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Golden Oldies Television Music
What is a Golden Oldie?
It's official! The best TV theme music are the golden oldies from the 50's, 60's and 70's. Can you remember any of the most recent TV themes? I'll give you 'Friends' but that's about all. You see a golden oldie TV theme is one where when the theme is played you know immediately what the show was. Of course many of you are going to say that it's the old nostalgia thing and maybe you are right. I still claim however that in 40 years time when the Big Bang theme is played, if it is played, no-one will have a clue as to what show it was from. However, in 40 years time the themes which are played in this hub will still be recognised, not from memories perhaps but from this hub. At least that is what I'm hoping. So enjoy, remember and if you are not old enough marvel at the golden oldies of yesterday.
Probably the greatest and well known of all the golden oldie TV themes. The Hawaii 5-0 series ran for 12 years from 1968 to 1980. It is a police drama set in Hawaii depicting a police unit headed up by Steve McGarrett played by Jack Lord. The theme music itself was penned by Morton Stevens and became extremely popular. A particular feature of each episode was that McGarrett's last words were always 'Book em Danno'. The show starred Jack Lord and James MacArthur (Danno). The series title was to honour the fact that Hawaii became America's 50th state and not because there was any significant police team called 5-0 in Hawaii. The show had many returning criminals played by guest stars throughout the years and of course Steve McGarrett had his nemesis Wo Fat. One of the interesting fashion notes for the show was that Steve McGarrett always wore a dark suit and tie which no real policeman in Hawaii would ever wear preferring to stick to the typical Hawaiian coloured shirt.
The theme music for the western series Rawhide was written by Dimitri Tiomkin and sang by Frankie Lane. It is the show which made Clint Eastwood a household name. He played Rowdy Yates and it also starred Eric Fleming as Gil Favor the trail boss who always had to keep an impetuous Rowdy Yates in line. The other characters that sometimes had stories to themselves were G.W Wishbone (the cook) played by Paul Brinegar and the scout Pete Nolan played by Sheb Wooley. The show ran for seven and a half years from 1959 to 1966 and was one of the longest running westerns on TV.
Mission Impossible ran for 7 years between 1966 and 1973 and was the story of an elite covert undercover unit that carried out highly sensitive missions. The missions were always given via a small cassette tape deck which self destructed after the words 'if you take this mission it is subject to official denial in the event of capture, death or failure'. The stars of the show were Peter Graves, Barbara Baine and Martin Landau. Jim Phelps (Peter Graves) is head of the secret agency that is an offshoot of the CIA and he picks his team depending on the type of operation it is. One thing that never changed on Mission Impossible was that everything was done in utmost secrecy and all missions used technology which wasn't yet in existence and yet today would be in every day use. Well almost!
The Avengers ran from 1961 until 1969 in one hour episodes and starred Patrick Macnee as John Steed a suave debonair British secret service agent. John Steed had partners who were fashionable, intelligent and beautiful woman and who all became famous through their various roles. Steed's first partner was Honor Blackman (Cathy Gale) who had a penchant for leather clothes and was good at karate. She eventually left to make a Bond movie and a career in movies. Steed's next partner was Diana Rigg as Emma Peel who was more professional and could shot as well. Again Rigg left to make a Bond movie and pursue a film career. Steed's final assistant was Linda Thorson as Tara King another amateur who was good at karate. The series became a cult and also was extremely popular in America before it was axed by CBS because it lost its audience to Rowan and Martin's Laugh In which it was pitched against.