You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Complete ‘Star Trek’ music set warps in

Fifteen-CD collection contains every note from original series

By now, 46 years after the original series’ September 1966 debut, one might imagine that every conceivable aspect of “Star Trek” lore and memorabilia has been mined and merchandised.

Not quite. Next week, Burbank-based film-music label La-La Land Records will release a 15-CD boxed set of music from the original “Star Trek” series: every note that was written and recorded for the sci-fi drama, more than 17 hours of music in all and retailing for $225.

Although music for the daytime soap “Dark Shadows” got a similarly deluxe treatment in 2004, this is perhaps the first time that the score for a classic, primetime network series has received such a lavish (and complete) presentation.

“This is a rare case where the collectors’ market is big enough that it could finance a proper restoration,” says album producer Lukas Kendall, who oversaw the project and brought several parties to the table including CBS, which controls all things “Star Trek,” and GNP Crescendo, the label that had previously released several “Trek” albums.

“I think I speak for a lot of ‘Star Trek’ fans and film-music fans when I say we just wanted to hear every note of music,” Kendall adds.

Once the deal was struck, GNP Crescendo relinquished control of the original “Trek” tapes — mostly on quarter-inch tape, some dating back to 1965 — and digital transfers began.

Kendall, meanwhile, consulted all the handwritten original scores by composers including Alexander Courage (who penned the familiar fanfare and theme), Fred Steiner (“Perry Mason”), Sol Kaplan (“The Spy Who Came in From the Cold”), George Duning (“Picnic”) and Gerald Fried (“Roots”).

Luckily, CBS retained extensive paperwork from original producing studios Desilu and Paramount, notes fellow producer and “Trek” aficionado Neil S. Bulk, who waded through all of the many recording sessions to assemble the various scores in proper order.

And, Bulk adds, the music survives in remarkably good sound. “You’re hearing detail you’ve never heard before. Better clarity, better dynamics. The difference (from earlier LPs and CDs) is stunning.”

Also consulting throughout the four-month editing and assembly process was Jeff Bond, author of the book “The Music of ‘Star Trek,'” who penned the extensive notes that accompany the set.

It’s a very different style of scoring than exists today, Bond says. “Music had to give a sense that you were really out in space on this giant ship with these heroic characters. The music played an integral part in convincing the audience that all this was happening.” It was all done with orchestras averaging just 25 players.

And, because only 34 of the 79 episodes sported original scores and the remainder were “tracked” with music from earlier episodes, the repetition meant that fans were especially aware of the music. “More than any other show,” says Bond, “this music not only recalls specific moments or action, it recalls even lines of dialogue, it’s so ingrained in our subconscious. You re-experience the show by listening to this music.”

La-La Land will unveil the new box Monday at 7:30 p.m. at the Egyptian Theater in Hollywood. Bond will moderate a discussion with “Star Trek” writer David Gerrold (“The Trouble With Tribbles”) and composer Fried. Classic episodes “Amok Time” and “Mirror, Mirror” will be screened.

Fried, 84, is the only survivor among the original “Trek” composers and still plays oboe. At the event, he will perform a suite for oboe and piano based on eight themes he wrote for the series.

Fried’s Vulcan combat music from “Amok Time” is often parodied on shows like “Futurama.” Asked about his “Trek” fame, he says from his home in Santa Fe: “I love it. Andy Warhol said 15 minutes of fame is a good deal, and here I’m getting worldwide attention. What’s to complain?”

More Music

  • Jingle Punks Jingle Player

    Jingle Punks at 10: How the Production Music Platform's Player Works

    Though its primary function is creative, Jingle Punks is built on a foundation of technology and administration. The patented Jingle Player that lets customers search for music using pop culture terms is both intuitive and efficient. Typing in “Reservoir Dogs” or “Starbucks” generates suggestions. Queries are monitored “so if there isn’t an exact match, we’ll suggest [...]

  • Apple Music Connect Is Being Discontinued

    Apple Music Phases Out Connect Social Feed

    Apple Music has notified artists that it will be phasing out its Connect social feed. Artists won’t be able to post to Connect anymore effective immediately, and their existing posts will be removed by next May, according to an email sent to artists that was first published by 9to5Mac Thursday. “Today we’re streamlining music discovery [...]

  • Cardi B iHeart Radio Music Awards

    iHeartRadio Music Awards Move to Fox

    iHeartMedia and Fox Broadcasting Company today announced the return of the iHeartRadio Music Awards in 2019. The show will air live on Thursday, March 14 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on Fox from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, and will also stream online and broadcast live on iHeartMedia radio stations nationwide. Performers will be announced in [...]

  • 'Blurred Lines' Suit Ends With $5

    'Blurred Lines' Suit Ends With $5 Million Judgement Against Robin Thicke, Pharrell Williams

    After five years, the legal battle over the copyright of the Robin Thicke’s 2013 hit “Blurred Lines” has ended, with Marvin Gaye’s family being awarded a final judgment of nearly $5 million against the song’s primary writers, Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams, according to CNN and other reports. The pair were accused of copyright infringement [...]

  • Jingle Punks at 10: Production Music

    Jingle Punks at 10: How the Production Music House Turned Passion Into Profits

    In a typical post-awards show scene, two music professionals start a friendly conversation at a bar. “I start telling him, ‘I’m the king of all jingles,’” says Jared Gutstadt, co-founder of Jingle Punks, the venerable production music house that he launched 10 years ago.“I thought I was talking to a complete stranger.” Turns out he [...]

  • Alison Wenham Steps Down as CEO

    Alison Wenham Steps Down as CEO of WIN

    After 12 years at the helm of the Worldwide Independent Network, a global trade organization for the independent music industry, Alison Wenham is stepping down as Chief Executive, it was announced today. Prior to joining WIN full time in 2016 Alison was CEO of The Association of Independent Music (AIM), which she started in 1999. [...]

  • Forrest Gump

    Guild of Music Supervisors Awards to Honor Joel Sill; King Princess to Perform (EXCLUSIVE)

    The Guild of Music Supervisors has announced that Joel Sill will receive the organization’s Legacy Award for his contribution to music in film. Sill’s body of work includes “Forrest Gump,” “The Goonies,” “Blade Runner,” “The Color Purple” and “My Cousin Vinny.” He will be joined by Spotify’s RISE artist, King Princess, who will be performing as [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content