(CBS Primetime, 1954 - 1971) (Additional episodes produced in syndication, 1971 - 1974) [Reruns of original CBS series were syndicated under the titles: "Jeff's Collie" with Tommy Rettig; and "Timmy and Lassie" with Jon Provost playing Lassie's master; Later episodes during the mid-1960s featured a team of adult Forest Rangers that had adopted Lassie; During the 1970s a cartoon version was produced, called "Lassie's Rescue Rangers"; Latter-day reruns have turned up on various cable TV networks including "TVLand" and "Animal Planet"]
[aka: "Lassie Main & End Title", and aka: "Lassie Theme"; Original title: "Presenting The Doctor" from the 1940 RKO Radio film, "The Courageous Dr. Christian"; This was the original broad sweeping orchestral theme used during the very FIRST season of the series; According to vocalist Charlotte Erwine and library music expert Paul Mandell, this melody was originally written for "The Courageous Dr. Christian", a 1940 RKO Radio Picture, scored by composer William Lava. Paul Mandell identified it specifically as the cue called "Presenting the Doctor" heard during the Main Title, but this melody is used as a motif throughout the film. RKO must have also made this track available for licensing for other purposes many years after its first use in the "Dr. Christian" films, since contributor Eli Segal reports this melody was also heard in the underscore of Ed Wood's infamous 1953 documentary "Glen or Glenda" a year before the Lassie series began airing. Lassie Music Director Raoul Kraushaar had worked at RKO as a composer and Music Editor for their "B-Pictures", and like David Chudnow of MUTEL and David Gordon of Gordon Music, decided he could make money by licensing music tracks from RKO and other low-budget studios to re-use them in television. Chudnow's MUTEL stood for "MUsic for TELevision." This practice which has been called "Music Packaging" had a shaky legal foundation the way some did it; Although recordings of tracks made for theatrical films were the property of studios, the compositions on which they were based had not been licensed specifically for use in any other medium like TV, only for films. And music has several kinds of rights and royalties -- those for the composition, those that are for the recordings, and those for synchronization of compositions and recordings with a particular project -- either on film or video. So there was a "gray area" which Chudnow, Gordon, Kraushaar and a few other Music Packagers of the 1950s successfully exploited. Representing their skill as music editors and their "library" of tracks, Music Packagers edited "B-picture" music tracks into episodes of TV series, and if the composer discovered the extra use and complained to ASCAP, to feign ignorance and pay him a fee or "buy out" his rights. If the Musician's Union complained about re-using recordings made for a motion picture, Music Packagers would actually hire the original composer and tell him to "change a few notes", then send the scores to Europe, Japan or even Mexico where low- cost orchestras would re-record the cues as if they were a different composition with a different title for ASCAP royalties. During the 1950s, foreign recordings of re-cycled cues were made for many TV series including "The Lone Ranger", "The Cisco Kid", "Death Valley Days", "Blondie", "Lassie", "Superman", and others. Even original cues for "Ozzie and Harriet" and CBS Westerns were recorded for first-run use by foreign orchestras because of the U.S. Musicians Union policies on "tracking." But getting back to re-cycled cues: there was the matter of the publisher's share of royalties. Performance royalties such as those collected by ASCAP and BMI have two parts: the composers share and the publishers share (split equally in most cases.) These Music Packagers were shrewd enough to realize that there was also a void in determining who published the music for TV. If the motion picture studio didn't claim the music publishing, (and the low-budget studios hadn't wized up to any benefit from that yet) the Music Packager would go ahead and claim themselves as publishers inventing a name for claiming royalties on cue sheets. The name Kraushaar chose for his "publishing company" was Omar Music. And it was under this name that several Lassie cues and THEMEs were originally listed on ASCAP cue sheets. So here again, the rights that the composer should have under his control were being usurped unless they complained and/or filed a legal action to get back the publishing rights for themselves. A few composers such as Irving Gertz did so, but several others wanted to still get work from such Music Directors in the future and were reluctant to fight. Over the years, some composers finally succeeded in reclaiming their rights and ASCAP made changes in the publishing, but in some cases the credits were corrected years after most royalties had been paid. But in 1960-61 the success in recycling this nostalgic old tune for