Monday, August 18, 2014

The James Bond Themes, Part Two

Here is the second part of our feature on the James Bond theme songs over the years:

1983:  Octopussy
 An underrated but fine Bond theme, "All Time High" was written by John Barry, Tim Rice, and Stephen Short, and sung by Rita Coolidge.  It peaked at #36 overall, but #1 on the more important Adult Contemporary chart.

1985:  A View to a Kill
  Duran Duran had the privilege of recording the theme song, taking it to #1 in the U.S. and #2 in the U.K.  The members of the group teamed with veteran John Barry to write the song.


1987:  The Living Daylights
     Barry and Pål Waaktaar wrote "The Living Daylights", with A-ha recording the song.  It peaked at #5 in the U.K. but did not chart in the United States.

1989:  Licence to Kill
  Narada Michael Walden, Jeffrey Cohen, and Walter Afanasieff wrote "Licence to Kill", sung by Gladys Knight.  It peaked at #6 in the U.K. but did not make the Top 100 in the U.S.

1995:  GoldenEye
  After a six-year layoff, Bond returned in GoldenEye.  Bono and the Edge of U2 wrote the song, while Eric Serra scored it.  Tina Turner took it to #10 in the U.K.

1997:  Tomorrow Never Dies
  Sheryl Crow wrote (along with Mitchell Froom) and sang this theme song, with David Arnold scoring it.  The song did not chart in the U.S., but did reach #12 in the U.K.

1999:  The World Is Not Enough
   David Arnold and Don Black wrote "The World Is Not Enough", with Garbage reaching #11 in the U.K.

2002:  Die Another Day
  Madonna and Mirwais Ahmadzai wrote "Die Another Day".  Madonna took the song to #3 in the U.K. and #8 in the U.S., the first Bond theme to reach the Top 10 on both sides of the Atlantic in 17 years.

2006:  Casino Royale
    David Arnold wrote "You Know My Name" for the movie.  Chris Cornell recorded it, reaching #7 in the U.K. but only #79 in the U.S.
2008:  Quantum of Solace
   Jack White wrote the theme, "Another Way To Die".  White and Alicia Keys recorded the song, reaching #9 in the U.K. and #81 in the U.S.

2012:  Skyfall
 It was one of the most anticipated of theme songs, because the artist set to record it, Adele, had just dominated the recent Grammy Awards.  Adele came through with another of the all-time best Bond themes.  "Skyfall" went to #2 in the U.K. and #8 in the United States.  Adele and Paul Epworth wrote the song, with Thomas Newman scoring it.  

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