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John Ford: Movie Music

GUEST,Colwyn Dane 24 Oct 00 - 08:41 PM
MichaelAnthony 25 Oct 00 - 12:34 AM
M. Ted (inactive) 25 Oct 00 - 02:20 PM
DougR 25 Oct 00 - 05:30 PM
GUEST,Colwyn Dane 25 Oct 00 - 08:43 PM
Garry Gillard 25 Oct 00 - 11:22 PM
M. Ted (inactive) 25 Oct 00 - 11:28 PM
GUEST,Colwyn Dane 26 Oct 00 - 07:22 PM
DougR 27 Oct 00 - 01:52 AM
Sourdough 28 Oct 00 - 11:43 PM
GUEST,Mickey191 29 Oct 00 - 01:52 AM
Sourdough 29 Oct 00 - 02:47 AM
GUEST,Colwyn Dane 29 Oct 00 - 12:41 PM
DougR 29 Oct 00 - 02:32 PM
DougR 29 Oct 00 - 02:34 PM
DonMeixner 29 Oct 00 - 07:59 PM
DonMeixner 29 Oct 00 - 08:00 PM
DonMeixner 29 Oct 00 - 08:01 PM
Mickey191 29 Oct 00 - 08:52 PM
GUEST,Colwyn Dane 30 Oct 00 - 01:37 PM
DougR 30 Oct 00 - 04:20 PM
DougR 30 Oct 00 - 06:58 PM
DougR 30 Oct 00 - 08:41 PM
DougR 31 Oct 00 - 12:55 AM
GUEST,guest:Thom Maurais 31 Oct 00 - 04:35 AM
Carlin 31 Oct 00 - 07:58 AM
DougR 31 Oct 00 - 11:11 AM
JTT 31 Oct 00 - 03:28 PM
GUEST,Colwyn Dane 31 Oct 00 - 05:32 PM
DougR 31 Oct 00 - 06:53 PM
L R Mole 01 Nov 00 - 09:53 AM
NH Dave 01 Nov 00 - 01:50 PM
beachcomber 02 Nov 00 - 03:51 PM
Genie 10 Sep 02 - 04:39 PM
DougR 10 Sep 02 - 05:45 PM
JJ 10 Sep 02 - 06:07 PM
DougR 12 Sep 02 - 06:41 PM
GUEST,Smokey447 10 Feb 05 - 06:17 PM
DonMeixner 10 Feb 05 - 10:04 PM
GUEST,Chris B (Born Again Scouser) 11 Feb 05 - 05:24 AM
GUEST,GeorgeRoswell 28 Dec 10 - 02:35 AM
GUEST,erbert 28 Dec 10 - 03:22 AM
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Subject: John Ford: Movie Music
From: GUEST,Colwyn Dane
Date: 24 Oct 00 - 08:41 PM

G'day,

It seems to me that a lot of John Ford movies have a nice mix of action,drama,comedy and music.

Some of the music or songs from his movies I can recall but a lot has escaped:

The Informer had "The Minstrel Boy" and another one I can't remember - sung by a 'street-singer' perhaps 'The Rose of Tralee'?

They Were Expendable - "Battle Hymn Of The Republic"

The Quiet Man - "The Wild Colonial Boy" and "The Humour Is On Me Now"

Rio Grande - "I'll Take You Home Again Kathleen" and "Bold Fenian Men"

The Sun Shines Bright - "Marching Through Georgia" and "Tenting Tonight"

If you can help fill any of the blanks or add to this list it would be appreciated.

I can't think of a film maker today that has this technique of using 'good-music'
i.e. music that has been appreciated for a very long time and which gives the movie an extra 'coating', 'flavour' or 'feel'.

Bcnu.


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: MichaelAnthony
Date: 25 Oct 00 - 12:34 AM

Which of the above is your favorite to play and sing? I'd like to look a song up and check it out.

Thanks, Michael Anthony


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 25 Oct 00 - 02:20 PM

Some of his titles were even folksongs--"My Darling Clementine" and "She Wore a Yellow Ribbon"--and who can forget the wonderful Welsh mens chorus singing that ran through "How Green Was My Valley"--

"Stagecoach" is filled with "I'm Going to Leave Old Texas Now"--

Ford was unquestionably one of the greatest of the great filmakers--he directed more that 140 films--but the music technique was really an extension of the device that was used in silent movies, of playing a bit of a familiar melody to underscore the action on the screen--the leitmotif, almost, anyway. They do use this today, except that they use familiar recordings instead of just the melodies, and the material is selected with the idea that it should be familiar to the demographic group that the film was aimed at, and that they should then want to buy the soundtrack album--This really is not the same thing, at least artistically, though--


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: DougR
Date: 25 Oct 00 - 05:30 PM

If you would like to read an excellent biography of John Ford, I can recommend, "Print the Legend," by Scott Eyman. I agree that he was one of our great film directors. I don't know if anyone mentioned "The Isle of Innisfree" from the "Quiet Man." Not a true folk song perhaps, but it has become a part of the modern repertoire.

