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Beginners Theme Song

Here is a magical little video that Brian Reitzell made of Dave Palmer practicing our movie’s theme song. The original score work, "Beginners Suite,” was a true collaboration, mostly between Dave Palmer and Roger Neill, with Brian Reitzell and myself on the sidelines pointing this way and that. I remember trying to get something with the romanticism and dreaminess of a Georges Delerue score, but building it with the more simple notes and harmonies of Jelly Roll Morton's “Buddy Bertrand's Blues.” I don't know if this really made any sense to Dave and Roger, but it was a great experience watching them try things, taking turns on the piano, each suggesting this note and not that one, a real transformative blend of Dave's deep knowledge of blues piano and Roger's classical ear, with Brain's great instincts as all-around band leader and producer. We recorded on a beautiful old Bluezner stand-up piano that was a favorite of Henry Mancini's. Once we had the Beginners Theme the other score work, Anna's song and “I Want To Be Here” flowed out of the chords and feelings, somewhat broken but hopeful, that we had established in those first sessions.

I’m so happy that our original score, along with a lot of amazing songs by Jelly Roll Morton, Hoagy Carmichael, Josephine Baker, some guy named Johann Sebastian Bach and more are available on the Relativity soundtrack (link). They even made 12” vinyl.

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