dimanche 25 mars 2012

Laurindo Almeida - Maracaibo (1958)

EM/f.PC/LP 0016
Real. Cornel Wilde
Mus. Laurindo Almeida

LP Decca Records VIM-7239 - Mono (JAP)

Side 1. 
1. Main Title : Maracaibo Moon (J.Pascal/L.Almeida) 
    Int. Jean Wallace  
2. Water Skiing – Guitar Solo  
3. Big Man from Texas – Guitar Solo  
4. Montage : Night Life in Caracas – Drums and Guitar Solo with Latin Combo  
5. Dawn Over The Lake – Guitar Solo  
6. Pretty Eyes and I Am Yours – Small Combo  
7. Not Afraid – Guitar Solo

Side 2. 
1. The Lady Exposed – Guitar Solo 
2. Montage #2 : Night Life in Maracaibo – Guitar Solo with Latin Combo 
3. Ave Maria – Guitar Solo (Schubert) 
4. Maracaibo Moon – Rhumba, Latin Combo  
5. Detonation – Two Guitars with Percussion  
6. True Confessions – Guitar Solo  
7. Finale and End Title – Guitar Solo

Notes Back Cover
Early in my preparation of the production of "Maracaibo", I began thinking about the kind of music the picture should have. Since the movie had a Latin-American background, Venezuela, with its fabulous cities of Caracas, Maracaibo, and the beach resort of Laguna at Macuto, I was determined from the outset to use the guitar as the principal musical instrument. I contacted Laurindo Almeida, who is not only one of the finest guitarists in the world, but also a gifted composer and arranger.
Almeida was immediately enthusiastic about the whole project. He suggested that in many portions of the score we should have two  and three guitars, and, as a result, we used very few instruments aside from the guitar; accordion, bass, trumpet, piano and drums. With these in various combinations, amazing effects were achieved in a score requiring enormous range of mood.
"Maracaibo Moon" is the theme song, which is used in several times in the movie and sung over the main titles by Jean Wallace, and is only one of several haunting melodies in the score. In "Maracaibo Moon" Almeida composed not only a very popular type of song, but also one which was adaptable for underscoring the story's moods. In the early water-skiing sequence, the lyrical, playful music of the two guitars is suddenly interrupted by a strain of "The Eyes Of Texas Are Upon You" as we see the brash Texan, Vic, fully clothed while water-skiing in pursuit of the beautiful Laura (Jean Wallace). The howls of laughter from the audiences are induced by the music as well as the situation.
For the love scene on the shore of Lake Maracaibo, with the tremendous oil fire reflected on the water, he wrote a completely new love theme. This love scene is one of the most sensuous ever seen on the screen; chiefly because it is played as it would happen in life, with very little dialogue, and I wanted the music to supplement the sounds of kissing, of breathing, of words smothered by kisses, and not to intrude on them. The music for this scene had to have strength, passion and warmth at the same time but when it was dubbed to the film it didn't quite fit; it was too dominant, too demanding of attention. I thought I would have to elimnate the music from that portion of the picture, but the next day, Laurindo was back with a composition which was exactly right; - a mounting, romantic melody, against a throbbing, pulse-quickening bass.
One of the most beautiful things I've ever heard is the rendition on the guitar of Schubert's Ave Maria, after the boy Lago is caught by the tremendous sheet of flame from the exploding oil well. There is no dialogue in the entire scene, for the guitar is the voice for Francis Lederer who plays the mute Orlando, in love with the constantly inconstant Elena (Abbe Lane).
In summing up, producing the picture "Maracaibo" was a very pleasant and rewarding experience. I humbly extend my warmest thanks to Jefferson Pascal, who wrote the lyrics, and to all of the splendid people who contributed so unselfishly of their time and efforts to the finished production. To composer Laurindo Almeida, I gratefully give the ears and the tail.

-Cornel Wilde

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