Your musician friends are right - it is a bit off-tune. By design.
John Williams addressed this in an interview, and it was indeed done on purpose - to imitate the way the live music would sound in 1930s bar. See the bolded text especially:
JW: The cantina music is an anomaly, it sticks out entirely as an unrelated rib to the score. There's a nice little ...
According to Weird Al's interview on TheForce.Net, he managed to gather most of the advance intelligence from the Internet:
The song was entirely based on Internet "rumors." I gathered all the
leaked info I could about the movie from all the various Star Wars
websites (TheForce.net was particularly helpful), and was able to
piece together the basic ...
It's a Theremin.
The theremin is associated with a very eerie sound, which has led to its use in movie soundtracks such as Miklós Rózsa's for Spellbound and The Lost Weekend and Bernard Herrmann's for The Day the Earth Stood Still and as the theme tune for the ITV drama Midsomer Murders.
Here's a video of the inventor using it.
It's a really cool ...
The first two lines should be pretty obvious; Kirk is the captain, and can definitely hold his own in a fight.
The third line is a reference to "The City on the Edge of Forever", which involved Kirk, Spock, and McCoy travelling back in time to 19301. Joan Collins guest-starred as Edith Keeler, a woman of the time who Kirk falls in love with. Although it won'...
Billy Murray - Come Take a Trip in my Airship (1905)
The Billboard 100 didn't exist at the time of its release, but from the small amount of information I can find online, I understand that this was a popular phonograph recording. Certainly Billy Murray was a very popular artist at that time, but I don't have hard ...
Joss Whedon wrote the theme song, which is called The Ballad of Serenity. But I have found nothing official that explicitly states a meaning behind the song.
The Battle of Serenity Valley was an important battle the Browncoats lost, in the Unification War. It was literally where they could not hold their position, or 'stand'.
I believe the first verse is '...
Donald Swann's settings of a number of Tolkien's songs, "The Road Goes Ever On", were written with Tolkien's approval and input. I think they're probably about as close to "official" as you can hope for.
From John Williams his own liner notes for the original SW OST.
"For "Ben‘s Death" I used part of the Princess Theme in the beginning. l felt it had the most sweeping melody of all the themes in the score. This wildly romantic music in this tragic setting represents Luke's and the Princess' reaction to leaving Ben behind."
The Black Sabbath song was an original composition by the band based on the concept of someone who travelled in time back from the future, but was turned to immobile steel upon arrival. It just happened to share a name with the Marvel comics character, who is not generally regarded as a time traveller or immobile (although he has probably had adventures ...
There are a few examples of in-universe music in the films and the Rebels tv show (unsure if there are examples in Clone Wars but I would suspect there are)
The band in the Mos Eisley cantina plays at least two songs that are heard on screen:
- Cantina Band (in-universe title "Mad About Me")
An artist is unlikely to give a “one true interpretation” of their work, and I am aware of no official statements as to the specific meaning of any aspect of the song, this line or any other, and I strongly suspect there isn’t and won’t be any. CR Drost has found a partial quote indicating that there is possibly some discussion of the song, but it is very ...
According to Wookieepedia, referenced to Star Wars Rebels, the answer is yes:
The Imperial anthem was a patriotic musical piece adopted by the Galactic Empire. During Empire Day parades, an upbeat version of the anthem was played, representing everything that the Empire stood for. By 3272 LY, on the Outer Rim planet of Lothal, the Imperial anthem was also ...
Nils Lofgren sang
I'm gonna take you to see Star Wars tonight
on the live version of Take you to the Movies on the album Night After Night.
The Discogs page says that the record was released in 1977. It doesn't mention a recording date.
It's likely a continuity error on the part of the film makers.
As a parent to a saxophone player, I can attest that it is universally impossible for any person to blow into a saxophone and not have some sort of sound come out. Saxophones are very loud in person. Very.
TL;DR: I can think of two early Science Fiction songs - one made the Hot 100 charts; the other predates the Hot 100 charts, but was recorded by one of the most successful musicians of the early 20th century. Purple People Eater by Sheb Wooley, and Two Little Men in a Flying Saucer by Ella Fitzgerald.
