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The Stringbeat Years

The Stringbeat Years cover2

Now available!

The Stringbeat Years: Songs accompanied by John Barry

Coming soon, a 4-CD box-set comprising of 144 tracks, a 24-page booklet (replete with period photographs and comprehensive notes) and including ten bonus tracks (among them the CD debut of the first ever cover version of a John Barry instrumental composition).

Featuring – for the first time – the film versions of ‘Mix me a Person’, ‘The Time has Come’, and ‘What a Whopper’ (slightly shortened). There’s also an unique opportunity to hear the original version of ‘Ah, Poor Little Baby’, making its premiere appearance on CD.


post-free in the UK
Europe £4.25
Japan  £5.60
USA    £5.75
Aus/NZ £6.65

The box-set is limited to 500 copies and is only £16.99 post-free in the UK, so don’t miss out!
It will only be available direct from this website!

So pre-order now!

Let us know if you aren't able to do this and we'll work out another way. 



From Russia With Love - Matt Monro

Saturday, 30 January 2010 13:15

From Russia With Love - Matt Monro
January 30, 2010

We are grateful to Richard Moore, who was responsible for the remastering on the new Matt Monro box-set, for providing the following definitive explanation to something which has puzzled Bond fans and others for years.

"The noise on From Russia - which I haven't been able to remove - is George Martin talking to Johnnie Spence during the Tack Piano overdub. This was recorded at half speed so what you're actually hearing is their conversation sped up - audible on both Mono and Stereo versions. The only way to remove it (and find out exactly what was said) is to listen to the multi track which was mysteriously missing until last week!!!!!"

Richard also confirmed that John Barry had no hand in the recording of the song, contrary to the impression given by various EMI soundtrack albums.

Source: Geoff Leonard

Matt Monro's From Russia With Love original session tapes missing
January 30, 2010

"Two of the missing tracks on my listing (From Russia With Love and Tahiti) were not supplied as they were marked NOT EMI – UA in other words United Artists.

This is not to say that we can't use the tracks, but that the original session tapes I wanted to use have been sent back to United Artists films in 2006. This leads to two months of fevered searching. United Artists is owned by MGM and they search everywhere they can think of – The James Bond archives, the MGM archives in the UK and USA and various sub archives – they can find nothing and what's more there is no record of anything being returned to them in the past three years.

So unfortunately these tapes have disappeared down some form of black hole – so I am left with Mono mixes of these tracks for this compilation.

I haven't given up though and although I haven't found the tapes yet, they are out there somewhere and can hopefully be used in a future project."

Source:, Richard Moore, "Spotlight on ... ' The Making of 'The Complete Singles Collection'

Source: Geoff Leonard

From Russia With Love - continued
February 3, 2010

Richard Moore, the co-researcher behind the "Special Reserve" Matt Monro book, lists Colin Keyes as arranger and conductor on Monro's This Way Mary/Wish Now Was Then single. We pointed out to him that EMI had provided label-copy to Play It Again (for The Don Black Songbook) which indicated that John Barry had this role, and that the original single bore that credit.

His reply was interesting:

"Yes this was a mystery solved in many ways. The original single doesn't list an arranger or conductor and no paperwork for this session other than the "red form" (which was the session booking form) survives and this has no indication of who it was. However, as I'm sure you're aware, Matt does not appear on the soundtrack of the film so it wasn't clear if John Barry had any involvement.

As luck would then have it, whilst Michele was interviewing Colin he spoke of his first session - This Way Mary/Wish Now Was Then.

A short while later Michele uncovered some contemporary paperwork which listed arrangers and conductors of all recent material (dating from about 1973) which once again confirmed Colin as Arranger and Conductor."

I found this pretty convincing, especially as I noted my (demo) copy of the single did not have any credit, but Barry expert Gareth Bramley is having none of it.

"The record release clearly states 'Orch. Arr & Cond by John Barry on both sides:

7YCA 33021/2 (DB 8860) p. 1972 by George Martin

The other 'Barry connection' (Curiouser & Curiouser/The Me I Never Knew) quite clearly sounds nothing like Barry and wasn't him and is also clearly credited:

7YCA 33158/9 (DB 8936) p. 20/10/72 by George Martin. Orchestra arr & cond by Colin Keyes

Why on earth should these details be wrong. It's obvious that - by listening to them - both are quite different in sound and are clearly different arrangers."

