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*** 1/2

Album running time

1: Main Title (2:24)
2: The Execution (2:22)
3: Sunday Dinner (2:08)
4: The Empty Room (1:47)
5: Lila and Helen (3:40)
6: Party Boy (3:23)
7: A Mother's Worry (2:14)
8: Job Hunting (1:17)
9: The Classroom (2:33)
10: The Dancing Lesson (3:01)
11: The Birthday Present (2:01)
12: Lila's Confession (1:16)
13: The New Job (2:41)
14: Comfort for Lila (1:51)
15: A Change of Heart (3:11)
16: Lila's Advice (4:02)
17: End Title (1:28)

Source music (not Goldsmith)
18: Give Me the Simple Life (2:18)
19: Twisting Baby (1:42)
20: Rock and Roll Blues (1:32)
21: Anabel (1:18)
22: Gas Station (:57)
23: Stripper Blues (:38)
24: Dixieland (1:04)
25: Rock and Roll Retch (1:39)
26: Romance (1:27)
27: Something's Gotta Give (1:49)
28: You've Gotta See Mama Every Night (1:13)
29: Frankie and Johnny (1:05)
30: You've Gotta See Mama Every Night (:37)

31: The Empty Room (alternate) (1:46)
32: End Title (mono) (1:29)

Nick Quarry
33: Meet Nick Quarry (2:48)
34: Body Art / Don't Move / Pool Bit (1:53)
35: House Call (2:23)
36: Quarry Cornered (3:15)

Performed by
conducted by


Produced by

Released by
Serial number
FSM Vol 3 No 9

Artwork copyright (c) 1963 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation; review copyright (c) 2002 James Southall

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The start of something beautiful

Jerry Goldsmith's relationship with director Franklin J. Schaffner produced many of the composer's best scores (and indeed they were for some of the best films he has scored). They first collaborated in live television in the late 1950s but on a feature, their first project together was The Stripper in 1963, adapted from a play by William Inge.

Goldsmith was still at the very formative stage of his career at the time and it shows: while there are certainly moments where the unique style for which he would later become so famous bubbles through, but by and large this has a slightly more "generic" sound than one may expect from this composer - which is not to say it is bad. The main theme is wonderful, a sort of cross between West Side Story and Alex North's The Misfits and The Long, Hot Summer. (It's one of the jazziest scores from that stage of Goldsmith's career.)

There's some excellent material at other points too: the rock-and-roll like "Party Boy" is highly entertaining; and there is a gorgeous violin solo in "A Change of Heart" before the cue develops into more Misfits stylings. (I'd say that Alex North's obvious influence on Goldsmith has never been more in evidence than in this music.) Some of the dramatic writing too is top-notch, especially in the strained "The Birthday Present". In fairness, none of it is remotely as good as what Goldsmith would write for any of the six Schaffner films he would work on later, but it's still good stuff and clearly very important, as it marked the germination of one of the greatest composer/director relationships there have been.

After Goldsmith's score, Film Score Monthly's album presents many tracks of source music and then a real treat - four cues from the composer's music for Nick Quarry, a never-aired "extended trailer" for a detective show in 1968. The ten minutes of music on offer are hardly going to be the pride and joy of anyone's Goldsmith collection, but do represent the sum total of the composer's contribution to the show. It's funky, jazzy stuff, perhaps more Schifrin than Goldsmith but similar in a way to Our Man Flint, written around about the same time. It's great, and an absolute marvel to think that music written for a trailer for a television series that never got made, recorded 35 years ago, could ever find its way onto a CD. The wonders of modern physics.