6. The Man With The Golden Gun (from The Man With The Golden Gun) – Lulu
Most people hate this one with a passion, but it’s easily one of the most catchy, fun, energetic Bond songs. It’s funky with a rock and disco manic edge, great guitars, a blistering performance by Lulu. We even get a bizarre, soft, slow brief break in the middle where Lulu does a Bassey for a few moments. I’ve never quite understood why people, or so many people despise this – it hits all the right notes in my ears. I love love love each ‘golden shot’ that she sings, great stuff. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PSbj2Mx2By8
5. For Your Eyes Only (from For Your Eyes Only) – Sheena Easton
I’ve always had a soft spot for this one, partly because it’s from one of my favourite films in the series, and partly because I’m a sucker for ballads. It may get awfully cheesy, but it still does the job for me. This one also gets deathly close to being dated due to the instrumentation. But it’s just so lovely and so tragic. The film begins with Bond visiting the grave of his dead wife, we see one of the series’ most brutal killers dispatch a number of other likeable characters, and a rare somber turn by Moore. I love the verse and bridge, but I feel the chorus vocals could have been reined in a little, or would be better with a different singer. I’d love to hear some covers of this – I’m sure I’d love it even more if sung by one of my favourite singers. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fN1WBgS9u_E
4. Nobody Does It Better (from The Spy Who Loved Me) – Carly Simon
Beginning like a forgotten ballad by Queen, Simon again may not have been the best choice to perform this, but aside from that it’s a superb song and close to stealing that definitive Bond song crown. Naturally Radiohead’s version is better, but the song itself it so good that you’d be hard pushed to find a bad version of it. Again it’s super sexy, I love the combination of piano and violin, and it’s one of the few Bond songs that doesn’t have the typical blasts of string and horn – and doesn’t miss them for a second. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PNA7DcVppEs Radiohead bonus: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mfmQe_eBvrc
Let us know below what you think of these Bond songs as I rarely see two of these in other lists of favourites.
Official Nominations: We May Never Love Like This Again (The Towering Inferno). Benji’s Theme (Benji). Blazing Saddles (Blazing Saddles). Wherever Love Takes Me (Gold). Little Prince (The Little Prince).
Even though rock music was at a peak and edging deeper into realms of success, the genre never really translated to movie songs, at least from The Academy’s perspective. And so we have, still to this day, ballads and pop and the occasional slice of ‘foreign tinted’ stuff. We May Never Love Like This Again feels like a watered down Motown ballad – it has some of that style of arrangement but while also evoking the style of an older era. The song is performed with gusto, my only problem with the vocals are when they double up on the harmonies unnecessarily. It’s a pretty plain song, and if you heard it on the radio you’d forget it instantly. It’s a weird one for a disaster movie too, but then I’m not sure what sort of song would work.
Benji’s Theme from Benji is suitably happy, but is quite a weird song – it has country vocals and a light and breezy pop tone with some nice bass and organ work. It’s perfectly fine but again it’s hardly what you would consider a smash hit or amazing song. Blazing Saddles of course has plenty of whips and typical Western sounds – Frankie Laine apparently wasn’t aware it was a spoof. The song works on its own, the lyrics aren’t overtly funny or anything. Maureen McGovern is back again for Gold with Wherever Loves Takes Me. Again it’s well sung and you’d be forgiven for thinking it’s the same song as the one from The Towering Inferno. The Little Prince is one of those too smooth songs that I won’t like. It’s nice, gentle, inoffensive, but instantly forgettable.
My Winner: Benji’s Theme
My Nominations: The Man With The Golden Gun. Dark Star. Buster And Billie. Foxy Brown. Thunderbolt and Lightfoot.
The Man With The Golden Gun is generally seen by Bond fans as one of the worst Bond songs. I’m on the opposing side and feel it is one of the best. Carpenter’s Dark Star isn’t the best movie but it does have a pretty funny song which works well alongside the antics. On its own and feels like a badly sung country song, yet it works. Also annoyingly sung is the theme song for Buster And Billie – yet again it works within the confines of the film. Willie Hutch’s soundtrack to Foxy Brown is great, but hardly expands upon what had been done in Shaft and the like. I do like the idea of having a song where women are sighing ‘coochie coochie’ in the background getting nominated, so I’ll go for Give Me Some Of That Good Old Love. Finally Where Do I Go From Here although from 1974, is well used in Thunderbolt And Lightfoot. Weirdly it’s yet another one which is annoyingly sung. What’s going on??
My Winner: The Man With The Golden Gun
Let us know in the comments which song gets your vote as winner!