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  • THE BIG COUNTRY [Soundtrack]
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THE BIG COUNTRY [Soundtrack]


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Editorial Reviews

Presenting the first ever official, studio-endorsed CD release of composer Jerome Moross' classic original score to the beloved 1958 MGM/UA epic western, THE BIG COUNTRY starring Gregory Peck, Carroll Baker, Charlton Heston, Burl Ives and Chuck Connors and directed by William Wyler. Digitally remastered from the original mono source and complimented with exclusive liner notes and official art, this special release of Moross' original score recording is limited to 3000 units. Wyler's powerful Western covers a lot of territory with Gregory Peck as a sea captain who travels west to marry and settle, but finds himself in the middle of a bitter dispute over water rights and a jealous clash with the ranch foreman (Charlton Heston). He also discovers his fiancee isn't who he imagined and finds true romance with the local schoolmistress (Jean Simmons). 1. Main Title (3:21) 2. Julie's House (2:10) 3. The Welcoming (3:09) 4. The Hazing (1:49) 5. Courtin'Time (1:21) 6. The Terrill Ranch (1:35) 7. Old Thunder (1:40) 8. The Raids - Pts. 1 & 2 (3:39) 9. McKay's Decision (1:03) 10. The Capture (1:28) 11. McKay's Triumph (0:35) 12. Major Terrill's Party (1:30) 13. Major Terrill's Party - Pt. 2 (1:09) 14. Waltz (2:16) 15. Polka (0:54) 16. Night In Blanco Canyon (0:52) 17. McKay's Ride (1:20) 18. McKay Is Missing (2:02) 19. The Old House (2:18) 20. Waiting (0:30) 21. Horror Stories (1:04) 22. Big Muddy (2:33) 23. Still Waiting (1:37) 24. McKay Alone (1:20) 25. Night At Ladder Ranch (1:09) 26. The Flight (2:54) 27. Cattle At The River (2:21) 28. Pat's Mistake (1:20) 29. Buck Comes For Julie (1:12) 30. The Abduction (1:10) 31. The Captive (1:34) 32. The Attempted Rape (2:10) 33. The War Party Gathers (2:39) 34. McKay In Blanco Canyon (2:27) 35. Jim And Julie (0:35) 36. The Major Alone (1:51) 37. The Duel (0:51) 38. The Death Of Buck Hannassey (2:44) 39. Ambush In Blanco Canyon - Pt. 1 (1:16) 40. Ambush In Blanco Canyon - Pt. 2 (1:47) 41. The Stalking (1:21) 42. End Title (1:59)

Product Details

  • Audio CD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: La La Land Records
  • ASIN: B00239KYX4
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #327,312 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By David Vickers. on February 11, 2010
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
The music from The Big Country was one of the first LP's I bought, when the movie was still a new release. I first heard it on a BBC radio programme called Two-Way Family Favourites, broadcast on Sunday lunchtime, which was a link between British forces serving abroad, and their families back home. I thought then, and I still think, that this is one of the all-time great film scores. From the now-familiar exhilarating opening, with it's swirling strings and brass fanfares, to the folksy interludes, the sheer rhythmic drive and marvellous orchestration points up and comments on the action on screen with masterly precision. It also stands up as a great listen in it's own right. The original LP was issued in mono, and later (re-recorded?) in stereo. I much prefer the sound on the mono version, which is the one on the CD in this review. The stereo always sounded to me to be too reveberant, as though recorded in a swimming-bath. Here we have a very clean, open sound, and there is a bite to the strings and the brass in the rhythmic passages which is very satisfying. In contrast to the 12 tracks on the original LP's, there are 42 tracks on this CD release. Elmer Bernstein's Magnificent Seven is always held up to be the quintessential Western soundtrack, but for my money, The Big Counry is at least it's equal. (Incidentally, Bernstein was a great admirer of the score.) This CD, the first official release, is the one I have been waiting for, and it has already spent more time in the player than on the shelf. Not mad about the cover art, though, (as an official 'collector's edition,' why not duplicate the original?) A minor point, perhaps. The bottom line - Forget the re-recordings, if you want the real McCoy, (or should that be McKay?) with the real feel of the movie, then this is it. Cover apart, highly recommended on all counts.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Dave K on September 18, 2010
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Jerome Moross's THE BIG COUNTRY is the western score to end all western scores. For its time, it is an unusual score in that many of its sequences almost play like music videos. You would not see visuals and music matched like this until Sergio Leone and Ennio Morricone achieved similar results in their spaghetti westerns.

The music for THE BIG COUNTRY jumped out at me when I saw the film on NBC in my junior high days back in the early 70's. I called every record store in town before eventually finding the UK Sunset Records import of the soundtrack on LP. This version contained only 12 tracks! Even worse, the score was in "reprocessed" or fake stereo. For those unfamiliar with that wretched technique, they would re-record an original mono source and funnel high-end sounds to one track and lower ones to the other to give an illusion of stereo. Clean mono is far preferable to fake stereo.

This version from La-La Land Records is in the original mono. It contains every cue composed by Moross for the film, including the ones that were not used in the final cut. One of my favorite moments in the film and score is the cue "The Terrill Ranch" where Peck surveys the grounds at the start of his first day at the ranch. It features a very noble slow statement of the main theme, with its distinctive bass line. This cue has never been available on a BIG COUNTRY (including the re-recorded version conducted by Tony Bremner) soundtrack before. I can see why some versions of the soundtrack leave off some cues, as the constant reiteration of themes can get to be repetitious. But it is nice to have all Moross's music here.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By mangiafrani on June 13, 2009
Format: Audio CD
Without a doubt one of the best western music scores ever written. Moross should have won "Best Score" Academy Award. Unfortunately the award went to Dimitri Tiomkin for "The Old Man And The Sea". Can you believe it? How many people have ever heard this score? It's not even around; but the "Big Country" is as popular and great as ever.
Make no mistake, "The Big Country" is an Aaron Copland style score. Filled with many Americana themes. This is a great score. Get it while it lasts.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 27, 2002
Format: Audio CD
This movie is a classic, and the music is outstanding. This would be a great buy for anyone who loves the big sound and swelling music of the fifties.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By PFK on May 2, 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I first found the LP to The Big Country in 1964. It's a fantastic film score, one of the best ever composed. The CD has a super sound quality and now is complete at nearly 80 minutes. It's in the class of SHANE, High Noon, The Magnificent Seven, How the West Was Won etc. A must for fans of golden age film scores. It's Jerome Moross' magnum opus! Just great!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Charles A. Christesson on February 28, 2011
Format: Audio CD
Melodically, harmonically, contrapuntally, there is abslolutely no one like the great Jerome Moross, especially in the composing of Americana. And this mighty score is his magnum opus. It has a majesty, a poignancy, a sense of fun unmatched by any other movie score. It's as if the the Lord himself had set the American West to music.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Marklee on January 29, 2013
Format: Audio CD
I AM A HUGE FAN OF THIS SCORE. PREVIOUS REVIEWERS ARE ABSOLUTELY RIGHT. LATER STEREO RECORDINGS INCLUDING JUST THE MAIN TITLE PALE IN COMPARISON. DITTO ON CD ART. SHOULD HAVE BEEN THE ORIGINAL BLAZING SUN RIDERS ALBUM ART. ONLY TIME I HAVE SEEN A MONO VERSION BETTER STEREO.WE NEED A NEW RE-RECORDING BY NICK RAINE CONDUCTING THE CITY OF PRAGUE ORCHESTRA.
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