Radiohead – "Spectre" 6. Like most of Wings' best stuff, it's essentially 3 songs in one, which helps to cover the spectrum of Bond theme moods: sentimental, frenetic, and charming. It just does nothing to prep me for a secret agent movie that's about to go down. Paul McCartney & Wings – "Live and Let Die", 1. That he doesn't lean into Bond musical tropes and still manages to turnaround a song that works within the franchise while simultaneously being enjoyable in and of itself is an achievement, and a tribute to Armstrong's enduring brilliance. But it lacks the gravitas and drama of the best theme songs. But where's the danger? It's Autotuned to hell, and actually has the singer inexplicably purring, "Sigmund Freud: Analyze this." Every classic action film series has great music, and James Bond is no different. That opening string motif is just so of-the-times. It's too happy, too sweet, too major-key. A good song, perhaps overshadowed by the film itself. This Guy Did a Year-Long Pushup Challenge, Dr. Sanjay Gupta's Best Tips for Brain Health, How Taking Up Running Kept Me Sane in 2020, Tanner Buchanan Talks 'Cobra Kai' Season 3, This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. Music, Film, TV and Political News Coverage. The good parts about this song? A new Bond movie fuels years of speculation. This is the worst of those entries. A bop is a bop is a bop. Nancy Sinatra – "You Only Live Twice" 5. Protean. Is Elizabeth and James' Love Doomed on Below Deck? The songs of 007. There's no big finish to latch on to, no earworm chorus that digs in and has you humming long after you've finished. They don't merely emulate John Barry's iconic instrumental theme, but they build off of it in dynamic, unexpected ways to create something both wholly original and complementary to the narrative of the debonair 007. Shirley Bassey is the Queen of Bond theme songs, with several entries on this list. While it's better than "Moonraker" and less iconic than "Goldfinger," this one is an earworm that will likely not leave your head any time soon. Billie Eilish - … Tom Jones seems like the perfect vocalist for a James Bond tune. … Plucked harp? It's way better as an end credits song than an opening credits song. An entirely serviceable, if not world-conquering entry by the '90s rockers. Goldfinger, the third film in the Bond series, was the first to include an original song over its opening credits, thus setting the standard for the franchise. And that it's both reminiscent of a classic Bond tune while also standing out as a '90s sex jam makes it the perfect combination. One of the most decadent Bond songs—and it's not even Bassey's best Bond song. Swanky horns? At best, it's an ersatz "Skyfall.". Moodiness helps. It starts off as a soothing ballad, then takes on what sounds like a rock opera cast off before evolving into a full-on funk jam. Bonds latest albums. Stealthy. Monro's voice is front-and-center, allowing it to really soar over the orchestra serving as a sonic foundation. It's boring! When she whispers "Sigmund Freud," I can't stop my face from scrunching up in frustration. Tina Turner totally makes sense for a Bond theme, and she oozes nostalgia for the film's original era on this cut for Pierce Brosnan's 1995 debut as 007. The slowed-down interlude is the best part, but it lasts like 10 seconds. Billie Eilish scares me (and I think she's supposed to). Paul McCartney & Wings – "Live and Let Die". Find the latest tracks, albums, and images from Bond. Jack White & Alicia Keyes – "Another Way to Die", 9. Spencer Dukoff is the deputy editor of content strategy at Men's Health where leads audience development efforts across all platforms for the magazine. The City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra recorded several albums with Bond music and performs in premieres and special events of Bond films. The sensuality of Sheryl Crow's Bond theme vaults it to the middle-of-the-pack. "A View to a Kill" holds the distinction of being the only James Bond theme song to hit No. Louis Armstrong – "We Have All the Time in the World", 7. Nearly All the James Bond Movies Now on Netflix. And don't get me wrong, it's a serviceable love song. Lulu's pop stylings made her a blue-eyed soul icon, and her biggest hits are peppy and vibrant. Daniel Craig's first outing as 007 was a hard reboot for the series, but the Casino Royale theme song by Chris Cornell didn't match the film's bold new vision for the globetrotting spy. It's also