DougR


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: GUEST,Colwyn Dane
Date: 25 Oct 00 - 08:43 PM

G'day,

Doug I haven't read that one so will check with our Public Library.

One I have read is "About John Ford" written by the late Lindsay Anderson - he who directed "This Sporting Life", "If" and "O Lucky Man" - it has interviews with some of the stock players, Harry Carey, Ben Johnson and with Ford himself.
There is a great photograph in it, which was taken during the making of 'Liberty Valance';
and shows the major players Wayne,Stewart,Marvin et al,in a large tent, seated around a table having tea and biscuits.
Ford is at the head of the table and was obviously talking to this captive audience cos they are all looking like little children listening to a master storyteller.

Four o'clock tea was a regular occurrence on Ford's set.

MichaelAnthony I'll get back to you tomorrow.

Bcnu


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: Garry Gillard
Date: 25 Oct 00 - 11:22 PM

I saw Stagecoach recently. As I recall the credits said that the music was entirely made up of "American folk songs".

Garry


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 25 Oct 00 - 11:28 PM

Sounds like a great book--I'll have to get a copy--I have always love Lindsey Anderson's films, as well. When I saw "If" originally, I thought that it was a wonderful blend of realism and fantasy--saw it last summer, and, post Columbine, it seemed more prophesy than fantasy--


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: GUEST,Colwyn Dane
Date: 26 Oct 00 - 07:22 PM

G'day,

With Ford's Irish background it is no wonder that a lot of the featured music is from that part of the world.

In 'Rio Grande' when Victor McLaglen introduces the Regimental Singers "For this is for him it is"(approx)
and at the same time indicating with his head in the direction of the actor playing General Sheridan.
This lets us know that somehow the song is connected with Sheridan.
Maureen O'Hara, an Irish actress, is part of the listening group which includes John Wayne;
she obviously knows what is going to be sung for when she sits down,a look of happy anticipation appears on her face.

Of course when the song is sung we become aware of the connection between it and Sheridan.

My favourites are from 'Rio Grande' and 'The Quiet Man'.

Hope this helps.

Bcnu.


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: DougR
Date: 27 Oct 00 - 01:52 AM

Ford tended to use the same song in several movies too. One tune (I don't know the namd of it) appears in the movie he did on Abraham Lincoln starring Henry Fonda. I seem to recall that it was the background music for the scene where Lincoln kneels at the grave of his sweetheart's grave. The tune shows up again in "The Searchers," which was shot many years later.

DougR


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: Sourdough
Date: 28 Oct 00 - 11:43 PM

In "She WOre a Yellow Ribbon", he used "THe Girl I LEft Behind Me" andthe tune that I can never remember, it was Custer's favorite, an old irish tune that might have had a man's name.

Sourdough


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: GUEST,Mickey191
Date: 29 Oct 00 - 01:52 AM

Sourdough, is the song "The Garryowen" the favorite of Custer? I think they played it also in "Little Big Man" when Custer's troops were moving in. Great marching song. In the credits on "The Quiet Man" there is listed in the cast a Frances Ford. Someone said it was John Ford's wife who played the minister's wife. Can anyone tell me if this is true? Slainte Maithe.


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: Sourdough
Date: 29 Oct 00 - 02:47 AM

You are right, it was Garry Owen. I just couldn't think of it at the time.

A number of years ago, I spent the night camping on a bit of sandy ground in Monument Valley. This is the beautiful place filled with giant monoliths and colored with clays laid down by oceans that have long ago evaporated under the desert sun.

I had spent the night looking up at the stars that were so clear in the dry air. I would wake up periodically and look up at he sky,. I could get some idea of how long my eyes had been closed by how far the giant "wheel of heaven" clock with the Big Dipper as its hand had whirled.

