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The Waltons — Part 1: Music

I have just started watching Season 1 of The Waltons again, after so many years. I don’t know how many parts this series will have, but that’s OK.

From The Waltons website:

You may not know his name or recognize his face but you surely know his music. Jerry Goldsmith is the composer of The Walton’s theme.

Born in Los Angeles, California, on February 10, 1929, Jerrald Goldsmith would become one of Hollywood’s best-known and prolific film composers. He studied piano with Jacob Gimpel and theory and counterpoint with Mario Castelnuovo-tedesco. He also attended classes in film composition given by Miklos Roza at the University of Southern California. In 1950, he was employed as a clerk typist in the music department at CBS. Here he was given his first assignments as a composer for radio shows such as “Romance” and “CBS Radio Workshop.” He wrote one score a week for these shows that were performed live. He stayed with CBS until 1960, having already scored “The Twilight Zone.” He was hired by Revue Studios to score their Thriller Series. It was here that Jerry met the influential film composer Alfred Newman who hired him to score the film “Lonely Are The Brave” (1963). This was his first major film.

Mr. Goldsmith has scored over 150 films including:”A Patch of Blue,” “The Sand Pebbles,” “Planet of the Apes,” “Papillon,” “Alien,” “Patton,” “Poltergeist,” “Total Recall,” “The Russia House” “The River Wild,” “Dennis The Menace,” “City Hall,” “Congo,” “First Knight,” “Chain Reaction” and “Executive Decision.”

His TV credits include the themes for “Star Trek: Voyager,” “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” “Medical Story,” “Barnaby Jones,” “Police Story” and, of course, “The Waltons.”

Mr. Goldsmith constantly pushed forward the bounds of music. In “Planet of the Apes” he included horns blown without mouthpieces and a bass clarinetist fingering the notes but not blowing. He was not afraid to use the wide variety of electronic sounds available to modern composers. His music spans five decades. In 1976, he won an Academy Award for “The Omen” and he received 15 additional Academy Award nominations, five Emmy Awards, seven Golden Globe Nominations and seven Grammy nominations. Jerry Goldsmith died on July 23, 2004

18 thoughts on “The Waltons — Part 1: Music

  1. That theme is as important as the characters. What a resume that he has…I really like the first season because it adds that guitar at the first of the intro that they cut off in the other seasons.
    Someone should do an all Walton’s blog.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Great post by the way…I watched one last night. The one where John Boy gets his car.

        I’ll look for those…one that I learned some info from a different view point is from a director that directed a few of them among others.


        Liked by 1 person

  2. I spent a lot of time at my grandparents growing up and my grandma loved The Waltons and Little House On The Prairie. While I would find something to do when Little House was on- I’d always watch The Walton’s with her. The way she talked about her family growing up always made me feel like it was a lot like The Walton’s. The show was consistently good until John Boy left the show. I see it is on ME TV I may have to start watching again too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My maternal grandma grew up in a lumber camp up north and had her fair share of stories to tell. My grandma was a lot like Grandma Walton (or a cross between her and Granny from the Beverly Hillbillies) but unfortunately my mom was nothing like Olivia Walton. Yes, you may have to give it another watch if you have access.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I am glad I wasn’t drinking anything when I read that comment about your grandma being a cross between Grandma Walton and Granny Clampett! .. I will either DVR it on ME TV or order the seasons through the library system- I know our library has season 1…… the other day someone donated the entire Little House On The Prairie….

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Cool! Not sure how many seasons our library has of The Waltons. I remember Little House and watched it but not sure I’d want to watch it again. The Waltons is so packed full of humanity that I can only take watching 1 episode at a time. Emotional overload and I’m going through the kleenex at an alarming rate 😉

          Liked by 1 person

          1. I think I agree with you- The Walton’s not made for binge watching.. of course one of the things even as a kid that I liked about The Walton’s is that John Boy was an aspiring writer. …. meant to ask- did you ever get the remaining discs of the Ken Burns Country Music?

            Liked by 1 person

            1. Yes, I like John Boy as a writer and I love Earl Hamner narrating. It gives such authenticity to the show. No, I haven’t gotten those other discs yet. I think I learned that those first ones are the only ones they have in BluRay, but they have the whole series together in DVD. I will get to them.

              Liked by 1 person

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