light, breezy, and a little sexy—much like many of Roger Moore's Bond movies. But while Eilish may still be a kid, she’s no amateur—as her 2020 Grammys sweep well proved. A decidedly 2nd rate Bond film with a top-class and gorgeous theme. There is also a song by A-ha. Yes, it's not as shadowy as the rest of the Bond catalog, but who cares? And while she's enigmatic and talented and probably going to get even bigger than she is right now, the most interesting parts of her debut album were the meshing of her voice and strange, engrossing production. But ‘Thunderball’, the third ‘attached’ theme song to a Bond film is strangely inert, especially when considered directly alongside Shirley Bassey’s ‘Goldfinger’. Instead, she phoned in this dance track for Pierce Brosnan's last (and worst) Bond film, Die Another Day. As a member of the Jimmy Wakely Trio and as a session musician, he was an important support musician in dozens of B Westerns, working alongside Wakely, Tex Ritter, and Johnny Mack Brown. Another Bond song in the bunch that earned an Oscar nomination, Sheena Easton's contribution to the franchise remains one of the biggest hits of the Bond themes. Sometimes strings, sometimes horns. Probably the most well-known Bond theme song in recent years, Adele recorded Skyfall shortly after the massive success of her second album 21 – … Ever since Dr.No hit theaters in 1962, the James Bond movies have given us more memorable songs than any other franchise. From the most recent film in the series, the generally mediocre Spectre, Sam Smith's Oscar-winning tune is, well, just fine. This song feels more like a standard than any of the rest thanks to Louis Armstrong's iconic vocals. And that's okay! "The Living Daylights" is not even a top-5 A-ha song, and that is saying a lot for a one-hit wonder. But a brand-new 007 picture also invites another question: Who’s going to sing the theme song? What familiar faces from MI6 will return? It really just sounds like a sad Sam Smith ballad. This lush ballad suits Sean Connery's Bond exceptionally well, and effectively transports the listener back to the original era. Coupled with strummed acoustic guitar and an electric guitar playing that same opening string melody, Nancy Sinatra's Bond song takes you right back to the Swinging '60s. It may be the best song on this list, but it's not the best Bond theme song because it has an entire life outside of the film. But while hammy, out-of-date movies can make for very fun watching, corny tunes don’t seem to hold up quite as well. Bond music has inspired a number of cover albums in a variety of genres, including the 2007 album Mister Bond – A Jazzy Cocktail of Ice Cold Themes (lounge), Shaken and Stirred: The David Arnold James Bond Project featuring David Arnold collaborating with several contemporary artists. But sadly, there is a lot of competition for that title. How does Eilish stack up against other theme songs from over nearly 60 years of Bond movie history? Despite being just under four minutes long, the big orchestrations and the freewheeling compositions make the song feel big and epic in scope. Surely. It might be the most anti-James Bond theme song in the entire franchise, which serves this track well. It's a nice song, but not a standout. Jack White & Alicia Keyes – "Another Way to Die", 8. This captures less 007, the action star and more 007, the man of mystery. Then, whenever a James Bond nears the end of his run, practically every British actor under the sun is rumored to be contending for the big role. 007 James Bond Music is a English album released on Oct 2012. Bond has been described as the best-selling string quartet of all time, selling over 4 million records. Carly Simon – "Nobody Does It Better". While Sinatra wasn't the first choice (Bond producers originally wanted Aretha Franklin, but then capitalized on the up-and-coming Sinatra who had a recent hit with "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'"), the theme song ultimately became one of her best-known hits. Nowadays, only top artists get asked to sing the James Bond theme song, including Adele, Madonna, and Sam Smith. It's unfortunate, however, that—much like the film it represents—it's not exactly a standout in the franchise. It's gauzy, a clear throwback to classic Bond ballads. Britain's Royal Philharmonic Orchestrareleased an album of several Bond songs p… Diamonds Are Forever might be best known for being Sean Connery's final film in the Eon-produced films (he'd return in 1983's Never Say Never Again, a sort-of remake of Thunderball), it also served as Shirley Bassey's second outing as a Bond theme song singer. Our product picks are editor-tested, expert-approved. Jack White and Alicia Keyes's duet is the only two-hander in the film franchise, and the Quantum of Solace theme is one of the good true rock songs in the Bond catalog. But when a Bond theme is more about the capital-V Vibe that Bond evokes, it has a way higher success rate. It starts off as a soothing ballad, then takes on what sounds like a... 2. No, was released in 1962, the "Bond song" was a simple theme, but in the decades since, it's become an unparalleled honor. Having sold in excess of 4 million records worldwide, BOND is the best-selling string quartet of all time. Years later, it feels like the song is overpowered by Adele herself, who at the time was coasting on the success of her record-breaking album 21. Points for creativity, but the guys from "Take On Me" are probably the strangest choice for a Bond theme on this list. It's a polarizing song: extremely true to Cornell's instincts as an artist coupled with Bondian horn blasts, but maybe too Buzz Cuts for diehard Bond-lovers. It's just not a Bond song! After the Barry numbers, the quality of the music declines sharply, with the only really first-rate non-Barry Bond theme being Bill Conti's "For Your Eyes Only". Perhaps to announce a grittier 007, the late Chris Cornell was brought things into grunge things up. This sets the template for great Bond songs, and holds up exceedingly well as a cinematic masterwork. Asking her to sing a more conventional ballad over an orchestra is a treat in terms of stretching her artistic skill set. Melancholy. It's really shocking that Adele's 2012 track was the first Bond theme to win an Oscar for Best Original Song. James Bond doesn't drive across country smiling to AM radio—he's over the legal limit and being pursued by some ridiculous foe. Together Tania Davis (violin), Eos Counsell (violin), Elspeth Hanson (viola) and Gay-Yee Westerhoff (cello) are BOND, the original electric string quartet. Johnny Bond had several successful facets to a career that lasted over 30 years. interestingly, the formula works for ballads as well as rockers. Her ballad, "No Time to Die," will accompany a film by the same name. A guitar-based pop-rock quartet on Sony's Work label. Don't get me wrong—Armstrong is a legend. But never forget the classics: Play, Classified, Shine, Born, Bond Remixed, Explosive: The Best of Bond Carly Simon – "Nobody Does It Better", 15. 2. It's there. Sure, it has all of the trappings of a treacly '80s love song (the production is bloated with keyboards and backing vocals), but Knight still makes it sexy—and the video proves she can pull of a tux pretty well. Every James Bond Theme Song, Ranked 1. This also loses points because it sounds like a sorta-good Duran Duran song that just happened to be placed in a James Bond movie, as opposed to something that stretched the band to be more creative. Gladys Knight's sultry R&B nails that facet of the protagonist's character. This music-forward approach is unique to Bond, which sets the tone with an original song - usually delivered by one of the biggest stars of the day - in the opening credits. Billie Eilish recorded the theme for the 25th Bond film, No Time to Die, at just 18 years old, making her the youngest artist ever to perform an original 007 theme tune. Here's a track listing for the CD version of a soon-to-be-released music collection of James Bond movie theme songs. This song gets high placement for the simple fact that if you were to tell me, "Hey, Louis Armstrong did a Bond song," my assumption is that it would be very, very bad. While it incorporates The Spy Who Loves Me in its lyrics, "Nobody Does It... 3. Adele is our generation's most gifted torch singer, and she makes almost too much sense as a Bond chanteuse. The 40 Greatest Comedy Series of All Time, Loungewear Is the Undisputed Winner of 2020, When a Bottle of Costco Bourbon Is Something More, This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. It's a top-notch McCartney song that just so happened to be in a Bond film, not the other way around. Music, Film, TV and Political News Coverage. We may earn a commission from these links. There's more rock 'n' roll swagger in this duet than the Bond franchise is accustomed. Shirley Bassey – "Diamonds Are Forever", 1. James Bond on WhoSampled. It's also