The night before, I had met a young Navajo Park Ranger, Roger Whitehair. He had given me permission to take my motorcycle down into the valley and I had done that. Although the road was mostly soft red sand, I managed to handle the big, baggage loaded bike. I needed to be careful but I could handle the road and the sights made it worth it.

In the morning, I loaded the bike and moved off again down the road in first gear. I felt confident enough so that I was able to drive in first gear at what I imagined was a horse's walking speed.

The sun got higher it it was hot. I decided to take a break. I found a flat rock that would support the sidestand of the bike and climbed up the shadow-side of one of a stone monoliths, a giant butte that looked like a monument out of Classical Egypt.

I reached into my shirt pocket and took out my harmonica. I noodled around for a bit the way I usually do knowing that a tune would come, on its own, and it would be something that I would want to play. Sure enough, a tune came. THe funny thing was, I didn't know what it was. THat isn't to say that I didn't recognize it. It did sound familiar but I was sure I didn't know it.

I listened as I played and tried to make sense out of the memory of this song. It sounded Irish to me. It was a dance tune but I didn't have a clue as to why I should be playing a half-remembered Irish dance tune in Monument Valley. I didn't have the answer for about a year but one evening as I was watching television, I had a chance to see one of my favorite Westerns, "She Wore a Yellow Ribbon". It was shot in Monument Valley. In fact, that movie, and other Ford movies shot in Monument Valley, had been part of the reason I had gone there in the first place.

It was from the sound track that I learned the connection between my mystery hamonica tune and Monument Valley had been. It was "The Girl I Left Behind Me" and it made up much of the sound track of "She Wore a Yellow Ribbon". It's amazing how the logic of music and its associations work their magic and appear unbidden but at the right time. Sourdough


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: GUEST,Colwyn Dane
Date: 29 Oct 00 - 12:41 PM

G'day

Mickey191, Yes Francis Ford,the brother of John Ford, was in 'The Quiet Man' and other movies, mainly his brother John's.

Thats a fine story Sourdough as your associations came thru.
I read somewhere that the great human intellect can only compare and associate.

"She Wore a Yellow Ribbon" won an Oscar for photography, and deservedly so; some lovely images are captured.

Bcnu.


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: DougR
Date: 29 Oct 00 - 02:32 PM

BCNU answered the question about Francis Ford, who was John Ford's brother who got John into the movie business in the first place. Mildred Natwick played the wife of the Episcopal rector. The rector was played by Barry Fitzgerald's bother.

Ford's wife was named Mary.

DougR


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: DougR
Date: 29 Oct 00 - 02:34 PM

Oops! Them moment I hit the send button I knew I was wrong. Mildred Natwick played the Widow Talan.

DougR


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: DonMeixner
Date: 29 Oct 00 - 07:59 PM

I believe that The Rakes of Mallow are played often in The Quiet Man by an accordion player.

And lets don't forget that The Regimental Singers were The Sins of the Pioneers and Dick Foran.

Ah Ha San Antone, was also in Rio Grande.

Don


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: DonMeixner
Date: 29 Oct 00 - 08:00 PM

SINS OF THE PIONEERS!!!!

Is freudian or what? Its Sons of rhe Pioneers ofcourse.

Don


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: DonMeixner
Date: 29 Oct 00 - 08:01 PM

THE PIONEERS!!

I shouldn't type in the dark


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: Mickey191
Date: 29 Oct 00 - 08:52 PM

To Colwyn Dane, Thanks for the correction-I thought the name was spelled In the feminine form. Do you know what part his brother played? The Quiet Man played off and on to s.r.o. for one year in a theatre in Pelham N.Y. where I was an usher. No movie could compare with it as far as generating laughter and an all around good feeling for the audience. They loved it. I can still remember most of the dialogue. Here's a stick to beat the lovely lady-Don't be playing patty fingers in the holy water-who gave you leave to be kissing me?( From the still beautiful Miss O'Hara who is in a tv movie tonight) It is still great to watch with a flawless cast (many Abby Players) and the beauty of Ireland. Thanks for allowing me to ramble . Sourdough you sure can string them words together. Slainte Maithe


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: GUEST,Colwyn Dane
Date: 30 Oct 00 - 01:37 PM

G'day,

Mickey191
Francis Ford played the part of the old guy who was in his 'death bed' receiving the last rites from the priest.
The sounds of the big fight reached him and he was up and away to get a front row seat. The character was called Dan Tobin.

There is a "Quiet Man" industry in that part of Ireland, where the exteriors were shot; and this after 48 years.

