The War: A Ken Burns Film

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Barnes & Noble - David McGee
Focusing on the lives of people in four small towns during World War II, Ken Burns's seven-hour epic The War brings the reality of war home on a personal, intensely human level in way no other filmmaker has done since the multiple-Oscar-winning 1946 classic, The Best Years of Our Lives. This is not war romanticized; it's war up close, brutal, bloody, and horrific, and the memories of how it was remain searing and vivid to the veterans and their loved ones. The music Burns has chosen for The War thus reflects both the hopes and the melancholy of those years, sometimes all in the course of one song, as on Norah Jones's somber piano-and-vocal reading of the film's theme ...
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09/11/2007 CD Soundtrack BRAND NEW! Fast Shipping! Tracking included! 100% Satisfaction Guaranteed! ! ! Satisfaction Guaranteed! Brand New, Fast Shipping, Satisfaction ... Guaranteed! ! ! Satisfaction Guaranteed! Read more Show Less

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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David McGee
Focusing on the lives of people in four small towns during World War II, Ken Burns's seven-hour epic The War brings the reality of war home on a personal, intensely human level in way no other filmmaker has done since the multiple-Oscar-winning 1946 classic, The Best Years of Our Lives. This is not war romanticized; it's war up close, brutal, bloody, and horrific, and the memories of how it was remain searing and vivid to the veterans and their loved ones. The music Burns has chosen for The War thus reflects both the hopes and the melancholy of those years, sometimes all in the course of one song, as on Norah Jones's somber piano-and-vocal reading of the film's theme song "American Anthem." Comparable in effect to the poignant "Ashokan Farewell" theme of Burns's Civil War project, it is repeated at the end of the soundtrack as a haunting instrumental for piano and cello by Bill Charlap and Amanda Forsyth, respectively, who render it with touching sensitivity to the nuanced tenor of Jones's vocal and to the series' overall mood. The War soundtrack album is a concise, 17-song sampler of the music heard over the course of seven hours of film, including original performances by contemporary artists such as Jones, Forsyth, and Charlap, classical violin virtuoso Joshua Bell, and Wynton Marsalis, who contributed some original compositions, including the introspective piano-and-cello instrumental "America My Home" featuring Forsyth and Charlap in another star turn. These recordings complement the indelible hits from the war years, which here include Kay Starr's buoyant "If I Could Be with You," the King Cole Trio's smooth workout on a V-disc recording of "If You Can't Smile and Say Yes," and tracks from Duke Ellington, Count Basie, and Benny Goodman. Bolstering the effect of all this timeless pop are classical performances by Yo-Yo Ma and by Leonard Slatkin conducting the London Philharmonic in William Walton's brooding "The Death of Falstaff." [Also available: the four-CD box set of all War-related discs, including the soundtrack.]
All Music Guide - Richie Unterberger
The War, directed by Ken Burns, was a seven-part documentary series broadcast on PBS television in 2007, focusing on the experiences of American soldiers in World War II. Much popular music of the period was heard on the soundtrack, as was some music specifically composed and recorded for use in the film. This four-CD set, with the full title The War: A Ken Burns Film: Deluxe Edition: Soundtrack and Music from the Second World War, devotes one disc each to a certain thematic strain. Disc one -- the only one in this package that is also available separately, as a stand-alone release -- focuses on music actually heard on the soundtrack, mixing compositions/performances by Wynton Marsalis; vintage recordings from the time by Count Basie, Benny Goodman, Bing Crosby, Nat King Cole, and Kay Starr; and some other material, including one track, "American Anthem," recorded by Norah Jones on piano and vocal specifically for the series (and previously unreleased prior to its appearance here). Disc two, "Sentimental Journey: Hits from the Second World War," has some of the smoother and more romantic jazz-pop hits of the era by the likes of Benny Goodman, Frank Sinatra, the Mills Brothers, Cab Calloway, Harry James, and Tommy Dorsey. Disc three, "I'm Beginning to See the Light: Dance Hits from the Second World War," has swing jazz that repeats some names from earlier in the box (Goodman, Basie, Miller, Artie Shaw) and adds selections from some others like Gene Krupa and Jimmie Lunceford, and is the CD most likely to be enjoyed by general music fans. The fourth and final disc, "Songs Without Words: Classical Music from The War," has ten classical pieces recorded between 1963 and 2006 of a subdued and mournful nature, two of which noted cellist Yo-Yo Ma plays on, and one (Aaron Copland's "Concerto for Clarinet, Strings, Harp and Piano") on which Benny Goodman plays clarinet. This is primarily recommended to those viewers deeply impressed by the series, rather than the general music listener, who might find the range of styles -- primarily mixing jazz and classical sides, but also with some non-jazz songs from then and now -- too wide to sustain interest. An illustrated booklet from Ken Burns explains the conception and intention of the documentary series, with a smaller one explaining the reasoning behind the music selected for the soundtrack.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 9/11/2007
  • Label: Sony
  • UPC: 886971020328
  • Catalog Number: 710203

