Great British TV Themes

Musical Score By: Various Artists

Distributed by: Silva Screen Records

Reviewed by Melissa Minners


            When one thinks of British television, they donít always realize that a great many American shows got their start on British TV.  Some shows have come to the states in their original British format like The Benny Hill Show, while still others, like Big Brother, have received the Americanized treatment.  In November 2010, Silva Screen Records released a collection of British television music entitled Great British TV Themes.

            This two-CD set spans the history of British television music from the years 1957 through 2006.  Containing fifty tracks of music, this collection contains some of the most memorable TV themes in British television history.  Who can forget the sci-fi/action feel of the Dr. Who theme, the jazzy trumpet fanfare of The Saint, the upbeat, wonky horns in the theme from The Benny Hill Show, the funky synthesizers and guitars of Danger Man, the adventurous air of Space 1999, the sultry, sexy tones of the theme from The New Avengers and more. 

            The music found in this collection are performed by a variety of artists including London Music Works, The Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra, The City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra, The London Ensemble, The Philharmonic Orchestra and more.  Some of the theme music actually contained songs with lyrics, such as Red Dwarf, Fireball XL-5, The Protectors and more.  These songs are re-recorded by Keith Ferreira.

            What is always interesting about collections like these is the change in the style of music that can be witnessed over the years.  Depending on what style is hot during that era - whether it be jazz, funk, synthesizers, rock, disco - the eraís musical style is reflected in its television themes.  The themes become more complex as we get to the 1990s and 2000s, taking on new tones and nuances.

            This 2-CD set features quite an interesting array of music and will be a terrific gift for any fan of British television.  With fifty tracks of music, the album is a steal at the $25.00 US digital download price.  Check out Great British TV Themes for a walk down British television history lane.


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