Purple People Eater by Sheb Wooley
This one ...
The song is a reference to Frodo's quest to return the One Ring. The girl mentioned in the lyrics of Ramble On, as well as Over the Hills and Far Away is the One Ring.
Other Led Zeppelin songs, such as The Battle of Evermore make strong references to Tolkien's work, as they were a strong influence on Robert Plant.
Here's a pretty good write up of the Led ...
Ozzy discusses the meaning of the song, and the posted answer above is true. Fast forward to around 22:50 in the interview:
Question: What's the real story behind Iron Man?
Ozzy: Well, it was Geezer Butler, the bass player of Sabbath who brought me the lyric. And what it was about, was a guy who travels through time, ...
The story is Unaccompanied Sonata, by Orson Scott Card. I have it in Card's Maps in a Mirror collection.
The story, as you remembered well, is about a musical prodigy who is isolated at an early age, allowed only to listen to the sounds of nature so as not to be tainted by existing music. His "fantastic instrument", as you say, is referred to only as The ...
According to this that would be Chopin's Nocturne Op.72 No.1 in E minor.
It was the first nocturne he composed (1827) but it was not published until 1855. With "only" 57 bars it is rather short, since it's played in Andante (~70 bpm)
It was not only used in that episode but also in the movie "Tombstone" and as the main theme in "The Secret Garden".
He has been recorded singing some of the songs, see for example here. Two albums were released on vinyl, I was lucky enough to have a friend whose mother owned them.
See also this YouTube video of the Tolkien singing 'Troll Sat Alone On His Seat Of Stone'.
Edit: Reading Tolkien's Beowulf and the accompanying commentary by Christopher Tolkien, it turns out ...
No, Tolkien himself conceded he had "little musical knowledge" in Letter 260:
I have little musical knowledge. Though I come of a musical family, owing to defects of
education and opportunity as an orphan, such music as was in me was submerged (until I married a musician), or transformed into linguistic terms. Music gives me great pleasure and sometimes
I believe you are referring to a theremin.
Here is the inventor demonstrating one.
They can be used to make a fairly wide variety of interesting sounds, and were used in quite a number of movies for both sound tracks and special effects.
Miklós Rózsa is said to have pioneered the use of the theremin in Hollywood musical scores.
Here are some more ...
Well, I found this Reddit thread in which Mr. Djawadi answers (kind of) a similar question:
Auren91 : Hello Mr. Djawadi! Just curious here, in which language the choir
sings "Mhysa" and "The Children"? Is valyrian? And where is possible
to find the lyrics (and translation)?
rdjawadi : They are Valyrian-influenced.
Since the composer did not ...
Music from the Star Wars films with vocal elements:
I - The Phantom Menace
Duel of the Fates - Epic choral music during the duel between, Obi-Wan, Qui-Gon, and Darth Maul on Naboo. From Wikipedia:
Featuring choral interjections derived from the archaic Celtic poem "Cad Goddeu" ("Battle of the Trees") translated into Sanskrit, the theme is used to ...
Interesting - I wasn't aware of that poem. I don't know, however, that the theme song has any inspiration in ancient myth or poetry. I'd always taken it as having a double reference/meaning. The first is a reference to the fact that humanity had destroyed "Earth that was" and their only way to escape was to the sky/space.
The second inspiration is that ...
I've always felt that they were trying to distance themselves from the geeky/trekkie image of the rest of the franchise in order to attract a larger and younger audience. TV dramas had already begun adopting pop/rock songs as their theme songs, and Star Trek ratings were stagnating, with many people feeling that TV viewers were getting sick of Star Trek and ...
Bill Murray sang the Star Wars theme during The January 28th, 1978 episode of Saturday Night Live. The episode included a sketch with Bill Murray playing Nick the Lounge Singer, a parody of a lounge singer. The sketch opens with Nick singing the theme to 2001: A Space Odyssey. Nick goes on to schmooze with the audience, sing bits of other songs, interview ...