one of two Duran Duran No. While it incorporates The Spy Who Loves Me in its lyrics, "Nobody Does It Better" was the first Bond theme song with a different title than the film. The build-up to the chorus makes me want to pump my fist in the air and crush some air drums. Co-written by crooner Anthony Newley, the song was inspired by 'Mack the Knife' and was produced by Beatles legend George Martin. This was the song that made James Bond's theme music come alive. There's a reason this one feels like an outlier among the other Bond tunes: While it was written by Bond composer John Barry, it wasn't used in the opening credits of On Her Majesty's Secret Service—which is often the most overlooked Bond film since it's the only one that starred actor George Lazenby. There are Oscar-winning tunes among this batch, as well as chart-topping radio hits. The group made their movie debut playing themselves in a scene in Rowan Atkinson's James Bond spoof Johnny Englishfor which they also contributed the track … Including Madonna, Jack White, Shirley Bassey, and everyone in between. The sex? 75 Greatest Boy Band Songs of All Time From the Jackson 5 to BTS: here are the most scream-worthy boy band songs That it works as a standalone song—one that got an equally memorable cover from Guns N' Roses—proves this track is bigger than the movie franchise for which it was written. We may earn a commission through links on our site. I get the feeling that the Bond producers had the same dream, but they couldn't book him for the gig and instead got... A-ha. And Shirley Bassey's booming vocals, paired with the brassy orchestrations, pull of the impossible: She can make these ridiculous lyrics, and the ludicrous title, actually work. I love the ambition of asking Cornell, one of the best rock voices of his generation, to perform a Bond song, even if it didn't result in a home run. That wah-wah secret agent guitar? Sam Smith is adequately brooding to deliver it. Duran Duran - 'A View to a Kill' But it simply sounds like a rehash of its predecessor, an unremarkable ballad about a man who strikes "like thunderball," which doesn't actually make any sense. Great Bond theme songs can overshadow mediocre Bond movies, while mediocre Bond theme songs can start great Bond movies on the wrong foot. Is it good? In the first two movies, they were something of an after thought, but Shirley's theme tune to 'Goldfinger' went POW! While Turner's vocals aren't as powerful as Bassey's, her instrument blends well with the big orchestrations. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at piano.io, The Case for Regé-Jean Page to Play James Bond, Pierce Brosnan Deserved Better Bond Movies, A Brief History of James Bond's 007 Designation, Hollywood Mours Sean Connery: 'A Legend On Screen, Sean Connery Was So Much More Than James Bond, Sean Connery, Beloved James Bond Star, Dies at 90, Everything We Know About the Next James Bond Movie, 12. Shirley Bassey – "Diamonds Are Forever" 2. But the whole tune comes off as unnecessarily hokey, especially with lyrics that are lacking any and all nuance. "Live and Let Die" is unlike any other Bond theme song (or really like most songs), and that's precisely why it takes the number one spot. That voice! While even the singer's biggest fans are unlikely to consider "You Know My Name" one of his best tunes, the high-energy song has an exotic swagger that fits Bond perfectly and the horn motifs hark back to the classic Bond era. Billie Eilish is the latest star to join the Bond theme song club, fresh off being this year's Grammy darling due to the success of her debut LP, When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? Not awful, but easily the least memorable of her contributions to the Bond pantheon. From "Goldfinger" to "No Time to Die," we break down the best tracks playing alongside 007. But she nails the sultry vocals with a particularly '90s ennui. "Live and Let Die" is certainly the song out of this batch that my dad would most often crank up really loud in his Saab with my sister and I riding in the backseat. Men's Health participates in various affiliate marketing programs, which means we may get paid commissions on editorially chosen products purchased through our links to retailer sites. It's so evocative, building layer upon layer effortlessly, anchored by a first-class vocal performance from Bassey. Wrong movie franchise, lady! From "The Spy Who Loved Me." 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