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The Music of the Lord of the Rings Films: A Comprehensive Account of Howard Shore's Scores (Book & Rarities CD): 1 [Hardcover]

Howard Shore , Doug Adams , John Howe , Alan Lee , Fran Walsh
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
RRP: 49.95
Price: 39.25 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

28 Sep 2010
Howard Shore's Academy Award-winning score for The Lord of the Rings has been hailed as among the greatest film music ever written. Sweeping in scope, it is an interpretation of J.R.R. Tolkien's Middle-earth as music --- an operatic tapestry of cultures, histories, languages, and principles. The Music of the Lord of the Rings Films takes the reader on an unprecedented journey into the heart of this history-making opus with extensive music examples, original manuscript scores, a rarities CD, and fascinating glimpses into the creative process from the composer himself. Includes: Foreword by Howard Shore Introduction by Fran Walsh Sketches by John Howe and Alan Lee Includes Exclusive Rarities CD of unreleased LOTR music Color stills from the films

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The Music of the Lord of the Rings Films: A Comprehensive Account of Howard Shore's Scores (Book & Rarities CD): 1 + The Lord of the Rings Symphony + Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey  - O.S.T.
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Product details

  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Carpentier / Alfred Music Publishing; 1st Unabridged edition (28 Sep 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0739071572
  • ISBN-13: 978-0739071571
  • Product Dimensions: 3.3 x 21 x 25.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 105,017 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Doug Adams is a Chicago-based author and musicologist. In 2001, Adams was invited by Howard Shore to observe and document his work on Peter Jackson's motion picture trilogy of The Lord of the Rings. This book is the culmination of almost a decade of writing and research, during which time Adams attended recording sessions, examined the original scores, and was given total access to the composer's archives.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A true milestone of Film Music as Art... 5 Oct 2010
OK, first of all, full disclosure: the author of this book, Doug Adams, happens to be a colleague and friend, and I have thus enjoyed a unique view of the work as it came together over the better part of the last decade. That said, I don't benefit from its sales, nor have I been asked to write this review. I DO write this review because, irrespective of my association with the author, I am a film music journalist myself - and I firmly believe that THE MUSIC OF THE LORD OF THE RINGS FILMS is perhaps the most accomplished and significant analysis of a film score ever published.

Let's begin with an appreciation of the sheer magnitude of the film score under discussion. At the outset, we must note that there is very little in the history of music that can easily be compared to Howard Shore's score for Peter Jackson's film trilogy of THE LORD OF THE RINGS. When you consider that the films are most accurately viewed as one continuous story, with the similarly continuous score totaling more than TEN HOURS in length, you realize the true scope of Shore's opus. In the world of cinema, there is little to compare it to. One can draw some parallels with John Williams' work on the STAR WARS saga, although its entries are far more individualistic and spread out over a longer period of time. Certain composers for television have written more total hours related to a contiguous body of work; but the musical architecture of, for example, 200 episode scores from THE X-FILES is so vastly different as to defy direct comparison. Even in the world of classical music, it is likewise difficult to find points of reference. For sheer length, narrative scope, and leitmotivic complexity, we can turn to history's *other* great musical ring cycle, Wagner's DER RING DES NIBELUNGEN ... and that's about it.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A magnificent achievement 25 Oct 2010
When JRR Tolkien created his fictional Middle Earth he created a world so rich in invention and detail that it seemed like a description of a real world, real events and real peoples. It explains why generations of readers have fallen in love with his works. In his Lord of the Rings trilogy (originally one book but split into three on the advice of his publisher) he created what has become one of the most popular and beloved works of modern literature.

Ten years ago an almost unheard of New Zealand film maker adapted Tolkien's great work for film and Tolkien lovers all over the world held their breath. They needn't have worried; Peter Jackson's film trilogy 'The Lord of the Rings' was every bit as epic in scope and detail as the world Tolkien had invented. They were hugely successful and taken together, one of the greatest films ever made. A large factor in its success was the magnificent score Canadian composer Howard Shore composed for the films - every bit as complex and rich in invention as the world it was describing and it went on, like the films, to win numerous awards. It was very recently voted the favourite film score by listeners to the UK's Classic FM radio station.