the Lassie TV series inspired sheet music publication in several forms, including an arrangement for school orchestras and bands as well as a commission of new lyrics for the tune written by Charles Newman and a new title "Secret of the Silent Hills." This was one way the original composer William Lava could have in obtaining some benefit from the use of his music on television; the publisher he chose was the least egrigious of the Music Packagers -- David Gordon of Marlen Music -- who did seem to try to be fair with composers even though re-cycling of cues went on through him also.] Composer: music by William Lava (ASCAP), with lyrics added by Charles Newman (ASCAP) [for awhile, music packager Raoul Kraushaar of Omar Music Service which supplied cues for the show, claimed credit as composer. But it was actually William Lava who really composed this melody, a fact which was later corrected when printed music was published. However, see the next theme which Kraushaar adapted from this one, with only a slight variation in melody, using the same chord progression.] Original Publisher: Marlen Music (ASCAP), sole selling agent Gordon Music Co. 1997 Publisher: Gordon Music Company (ASCAP) Copyright Date: 1961, as seen on band arrangement 1940, concurrent with the film Recordings:
[This theme is a slight variation on the preceding William Lava theme, which music packager Kraushaar may have made, in order to claim copyright ownership of the THEME. It only has a few notes difference, uses the same chord progression, and to the untrained ear may sound the same. "Superman" CD producer/expert Paul Mandell caught this melodic variation, and documented it as a different THEME. Although it was different, the ruse fooled no one -- especially the composer William Lava who heard this "soundalike" on the air. Music Director Kraushaar began to have problems when composers complained to ASCAP that although he may have licensed the rights to various RECORDINGS done for film studios, he failed to license the rights to use their COMPOSITIONS for which he claimed himself as the "publisher" for purpose of collecting the publisher's share of royalties after splicing them into TV series; What resulted was a hassle for the TV producers, since cue sheets had to be corrected, and royalty payments had to be redistributed after ASCAP determined a breach had occurred. "Lassie" fan and contributor Bryon Young tells us this THEME was used for the SECOND SEASON ONLY, yet researcher P. Mandell said it was used through the end of Tommy Rettig's appearance as Jeff -- which would have taken it through the THIRD SEASON at least. At any rate, it was the second THEME used on the series after "Secret of the Silent Hills", and it sounded very much like the former, so most people wouldn't have noticed the change.] Credited Composer: Raoul Kraushaar (ASCAP/BMI) Original Publisher: Omar Music Service (ASCAP) 1997 Publisher: Gordon Music Company (ASCAP) Copyright Date: Renewal Date: Recordings:
[aka: "Dio Possente Dio D'Amor"; aka: "Dio possente" (To Thee, 0 Father!); aka: "A Toi, Seigneur et Roi des Cieux"; aka: "To Thee, 0 God, and King of Heaven"; aka: "Avant de Quitter ces Lieux"; Contributor Bryon Young claims from an analysis of syndicated episodes he has collected on video and audio over the years, that this theme was used for both seasons THREE and FOUR; We are not sure about that, and Craig Patillo's "TV Theme Soundtrack Directory" makes no mention of it at all...but Mr. Young is sure he remembers hearing it as a child during the CBS run of the series and has it on audio tape recorded off the air on an old tape recorder, so we'll give him the benefit of the doubt. This arrangement of an opera aria aired may indeed have been used during Lassie's master change from Jeff (played by Tommy Rettig) to Timmy (played by Jon Provost.) That would have coincided with the change of ownership of the series to The Wrather Corporation, whose producer- owner Jack Wrather was married to actress Bonita Granville; she was said to have influenced him in certain decisions (perhaps even this casting change...and may have even liked certain opera arias, for example...) Since former music director Raoul Kraushaar had created problems by tracking in cues from other composers and claiming publisher royalties, the arranger of this aria was most likely someone else, perhaps the Wrather Corporation's Music Director at the time, who was Les Baxter (who composed the next THEME with its melody whistled by Muzzy Marcelino.) This melody appears in an aria from the famous 19th-century opera "Faust", arranged as an instrumental; In the original opera, the aria is sung by a young soldier named Valentine as he prepares to go off to war in the second Act of this five-act opera written by the French composer; it became one of Gounod's more well-known lyrical melodies, and "Faust" firmly established his reputation throughout Europe and later the world; Gounod was also the composer