, watch, and read more. I'm relieved I have this other way to do so.