A to Z Challenge: Y (John Williams’ film scores)

*Read John Williams’ biography here

You Are Welcome
John Williams was 22 years old when he scored a promotional travelogue You Are Welcome. This is significant because it is believed this is the first proper film scored by Williams.

Williams was in the 596th Air Force Band at Pepperrell Air Force Base in Newfoundland when he composed, arranged, directed (and played in) the 22 minute background score for this Newfoundland travelogue.

Williams was restricted to the 12 piece 596th Air Force band and had to use his training to make his limited orchestra give the effect of a much larger orchestra. The score was considered unique in that it incorporated themes from Newfoundland folk songs. However, in 2015 Williams said about the score: “It was not an original score. I did not have a clue or an idea on how to do that. What I did was go to the library, it must have been in St. John’s, and pick a Newfoundland folk song or two which formed the basis of what I arranged for that little film.”

This was the start of Williams’ success at scoring films as it was selected as “one of the outstanding travelogues for 1954” during a premier showing in New York City.

The piece starts off quite chirpy but definitely still has that military march tinge to it. It’s not Jurassic Park or Star Wars but it is quite nice and fits the time period and role in the travelogue quite nicely. Do you agree?

8 comments on “A to Z Challenge: Y (John Williams’ film scores)

  1. Still only one of these movies that I’ve seen. I really do need to get out more. What are the chances that I’ve seen your last one tomorrow?

  2. Interesting to see some of the earlier projects…

    • I thought so too, John. Considering how young he was when he did this, I guess it isn’t a surprise he went on to great things.

  3. He had a very good beginning, didn’t he.

  4. Then it was a perfect first project. Everyone has to start somewhere.

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