of "Funeral March of a Marionette", used as a TV theme for "Alfred Hitchcock Presents." A little-known fact about this cavatina is that it did not appear in the original 1859 version of "Faust" for its French premiere, but was added for the 1863 London premiere, sung in Italian, and later translated into French; hence there are multiple lyric versions and titles, including translations of those variant titles into English. Whether this THEME originally aired on the CBS network for ONE or TWO seasons, we do agree that it came after the Raoul Kraushaar variation of Lava's original THEME. And it also was identified by contributor Carolyn Fix as a THEME she recognized during Cable TV reruns in the 2002 - 2003 season, so it was used for the Lassie series.] Composer: Charles Gounod Original Publisher: 2001 Publisher: In the Public Domain. Composition Date: 1863 Copyright Date: Renewal Date: Recordings:
[aka: Lassie Main & End Title; aka: Lassie (Sig[nature]) aka: New Lassie Theme aka: New Lassie 01 This was arguably the most recognizable THEME associated with the series. It featured a Scottish-highlands style melody whistled by Muzzy Marcellino -- with a light string orchestra accompaniment playing tremelando at first and then legato later; Craig W. Patillo's 1990 book "TV Theme Soundtrack Directory" calls this THEME "Whistle", although no other source can be found for that title. The sub-title "Goodbye My Love" is on the lead-sheet manuscript filed for copyright with the Library of Congress on January 11, 1962, and listed in the Worldcat.org online library catalog. This theme was probably used beginning with SEASON FIVE in 1958.] Composer: Leslie ("Les") Baxter (ASCAP/BMI) Original Publisher: [no publisher credit in ASCAP Index 1978, citation in ASCAP Repetoire says "a BMI publisher"... may have been originally Granson Music (BMI)] 1997 Publisher: Lone Ranger Music Inc. (ASCAP) c/o Broadway Video Inc. 2013 Publisher: Little Lotta Music, Inc. (BMI) New York, NY http://ClassicMedia.tv div. of DreamWorks Animation SKG, Inc. Copyright Date: January 11, 1962, Eu 701 869. Renewal Date: Recordings: [ReIssue] CD: "Television's Greatest Hits: Black & White Classics (Vol. 4)" (1996) TVT Records TVT 1600-2 Studio Orchestra conducted by Les Baxter
[aka: "Lassie (Signature)(M & E)", the theme which was used as Main & End Titles during the eleventh and twelfth seasons after Lassie had been adopted into the service of Park Rangers; and later during certain syndicated rerun packages; Nathan Scott (father of studio and jazz saxophonist Tom Scott) made the arrangement heard on the air (verified by Tom Scott.)] Arranger/Adapter: Nathan Scott (ASCAP) Composer: Traditional English folk melody, in a copyrighted arrangement by Nathan Scott (ASCAP) [publishers of this arrangement]: Original Publisher: Arch Lassie Account, Arch Music Co., Inc. (ASCAP) 1997 Publisher: Lone Ranger Music, Inc. (ASCAP) c/o Broadway Video Inc. Copyright Date: [composition in the Public Domain] Renewal Date: Recordings:
[aka: "Lassie Theme"; aka: Lassie (Sig[nature]) aka: New Lassie Theme aka: New Lassie 01 After a two-year hiatus, this familiar Lassie THEME that featured a Scottish highlands-style melody whistled by Muzzy Marcellino made return appearances during seasons thirteen and fourteen, and may have been re-instated as the Main Theme from that point on; Acording to ASCAP records, the return of this THEME occurred during the 3-episode arc called "Lassie, The Voyager" in season thirteen (1966 - 67); It also was credited in ASCAP for a couple of later 3-episode arcs or compilations -- "Lassie at Hanford Point" during season fourteen and "Flight of the Cougar" -- a film compilation of three episodes taken from season fourteen. There is little direct evidence that we can use to confirm it, but these uses during 3-episode arcs and the film compilation leads us to believe that at some point during 1966 or even as late as 1967, "Lassie" TV producers restored this as the Main Title and End Credits THEME again for the remaining seasons of the TV series; Supporting this conclusion is Craig W. Patillo's 1990 book called "TV Theme Soundtrack Directory." It mentions the Baxter THEME as being used up until the end of the series (although the book makes no mention of the use of "Greensleeves" or the "Faust" aria THEMEs.) Patillo's book also refers to this THEME as "Whistle", although no other source can be found for that title.] Composer: Leslie ("Les") Baxter (ASCAP/BMI) Original Publisher: [no publisher credit in ASCAP Index 1978, citation in ASCAP Rep says "a BMI publisher"... may have been originally Granson Music (BMI)] 1997 Publisher: Lone Ranger Music Inc. (ASCAP) c/o Broadway Video Inc. Copyright Date: January 11, 1962, Eu 701 869. Renewal Date: Recordings: [ReIssue] CD: "Television's Greatest Hits: Black & White Classics (Vol. 4)" (1996) TVT Records TVT 1600-2 Studio Orchestra conducted by Les Baxter
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