Source: Geoff Leonard


John Barry's music used on TV

Saturday, 30 January 2010 13:15

January 30, 2010

In the January 28th, 2010 edition of BBC 2's The Culture Show, a feature on Wikileaks, used the main theme from The Ipcress File, presumably to reflect the secrecy aspect of this website.

In the January 29th, 2010 edition of Andrew Marr's History of Modern Britain: The Land of Lost Content, focusing on the 50s and early 60s, Barry's music from Out Of Africa ("Safari") was used to accompany archive scenes from that era.

On 29 December 2009, BBC's documentary, The Many Faces of June Whitfield, included Barry's The Roll Dance (Chaplin) as the background music for the final three and a half-minutes, including the end credits.

During an episode of the popular BBC TV series Yes Minister, entitled "The Death List", Jim Hacker and his wife go to see a Bond film.
However, although the excerpt we see on the cinema screen is not from a real Bond film, the music we hear accompanying it is one of Barry's Mood tracks, recorded for Chappell a couple of years before the Bond series began!

Source: Geoff Leonard

1970s John Barry concerts

Saturday, 30 January 2010 13:03

added January 30, 2010

presented by

Part I conducted by MUIR MATHIESON
The Dambusters Eric Coates
1954 Directed by Michael Anderson. Starring Michael Redgrave and Richard Todd.
Legend of the Glass Mountain Nino Rota
1949 Directed by Henry Cass. Starring Michael Denison and Dulcie Gray.
Things to Come Sir Arthur Bliss
1935 Directed by William Cameron Menzies. Starring Raymond Massey and Ralph Richardson.
Limelight Charles Chaplin Solo violin, Erich Gruenberg
1952 Directed by Charles Chaplin. Starring Charles Chaplin and Claire Bloom.
The Big Country Jerome Moross
1958 Directed by William Wyler. Starring Gregory Peck and Jean Simmonds.
The Magnificent Seven Elmer Bernstein
1960 Directed by John Sturges. Starring Yul Brynner and Steve McQueen.
Henry V: St Crispin's Day Scene Sir William Walton, arr. Muir Mathieson Spoken by Bryan Forbes
1944 Directed by Laurence Olivier. Starring Laurence Olivier and Leslie Banks.

Interval of twenty minutes

Part II conducted by JOHN BARRY
Featuring John Barry's compositions for Bryan Forbes's films including:
Seance on a Wet Afternoon
1964 Starring Kim Stanley and Richard Attenborough.
The Whisperers
1966 Starring Edith Evans and Eric Portman.

And more John Barry compositions including:
The James Bond films
From Russia with Love
1963 Directed by Terence Young. Starring Sean Connery, Daniella Bianchi and Lotte Lenya. Goldfinger
1964 Directed by Guy Hamilton. Starring Sean Connery, Honor Blackman and Shirley Eaton. Thunderball
1965 Directed by Terence Young. Starring Sean Connery, Claudine Auger and Luciana Paluzzi.
On Her Majesty's Secret Service
1969 Directed by Peter Hunt. Starring George Lazenby, Diana Rigg and use Steppat. Diamonds are Forever
1971 Directed by Guy Hamilton. Starring Sean Connery, Jill St John and Charles Grey.

Born Free
1965 Directed by James Hill. Starring Virginia McKenna.

The Knack
1965 Directed by Richard Lester. Starring Rita Tushingham and Michael Crawford.

Midnight Cowboy
1969 Directed by John Schlesinger. Starring Jon Voight and Dustin Hoffman.

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
1972 Directed by William Sterling. Starring Fiona Fullerton and Hywel Bennett.

1963 Directed by Cy Endfield. Starring Stanley Baker, Jack Hawkins and Michael Caine.

The Persuaders and The Adventurer: Themes from the TV series.

Mary Queen of Scots
1971 Directed by Charles Jarrott. Starring Vanessa Redgrave and Glenda Jackson.

The Quiller Memorandum
1966 Directed by Michael Anderson. Starring George Segal and Alec Guinness.

Research: Tony Rayns Production: Brian Eastman

Source: Geoff Leonard

Filmharmonic '72
added January 30, 2010

Born Free
The Knack
Midnight Cowboy
The Lion in Winter

Suite - Alice's Adventures in Wonderland: Curiouser and Curiouser, I've never been this far before, The Me I Never Knew

The Big Country

TV Themes including The Persuaders, The Adventurers

Mary, Queen of Scots
The Quiller Memorandum
The Concert James Bond: James Bond Theme, From Russia With Love, Thunderball, 007,
You Only Live Twice, O.H.M.S.S., Diamonds are Forever


This was one half (the second) of the concert, the first half being music composed and conducted by Miklos Rozsa.