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 American Anthem (5:07)
  2. 2 Walton: The Death of Falstaff - London Philharmonic Orchestra (3:37)
  3. 3 The Wang Wang Blues (2:52)
  4. 4 Movin Back - Wynton Marsalis (2:46)
  5. 5 How Long Blues - Count Basie (2:58)
  6. 6 In the Nick of Time - Mike Marshall (6:13)
  7. 7 It's Been a Long, Long Time - Les Paul (2:59)
  8. 8 America My Home - Wynton Marsalis (2:17)
  9. 9 If I Could Be with You (One Hour Tonight) - Capitol International Jazzmen (2:48)
  10. 10 Blue as the Turquoise Night of Neyshabur - Silk Road Ensemble (4:27)
  11. 11 Until I'm in Your Arms Again - Wynton Marsalis (2:41)
  12. 12 Pärt: Variations for the Healing of Arinushka (5:10)
  13. 13 Basie Boogie - Count Basie Orchestra (2:23)
  14. 14 Solitude (3:14)
  15. 15 Copland: Concerto for Clarinet, Strings, Harp, And Piano - Columbia Symphony Orchestra (7:44)
  16. 16 If You Can't Smile and Say Yes - Nat King Cole (2:34)
  17. 17 American Anthem - Amanda Forsyth (1:44)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Ken Burns Indexed Contributor
Aaron Copland Conductor
Sam Bush Mandolin
Edgar Meyer Bass
Bing Crosby Vocals
Kay Starr Vocals
Les Paul Guitar
Buster Bailey Clarinet
Count Basie Piano, Leader
Buck Clayton Trumpet
Bill Coleman Trumpet
Harry "Sweets" Edison Trumpet
Benny Goodman Clarinet
Freddie Green Guitar
Johnny Hodges Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Soprano Saxophone
Jo Jones Drums
John Kirby Bass
Mel Powell Piano
Max Roach Drums
Tab Smith Alto Saxophone, Soprano Saxophone
Buddy Tate Tenor Saxophone
Cootie Williams Trumpet
Lou McGarity Trombone
Oscar Moore Guitar
Yo-Yo Ma Cello, Soloist
Coleman Hawkins Tenor Saxophone
Wellman Braud Bass
Sonny Greer Drums
Walter Page Bass
Joshua Bell Violin
Leonard Slatkin Conductor
Barney Bigard Clarinet, Tenor Saxophone
Don Byas Tenor Saxophone
Harry Carney Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Baritone Saxophone
Bill Charlap Piano
Nat King Cole Piano, Vocals
Ralph Collier Drums
Ed Cuffee Trombone
Victor Goines Saxophone
Fred Guy Guitar
Al Killian Trumpet
Delfeayo Marsalis Trumpet
Mike Marshall Guitar
Tommy Morgan Electric Guitar
Eli Robinson Trombone
Juan Tizol Valve Trombone
Jack Washington Baritone Saxophone
Sid Weiss Bass
Arthur Whetsol Trumpet
Edward Aaron Cello
Todd Reynolds Violin
Mark OConner Violin
Ed Lewis Trumpet
Otto Hardwick Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Bass Saxophone
Laura Newell Harp
Kayhan Kalhor Kamanche
Abba Bogin Piano
Colin Jacobsen Violin
Carlos Henríquez Bass
Leo Suzuki Viola
Norah Jones Piano, Vocals
Amanda Forsyth Cello
Siamak Aghaei Santur
Nick Cords Viola
Sandeep Das Tabla
Doug Wamble Guitar
Ali Muhammed Jackson Drums
Lawrence D. Brown Trombone
Chief Justice Earl Warren Alto Saxophone
Robert Bruce Scott Trombone
Siamak Jahangiri Ney
Kalle Randalu Piano
Technical Credits
Aaron Copland Composer
William Walton Composer
Cat Stevens Composer
Steven Berkowitz Producer
Ken Burns Producer, Liner Notes
Wynton Marsalis Arranger, Composer
Delfeayo Marsalis Producer
J.P. Johnson Composer
Howard Fritzson Art Direction
Tom Schick Engineer
Lynn Novick Producer, Liner Notes
Duncan Allardyce Producer
Lee Alexander Producer
Sarah Botstein Producer
James P. Nichols Engineer
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