This website was created partly to promote the book series, Musique Fantastique [Second Edition] 100+ Years of Fantasy, Science Fiction & Horror Film Music by Randall D. Larson, but more importantly is intended to be a resource for news, views, & interviews about music for science fiction, fantasy, and horror films. As an extension of the books, it provides additional material and links to further resources about this unique genre of film and television scoring. For news on the book series, scroll down toward the bottom of the home page.
Hi Randall, 🙂
Long time no see!
I ordered the Dawley book today, Sylvia passed along your site and Huud interview.
It’s exciting to read your engrossing interview with Terry Michael Huud and know that within a week I’ll be watching a restored print of Ghost of Slumber Mountain with modern music for modern sensibilities.
Thanks for all the “good words” about music and movies you’ve given us. Truth is, I know nothing about music, so, when you write, when you interview – you illuminate the darkness and I’ve learned a tasty morsel more, I’m not as ignorant as when I began.
Mr. Larson: I should have bought your book years ago! As a huge fan of classic horror and fantasy film music, your book is truly “fantastique”! I have a couple of questions, though.
I’ve been trying to find out just who composed the music for THE DEVIL BAT (1940), and every source I’ve found lists David Chudnow as the “Music Director” for the film. Could Chudnow have actually composed this score? I ask, because I have heard more than my fair share of “Poverty Row” horror films, Westerns, etc. from the mid-30s onward, and I have never heard even a portion of the DEVIL BAT music in another film before ’40. Just curious about that!
You kind of give Edward Kay a raw deal in that you pick THE APE MAN as representative as the kind of scores he wrote at Monogram. Actually, his work on the later CHARLIE CHAN films at Monogram are more inspired. I particularly like his music in DARK ALIBI and in even lesser films like DANGEROUS MONEY and THE TRAP, Kay uses a fun comic-mysterious tune with a xylophone as part of the orchestra. On the other hand, sometimes he used some “dreary” music – sometimes maybe too much – although it fits the atmosphere in movies like THE SHANGHAI COBRA!
Was Edward Kay related to Arthur Kay, who composed music earlier in the ’30s for Republic serials?
Speaking of serials, I’ve always enjoyed Karl Hajos’ scores – particularly for WEREWOLF OF LONDON, which was very serial-like, and of course Universal used it a lot in FLASH GORDON serials. Hajos later worked at Republic on serials and wound up at Monogram and PRC – sadly. His score for CHARLIE CHAN IN THE SECRET SERVICE is wildly melodramatic. It reminds me more of Clifford Vaughan’s score for THE RAVEN than Hajos’ usual style, but for some reason, I enjoy it. Most fans of the CHAN series point out how Hajos’ scores Charlie’s trip in a cab, where the music is furiously fast, whereas the action on the screen is anything but!
I wish you had included info. on CHANDU THE MAGICIAN, as that movie pre-dates KING KONG as a film with a continuous musical score by Leon De Francesco and others! Great stuff!
Again, you’ve done a wonderful job! Looking forward to Volume Two! – Lenny Kohl