Just looking at a review of the film by Henry Hart who writes:

'Ford's art and artifice...are employed to reveal a way of life - stable, rooted, honourable, purposeful in nature's way,
and thereby rhythmic. Everyone is an individual,yet everyone and everthing has a place.'

DonMeixner you are right the 'Ah Ha San Antone' song was sung by Ben Johnson and Harry Carey - thanks for that contribution.

Bcnu.


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: DougR
Date: 30 Oct 00 - 04:20 PM

John Ford had an accordianist on hand on all his productions to play background music between takes. The music was generally Irish tunes that Ford loved. He probably was the accordian player referred to previously in the Quiet Man. Anybody know his name? I do. If now one comes up with it in the next few posts, I'll tell you his name.

DougR


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: DougR
Date: 30 Oct 00 - 06:58 PM

I just received Kendall Morse's tape, in the mail, and one of the songs he sings on it leaped out at me! I'd swear it is a song John Ford used in several movies, and particularly in "Young Abe Linclon," and "The Searchers." The title is "Ashes on the Sea." Anybody know anything about this song? I had thought the song was "Lorena" but they may just have similar tunes.

DougR

DougR


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: DougR
Date: 30 Oct 00 - 08:41 PM

Kendall responded to my inquiry about "Ashes on the Sea." The song was written by Utah Phillips as a memoriaum to Woodie Guthrie, so the tune in the John Ford films is probably "Lorena."

DougR


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: DougR
Date: 31 Oct 00 - 12:55 AM

Danny Borzage.

DougR


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: GUEST,guest:Thom Maurais
Date: 31 Oct 00 - 04:35 AM

The accordian player at the pub in the Quiet Man is none other than Ken Curtis, a member of Ford's stable of actors he used over and over again. If you watch closely when they are singing "Wild colonial Boy" you will notice that at first he has his hat on, then it disappears, and then magically returns. The Reverand Mr.Playfair was played by Arthur Shields, and the Catholic Priest was played by Ward Bond.


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: Carlin
Date: 31 Oct 00 - 07:58 AM

'Garryowen' is also the tune the Light Brigade used when they charged into 'the valley of death' at Balaclava.

I think Dale Evans wrote the 'Aha San Anton'' song in 'Rio Grande'. That movie BTW was made in order to get the financing for 'The Quiet Man'. Republic didn't want to put up the money for TQM because the were not sure how much mass appeal the story would have. They agreed to finance it, if Ford would also make another western for them.


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: DougR
Date: 31 Oct 00 - 11:11 AM

You're absolutely right, Guest (by the way why don't you join up?). I haven't seen the Quiet Man in awhile, but in my mind's eye, I do remember that it was Ken Curtis in the bar scene playing the accordian. Did you know, by the way, that Ken Curtis married John Ford's daughter? I'll betcha the real accordian music is provided by Dan Borzage, though. DougR


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: JTT
Date: 31 Oct 00 - 03:28 PM

Garryowen, by the way, is a place, not a person - it's an area in Limerick; it's also a move in rugby where the ball is kicked up and over.


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: GUEST,Colwyn Dane
Date: 31 Oct 00 - 05:32 PM

G'day,

DougR, for what it is worth, I have been having a look at a short CV of Ken Curtis and whilst he began as a singer with Tommy Dorsey and Shep Fields there is no mention of him having been an accordionist.

I was looking at the IMDB Here
and for "The Quiet Man" , it shows that 'Galway Bay' and 'The Young May Moon' featured in the film too.

The background to 'Garryowen' can be found here.

Bcnu


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: DougR
Date: 31 Oct 00 - 06:53 PM

No, Guest, I doubt Ken Curtis was actually playing the accordian in those scenes. I seem to remember a couple of scenes he was in. One in the Pub, of course, and I believe an exterior scene.

I guess that film has become pretty much a cult film among lovers of the Irish.

DougR


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: L R Mole
Date: 01 Nov 00 - 09:53 AM

And Curtis, of course, would be Festus Hagen on later TV "Gunsmokes".


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: NH Dave
Date: 01 Nov 00 - 01:50 PM

While many tunes have been mentioned as being used in "The Quiet Man" I would suggest that the film had "The Rakes of Mallow" playing in the background for most of the film.

Dave


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: beachcomber
Date: 02 Nov 00 - 03:51 PM

Yes Arthur Shiels was in fact Barry Fitzgerald's brother. No one has yet mentioned Maureen O@Hara singing (Very well too) "I wish I had a Kerry Cow" also in "The Quiet Man". I believe it was released as a single afterwards , I have heard it on various Radio Request shows over the years.


