Why did Billie Joe jump?

It was the third of June, another sleepy, dusty Delta day.I was out choppin’ cotton and my brother was balin’ hay… So begins one of the greatest, and most mysterious, hit songs of the Sixties, ‘Ode to Billie Joe’, recorded by Bobbie Gentry, a part-time swimsuit model from the wrong side of the

Impossibly dreamy

To many theatregoers, the time is nigh to ‘right the unrighteable wrong’ … Later this month, after more than 40 years away from the London stage, the Tony-award-winning musical Man of La Mancha returns in a powerful collaboration with the English National Opera, with Kelsey Grammer (Dr Frasier Crane to many) in the lead

A celebration of film music

Let’s face it, everyone loves a list. We at The Record Album are no different. So, to mark the coming of the annual celebration of the film industry this weekend that is the Oscars, Pitchfork, the American online music magazine known for its ‘best of’ compilations, has put us in the mood by

ADIEU FRANCIS LAI

The memorable piano and strings theme to the film ‘Love Story’ won Francis Lai an Oscar for best original music score in 1971 – but he almost turned down the chance to compose the soundtrack which became his greatest success. The actor Alain Delon persuaded Lai, who has died aged 86, to postpone