On Air Now
Smooth Classics with Margherita Taylor 10pm - 1am
The James Bond movies have given us some of the most memorable movie music of all time, and now they're celebrating their 50th birthday with Global James Bond Day today! John Barry, Michael Kamen, Monty Norman and David Arnold all make appearances in our fantastic list which is strictly For Your Ears Only!
Where it all began! Monty Norman's theme has remained the musical constant across all the Bond movies, and is as iconic as the spy himself.
Not only is this one of the most controversial Bond films (George Lazenby's only Bond performance is still debated fiercely to this day), but it also contains some of John Barry's most accessible and enjoyable music.
Equal amounts cool and thrusting excitement, this is Bond through and through. John Barry knew the drill by this point, and it shows in this brassy score.
Another John Barry masterpiece that's as much a pop song as it is a piece of orchestral indulgence. Just try and stop yourself from singing along.
Marvin Hamlisch sadly passed away recently, but it means that there's a renewed interest in his music, not least the gorgeous orchestral lushness of his score for The Spy Who Loved Me.
The Bond franchise carried on experimenting with different composers, this time enlisting Bill Conti to bring the requisite epic cool to proceedings.
The legendary John Barry was, by this Roger Moore vehicle's 1985 release, firmly back in the saddle when it came to Bond scores. At times this is some of Barry's most delicate writing, full of intimate flute melodies and gentle accompaniment.
John Barry's final Bond score from 1987 is far more fondly remembered than the film itself which is where many aficionados believe the Timothy Dalton Bond movies started to go downhill.
It's perhaps surprising to note that soundtrack legend Michael Kamen was behind one of the lesser-known Bond scores. The franchise was in something of a rut by this point, but Kamen's music still has plenty of thrills and spills to make it stand alone.
David Arnold's first James Bond score was Pierce Brosnan's second outing as the shaken-not-stirred spy, and he reflected the modern Bond with an orchestral score that drew on Monty Norman's original and some electronic elements.
Arnold continued to show everyone what an accomplished movie composer he is and take Bond into the 21st century with Daniel Craig's first outing as Bond. Lush, emotional and surprisingly romantic at times, this is a thoroughly modern and complex musical portrait of the spy.
The latest Bond soundtrack is to be handled for the first time by Thomas Newman, who previously cut his teeth on films like American Beauty and Road To Perdition, both directed by Sam Mendes. It's perhaps an unsurprising choice then, as Mendes is the director of Skyfall too.