Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Instrumentals with Vocals

Instrumentals used to be commonplace on the pop charts. They started to disappear in the early '80s, right around the time MTV and kareoke started getting popular. This was also the time when movie soundtracks went from orchestrated set pieces to collections of songs (Flashdance started the trend, and The Bodyguard put the nail in the coffin). Sure, composers are still cranking out full scores, but how many of them do you hear on the radio?

The '60s were the heyday of instrumental hits, and a lot of them came from movies. Here are two that are instantly recognizable. Ennio Morricone's score for The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly features whistling (another lost art), wordless grunts, and amazing surf guitar. Francis Lai's theme to Un Homme Et Une Femme (A Man And A Woman) isn't technically an instrumental, but the vocals are just nonsense syllables, so it's close enough.

The movies are pretty good too.

Ennio Morricone - The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly (Main Title)

Francis Lai - A Man And A Woman


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