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: Genie
Date: 10 Sep 02 - 04:39 PM

Doug R., I remember "Lorena" being used in "The Searchers," but I can't recall whether it was sung or just played instrumentallly. Around that same time period I had a record of a chorale (The Roger Wagner Chorale or The Norman Luboff Choir) singing the song, but I believed they called it "Sweet Lorena," and they tune had been modified ever so slightly. The words they sang were quite different from the original ones posted here in the DT, though. I'm wondering which words, if any, John Ford used in "The Searchers."

Genie


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: DougR
Date: 10 Sep 02 - 05:45 PM

Genie: I'm glad you renewed this thread. I enjoyed re-reading every post.

I don't recall the song, "Lorena", being sung in "The Searchers," Genie, I think it was an instrumental.

DougR


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: JJ
Date: 10 Sep 02 - 06:07 PM

"Lorena" plays in the background (in a medley, I seem to recall) as Ethan Edwards (John Wayne) rides slowly up to his brother Aaron's house for the first time, returning home long after the Civil War. Why "Lorena," a love song? Because Aaron's wife had been in love with Ethan, and may be still.


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: DougR
Date: 12 Sep 02 - 06:41 PM

You're right, JJ.

DougR


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: GUEST,Smokey447
Date: 10 Feb 05 - 06:17 PM

Thanks one and all, the song I was looking for was the Rakes of Mallow which Barry hummed all thru the movie. I heard it played on a fiddle one time and am trying to get a copy of it done on an Irish fiddle.


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: DonMeixner
Date: 10 Feb 05 - 10:04 PM

Smokey,

Up here in Syracuse NY it is the tune played for the set dance The Siege of Innis. That may be the case elsewhere as well. You may find it as such in sheet music or on a CD too.

Don


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: GUEST,Chris B (Born Again Scouser)
Date: 11 Feb 05 - 05:24 AM

JJ/DougR

Yes, 'Lorena' is used as an overture in 'The Searchers'. Don't think there's any conscious relevance to Wayne's character being in love with his sister-in-law. According to Ken Burn's Civil War series 'Lorena' was a popular song on both sides during the Civil War - a bit like 'Lilli Marlene' in World War 2. The tune it segues into is also an adaptation of a civil war march - but I don't know the name.

Interestingly, the tune of 'Inisfree' comes from the same French operetta that provided the tune for the nazis' 'Horst Wessel Song' - try singing 'Inisfree' as a march and you'll see what I mean.


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: GUEST,GeorgeRoswell
Date: 28 Dec 10 - 02:35 AM

I happened to see both "The Quiet Man" and "The Searchers" shown at the annual John Wayne Film Festival in Newport Beach three years ago on the 100th anniversary of his birth. The panel discussion included Patrick Wayne and John Ford's grandson. IMDb.com now has much better information on soundtracks often including where the music can be found in the film. For example, it states that "Lorena" is part of the score in "The Searchers" as stated above. "I'll Take You Home Again, Kathleen" was used several times by Ford. I believe it is "The Isle of Innisfree" that is sung quite well by Maureen O'Hara in "The Quiet Man". The song I am looking for is the one called "Mush-Mush-Mush Tural-i-addy" sung by Barry Fitzgerald and others as they deliver the furniture the morning after the wedding. I'm sure this is traditional Irish and likely known by other titles with words that vary. Not only did Ford get a great feel for the time and place in his films by using folk tunes, he saved money by avoiding royalties to composers, and Ford generally brought in his films on time and under budget.


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Subject: RE: John Ford: Movie Music
From: GUEST,erbert
Date: 28 Dec 10 - 03:22 AM

I'm now re-watching John Wayne / John Ford classic westerns
for the 3rd. 4th, or 5th time since childhood back in the 60's.

And I am now appreciating just how well the music can add to the richness of the movie experience,
but sadly how badly dated the thick headed
'humorous' blarney knock about 'humour' scenes now stand out and detract like fingernails on blackboards
from otherwise top quality vintage movie art...

it really does hobble 'classics' like the "The Seekers"..

It took ages to persuade the wife to make an evening of sitting with me to watch "The Seekers"
since I last viewed it 20 odd years ago...

I doubt if we'll ever watch it again..

.. but I'm still going to make her watch John Wayne in "The Sons of Katy Elder" and "The War Wagon"
to get my own back for all her chick flick rom-coms I'm forced to endure..


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