Shore created a score into which he put as much thought and detail as any great composer. For instance, he carefully crafted different types of music for each of the different races and develop these as the story does. So as the events of the story develop and events unfold, the themes in Shore's score interact in the same way - very much in the manner of the Leitmotif's Wagner invented for his great Ring Cycle.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Super 11 Mar 2011
This book is quite simply one of the greatest things I have ever brought off Amazon. Anyone who is a fan of Howard Shore's music to the motion picture trilogy should definitely be in possession of this book. It provides the reader with a fantastic theme by theme analysis of the films and is beautifully illustrated with sketches, photo stills from the films and score examples. An totally brilliant buy for the price!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Book Review 22 Dec 2011
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
For anyone studying the music of Lord of the Rings, Film Music/Composition, Music for musicals and operas including its composition, Western Mainstream Orchestral composition in general, this is a very good book to read.

It is full of compositional techniques used by Howard Shore in the Lord of the Rings film. What you get sense of; is the strong use of leitmotif and how it has been used so successfully within the films.
When you watch the films after reading the book, you discern sections of the music that you have read about and only then do you ascertain how vital a role music has within the film.

Though it is a specialist book written by American musicologist; Doug Adams. Like books of this type, I think it is only truly understandable by those who have good knowledge of western classical music theory.

For me as a music student it is fantastic and at 31 definitely a good buy!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good for anyone with serious music knowledge 7 July 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Good for anyone with serious music knowledge. The rarities CD is the real winner. Some nice pieces on it. But very expensive, even if the book is quite big.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A real treasure! 14 Mar 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Having written my undergraduate dissertation on Howard Shore's for the Lord of the Rings back in 2009, I continue to have a significant interest in his work. If only this book had been available back then, it woudl have been an absolute Godsend! It is an absolute treasure! Every leitmotif is displayed and explored in detail. Motivic relationships are mapped out and there are superb Alan Lee and John Howe sketches throughout. CD contains extremely rare previously unheard material well worth a listen by any Shore fan!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful product, excellent service
Gorgeous book came before expected in perfect condition. It was bought as a gift for a passionate musician and Lord of the Rings fan and will most likely be treasured for a very... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Clara Taylor
5.0 out of 5 stars A book for those devoted to the music of Lord of the Rings
If you want to be able to listen to Howard Shore's great score and be able to name each theme, this is the book for you.
Published 6 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Syllabus guide to OCR 'A' level Music (Film)
Purchased this book to help student studying for OCR 'A' level Music - Film Music section.
A truely superb book written by a master - if you really want to learn how to... Read more
Published 8 months ago by Pontius Pilot
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic
I bought this for my son for Christmas - he loved it! That is good enough for me to give it 5 stars!
Published 17 months ago by C. Dul
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent presentation
Doug Adams writes a brilliant accompaniment to the LOTR scores by Howard Shore.
Lovely presentation and includes an extras cd.
Published 20 months ago by A A PHOENIX
5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible book and even more wonderful cd
Have been awaiting this book for a very long time and it's eventual arrival did not disappoint.

The book breaks down every piece of music used in the Lord of the Rings... Read more
Published on 27 Dec 2011 by PurpleCoat
5.0 out of 5 stars A comprehensive account about Howard Shore's music
A very useful enciclopedy for everyone who wants to deepen the most interesting aspects of this large soundtrack composed by Maestro Howard Shore, one of the best composers of our... Read more
Published on 26 Nov 2010 by Pierfrancesco
5.0 out of 5 stars I wish I could read music
This is a lovely book with everything a Tolkien enthusiast who also enjoys the Peter Jackson films could want. Read more
Published on 6 Nov 2010 by A. Forbes
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