Source: Geoff Leonard

The Concert John Barry

Friday, 29 January 2010 13:01

"Being one of the lucky ones, I attended the 1972 Filmharmonic Concert at RAH that this album was based on. More...

Prior to the album being released, Gordon Gray, who was A&R man at Polydor and in charge of the albums release, advised me over the phone that the arrangement of 'Zulu' played in the concert - much more dramatic and vibrant than the original, togeher with 'The Knack' and 'ipcress' were 'on the list' for inclusion on the album. Alas, they never made it.

So, I presume they are gathering dust somewhere, possibly never to be heard................ unless, of course Sony (Universal, ed.) have access to ALL the tracks recorded for the album and include them, but I'm not holding my breath!!"

Source: Ian MacDonald, John Barry Yahoo group.

Travels with Charlie

Thursday, 19 February 2015 12:23

Travels with Charlie

Barry bought the rights and planned to act as composer/producer with segments to be directed by people like Kevin C. I seem to recall that Jim Wilson might have been a co-producer? Not sure! Barry publicised this quite a lot in the sweep of post-Dances popularity but (obviously) it never arrived.

The Jam

Thursday, 19 February 2015 12:23

The Jam

Barry bought the rights and planned to act as composer/producer.

The Incredibles

Thursday, 19 February 2015 12:22

The Incredibles

Worked on this for some time but apparently the studio did not agree with his take. There seems to have been a misunderstanding as director Brad Bird hired him on the basis that he would write a score which was a pastiche of his James Bond scores.  Barry had no intention of scoring it that way and even his trailer music was replaced by a real Bond theme - OHMSS!  They could not agree and Barry left.

Composer: Michael Giacchino

Thomas and the Magic Railroad

Thursday, 19 February 2015 12:21

Thomas and the Magic Railroad

Barry was initially very enthusiastic about this (his son was a big fan of the stories) and wrote several songs with Don Black. However, he eventually decided the film was not going the way he had envisaged and left.

Composer: Hummie Mann

Tom's Midnight Garden

Thursday, 19 February 2015 12:20

Tom's Midnight Garden

Director Willard Carroll wanted Barry (him being a big fan), made one phone call just to check out availability but there was never any discussion beyond that.

Composer: Debbie Wiseman

Goodbye Lover

Thursday, 19 February 2015 12:19

Goodbye Lover

Wrote and recorded full score. However, the film's writer, Ron Peer, who was delighted that John was the composer, believes he did not want to "lighten" his score in certain places as required by the director during the editing process. Hence John Ottman was brought in to write a replacement score. It's worth noting that actress Ellen DeGeneres claimed that test audiences reacted badly to the film originally ending with her character being killed, so she was called back to re-shoot the ending.

Composer: John Ottman

Page 85 of 90

Latest Releases

  • Sourced from pristine LP
  • Improved sound quality.


Windmill Publications

windmill publications 1

Specialising in book publications and CD releases about John Barry and our book "Hit ans Miss: The Story of The John Barry Seven.

PIA website

Have a look at our old "Play It Again" label website here.

Play It Again Records CD catalogue offered the discerning listener a wide choice of digitally re-mastered recordings from film and television, and rare collections of work from the likes of Don Black and Ron Grainer.


Geoff Leonard writes CD booklet notes, articles, and occasionally books, in partnership with Pete Walker. You can read more about this here:


Lots of CD's, LPs, cassettes for sale, new and used. Decent prices.

Gareth Bramley's Aladdin's cave of television and film themes; the ones you missed and the ones you need.

Contact the JB site

If you wish to send an email, for example with content for the website, please contact Geoff Leonard:

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Bristol, UK

Geoff (owner) and Ruud (webmaster) have been running the John Barry website since June 18, 2001.

This website is not endorsed by the composer's family.
Use of copyrighted materials and logos are for promotional purposes only.

All files on this website are for personal use only and cannot be bought or sold.


big screen hits s

Plays 007 s

Our other sites

Geoff Leonard writes CD booklet notes, articles, and occasionally books, in partnership with Pete Walker. You can read more about this here:


Some albums

Golfinger French s

Best Of Bond s

Bond US 10th Anniversary s

John Barry related Events or Concerts

Submit your Event or Concert, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. We will not be responsible for any errors or inaccuracies.

A lot more James Bond concerts collected on the link below, I have put them all in this news item. So check it out from there!