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Near, Far, Wherever You Are: “Titanic” Soundtrack to Be Reissued This Spring

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A hundred years ago, it was the largest maritime disaster in history. Fifteen years ago, it was the highest-grossing film of all time and the last massive soundtrack on the pop charts. Now, Sony Classical brings the soundtrack to James Cameron’s Titanic back to the surface in a major way with two collector’s editions of the popular album.

On paper, Titanic would have been your average romantic tearjerker: lower-class boy woos upper-class girl to the displeasure of her wealthy suitor. But that simple story was set against the real-life backdrop of the April 15, 1912 sinking of the RMS Titanic, the world’s largest luxury ocean liner touted for its unsinkability. In total, 1,517 people did not survive the ship’s collision with an iceberg in the Atlantic Ocean.

A story that grandiose earned its stripes as a filmmaking epic when James Cameron, the creator of the Terminator series and The Abyss, tackled a $200 million film adaptation. Despite the major financial stake, three hour-plus running time and cast led by relative unknowns Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet, Titanic was a dizzying success. It grossed $1.8 billion worldwide, made stars out of its cast and won 11 Oscars, including Best Picture and Best Director – a tie for the most statuettes won in a single night.

The film’s stirring score was composed by noted composer James Horner. Though Horner had a rocky past with Cameron thanks to the high-pressure scoring of Aliens in 1986, his evocative melodies, colored with wordless solo vocals, were lauded by critics.

Coupled with a bombastic end title single, “My Heart Will Go On,” written by Horner and lyricist Will Jennings and recorded by Canadian megastar Celine Dion, the Titanic soundtrack was as much a smash as the film it came from. Altogether, the album was certified diamond in the U.S. with over 11 million units shipped; it topped the charts for 16 consecutive weeks and won a total of four Oscars and Golden Globes (one of each award for the score and one for “My Heart Will Go On,” respectively). “My Heart Will Go On” would win four Grammys of its own, including Record of the Year and Song of the Year.

Now, to tie in to the 100th anniversary of the sinking and subsequent 3-D theatrical reissue, Sony Classical will release two expanded editions of the soundtrack next month. Does the Heart of the Ocean (musically speaking, anyway) lurk within these sets? Find out after the jump.

Fans looking for more material by Horner will have to wait, but the new Titanic reissues provide some historical, musical context. The standard two-disc soundtrack pairs a remastered edition of the original soundtrack with a bonus disc of music recorded for the film by I Salonisti, the chamber music group featured in as the band on the ill-fated ship. They play 15 songs, the last two of which (“Nearer My God to Thee” and “Song of Autumn”) do not appear in the film, but are believed to be the last songs heard on the ship before it sank.

In addition, a four-disc collector’s edition of the soundtrack will be released, featuring the popular Back to Titanic companion album released in 1998 and a  disc of original popular songs from the Titanic era, including recordings by Duke Ellington, Guy Lombardo and others.

Both sets, which feature four collectible luggage stickers, are available March 26, and the film will be reissued April 4.

James Horner, Titanic: Anniversary Edition Soundtrack (Sony Classical 88691 91475-2, 2012)

Disc 1: Titanic: Music from the Motion Picture (originally released as Sony Classical SK 63213, 1997)

  1. Never an Absolution
  2. Distant Memories
  3. Southampton
  4. Rose
  5. Leaving Port
  6. Take Her to Sea, Mr. Murdoch
  7. Hard to Starboard
  8. Unable to Stay, Unwilling to Leave
  9. The Sinking
  10. Death of Titanic
  11. A Promise Kept
  12. A Life So Changed
  13. An Ocean of Memories
  14. My Heart Will Go On (Love Theme from Titanic) – Céline Dion
  15. Hymn to the Sea

Disc 2: I Salonisti, Gentlemen, It Has Been a Privilege Playing with You Tonight

  1. Valse Septembre
  2. Marguerite Waltz
  3. Wedding Dance
  4. Poet and Peasant
  5. Blue Danube
  6. Song Without Words
  7. Estudiantina
  8. Vision of Salome
  9. Titsy Bitsy Girl
  10. Alexander’s Ragtime Band
  11. Sphinx
  12. Barcarole
  13. Orpheus
  14. Song of Autumn
  15. Nearer My God to Thee

James Horner, Titanic: Collector’s Anniversary Edition Soundtrack (Sony Classical 88691 92386-2, 2012)

Discs 1-2 identical to above set

Disc 3: Back to Titanic (originally released as Sony Classical/Sony Music Soundtrax SK 60691, 1998)

  1. Titanic Suite – James Horner
  2. An Irish Party in Third Class – Gaelic Storm
  3. Alexander’s Ragtime Band – I Salonisti
  4. The Portrait – James Horner
  5. Jack Dawson’s Luck – James Horner
  6. A Building Panic – James Horner
  7. Nearer My God to Thee – I Salonisti
  8. Come Josephine, in My Flying Machine – Máire Brennan
  9. Lament – James Horner
  10. A Shore Never Reached – James Horner
  11. My Heart Will Go On (Dialogue Mix) – Céline Dion
  12. Epilogue: The Deep and Timeless Sea – James Horner

Disc 4: Popular Music from the Titanic Era

  1. It’s a Long Way to Tipperary – John McCormack
  2. Let Me Call You Sweetheart – Halfway House Dance Orchestra
  3. Vilia – Guy Lombardo & His Orchestra
  4. My Gal Sal – Chick Bullock & His Levee Loungers
  5. Oh! You Beautiful Doll – Chuck Foster & His Orchestra
  6. Martha – Adrian Rollinoi Trio
  7. In the Shade of the Old Apple Tree – Duke Ellington & His Orchestra
  8. Waiting at the Church – Beatrice Kay
  9. Frasquita Serenade – John Kirby & His Orchestra
  10. Shine On, Harvest Moon – Hal Kemp
  11. From the Land of the Sky Blue Water – Mildred Bailey & Her Orchestra
  12. Loch Lomond – Maxine Sullivan & Her Orchestra
  13. A Hot Time in the Old Town Tonight – Miff Mole’s Molers

Written by Mike Duquette

March 19, 2012 at 12:40

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