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The music of James Bond – what’s your all time favourite?

Written by on 6th October 2021

by Gareth P

At Leighton Buzz radio we’re really glad to see James Bond returning to the cinema with the launch of ‘No Time To Die’, the 26th James Bond film.

By NYTrotter – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=5275996

James Bond’s music has always been an integral part of the films, yet receives far less attention than the films’ action sequences. You know you’re watching a bond film when the stylish title sequence plays to a classic and well loved bond song.

Looking back across the 26 films (we’re not including 1983’s ‘Never Say Never Again’ as it’s not an official bond film) there’s a bevy of phenomenal artist voicing their vocals like:
Shirley Bassey
Tom Jones
Nancy Sinatra
Louis Armstrong
Paul McCartney and Wings
Lulu
Duran Duran
A-ha
Tina Turner
Madonna
Jack White and Alicia Keys
Adele
Sam Smith
Billie Ellish

Shirley Bassey is a notable artist, as she’s sung the most bond songs Shirley’s vocals can be heard on the follow three movies:
Goldfinger
Diamonds are Forever
Moonraker

Typically the song takes on the name of the film, but not always. Notable exceptions are:
“We have all the time on the world” from “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service”
“Nobody does it better” from “The Spy Who Loved Me”
“All Time High” from “Octopussy”
“You Know My Name” from “Casino Royale”
“Another Way to Die” from “Quantum of Solace”
“Writing’s on the Wall” from “Spectre”

The franchise has always favoured solo artists over bands, with only 4 of the 26 films having a song performed by a band (Wings, A-ha, Duran Duran and Garbage).

As bond has changed with the times so has the music. Goldeneye hit our screens in 1995 and ended a 6 year gap in the franchise. While being more modern, Goldeneye has many nods to past Bond films including the main theme song performed by Tina Turner.

Moby’s also made a few Bond based tracks and there’s even a homage to the Bond films within the Trainspotting soundtrack. Within the soundtrack there is a track called “Closet Romantic” by Damon Albarn which lists the classic Bond films.

If you had to choose one that sums up what a Bond movie means to you, what would it be?


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