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Jonathan Livingston Seagull: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack Soundtrack

4.8 out of 5 stars 177 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Soundtrack, October 25, 1990
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Editorial Reviews

This 1973 soundtrack soared to #2 on the charts, while its parent film flopped at the box office. It remains on of Neil's finest achievements with it's rich orchestral score and sensitive ballads like Be and Skybird
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 25, 1990)
  • Original Release Date: October 23, 1973
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Soundtrack
  • Label: Columbia
  • Run Time: 120 minutes
  • ASIN: B00000251N
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (177 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #64,030 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
My brother introduced me to this record just after it was first released some 28 years ago. I can remember the occasion as if it were yesterday. I was sleeping late on a Saturday morning and I was awakened by music echoing through the house. Music that was haunting, expressive, flowing. Words that were insightful, thoughtful, introspective and, most of all, moving.
Eventually, I got up and went downstairs to find out what I had been listening to, and I discovered that it was Jonathan Livingstone Seagull by Neil Diamond. Well, I was captivated; truly, deeply captivated. I'd rarely heard such rich, wonderfully expressive modern music before. Yes, I knew of Neil Diamond, but this record made me see and hear him in a new light.
I bought the album and wore it out after many playings over many years. I've seen the film so many times I've lost count, but one thing still gives me shivers as I watch it is the combination of absolutely superb photography matched to the superlative soundtrack. I cannot understand how, in Britain at least, this film got relegated to art-house status and didn't get the wide release it dererves.
Even today (now I have the CD) I find that in troubled times I can darken my lounge, lie back in my favourite chair, listen to this music and feel my worries subside. It is so relaxing.
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Format: Audio CD
It's hard for me to be objective about this album. I'm not much of a Neil Diamond fan personally. And time has not improved how I feel about his voice. However, when I was in 3rd grade, I had a teacher who attempted to teach a bit of musical appreciation...and played this album for us. I was beyond moved. It made me realize what music can do in terms of setting moods and such. I was hooked. Much begging of my parents and I was soon wearing out my own copy. I still have it 21 years later. And thru this I was introduced to my favorite book. Naturally as I got older I moved away from it. Neil just wasn't too cool anymore. As I was packing to move recently, I unearthed my tattered vinyl copy of this & for laughs put it on. My laughs ended....the music still had the power to transport me. And I truely understood how trancendent the music is. The lush arraingements still moved me. I ordered a cd copy before side one had finished. My only complaint: The original album was beautiful in it's packaging...a wonderful book with stunning photos (which made the movie look real dull in retrospect). Nowhere to be found now. That and it could really use a remastered version. It sounds good, but it could be better. This is the original "new-age" album, in my opinion. Beautiful, haunting, spiritual. "Transcend...purify...glorius".
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Format: Audio CD
Songs from this album were played at my mom's second marriage 30 years ago. Yesterday, selections were played at her funeral. She wore out her album several times and finally got it on CD. The music ands songs are as relevant today as they were 30 years ago.
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Format: Audio CD
When I was about 7 or 8 my father introduced me to this album, after he saw the movie, and I fell in love with it instantly. The music and the words make you feel a kind of exuberant joy from the inside out, and you feel like soaring with each note, just like Jonathan. The words, message, and music are powerful. After our family dog "ate" our vinyl copy in the mid 80's I thought I'd never find another copy, but here it is on CD. Hearing the soundclips brought tears to my eyes, for all the memories they evoked. I highly recommend this, if you want to be inspired and uplifted in the best musical way.
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Format: Audio CD
I freely admit to being one of the millions of Neil Diamond fans out there, so that may cast me into the "uncool" category in some circles. But even the cynic cannot logically argue that Neil Diamond is one of the best songwriters and live performers of the last half-century. From the songwriting standpoint, "Jonathan Livingston Seagull" is one of the highlights of Diamond's career.
I read the Richard Bach book upon which the movie (which I never saw) and this soundtrack were based. However, one really needn't be familiar with the book or movie to follow along with the music on this disc. Neil Diamond arranges this music perfectly along the story of this gull's spiritual journey.
Diamond manages to capture this spirituality in the music of "Jonathan Livingston Seagull", which gives the listener a relaxing and poignant - if not also emotional - experience rarely found on one disc. Coming in the midst of Diamond's maturity as a songwriter and composer, "JLS" speaks as much to Diamond's personal evolution as it does about the seagull he writes about.
The tracks incorporates wonderful orchestral arrangements into the mostly acoustic/piano-driven music. "Be" is a classic song that speaks to the question of spiritual fulfillment. The tandem of "Dear Father" and "Lonely Looking Sky" are the emotional anchors of this disc, reflecting the gull's arrival at "rock-bottom" desperation. "Skybird", the most up-tempo track here, is uplifting in its lyrical sense of resurrection and hope. In between are many instrumentals which combine portions of these songs. Some may find these to be repetitive and redundant, but are wonderful in carrying the mood and bridging the various chapters in the gull's story.
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