Monty Norman: James Bond theme

Dr No James Bond Sean Connery Monty Norman

The most famous guitar riff in cinema has featured in every official Bond film since Dr. No (1962), when it accompanied the opening title. It appeared again over the opening credits for From Russia with Love (1963) and was then used as music over the end credits for Thunderball (1965), On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969), The World Is Not Enough (1999), Casino Royale (2006), Quantum of Solace (2008), and Skyfall (2012).

The guitar riff heard in the original recording of the theme was played by Vic Flick on a 1939 English Clifford Essex Paragon Deluxe guitar plugged into a Vox AC15 amplifier. He was paid a one-off fee of £6 for recording the riff. 

Norman claims that the riff was inspired by a song 'Good Sign Bad Sign' sung by characters in his musical, A House for Mr Biswas , set among the Indian community of Trinidad.

More than 70 cover versions of the piece have been recorded by artists, including Count Basie, Glen Campbell and Hank Marvin.