Music - Goldfinger
Music composed, arranged and conducted by: John Barry
Song Lyrics: Leslie Bricusse and Anthony Newley
Song Performed By: Shirley Bassey
James Bond Theme: Monty Norman
Orchestra conductor: Sid Margo
Guitar solos: Vic Flick
Saxophone solos: Johnny Scott
Music recorded at CTS Studios, Bayswater, London in July
Engineer: John Richards
UK Single: Charted 15/10/64 reaching #21 (total 9 weeks)
USA Single: Charted 23/01/65 reaching #8
UK Album: Charted 31/10/65 reaching #14
USA Album: Charted 12/12/64 reaching #1 for 3 weeks (total
Online (Amazon USA)
Online (Amazon UK)
The title track was first performed by Anthony Newley, who wrote
the lyrics to John Barry's music (this "jazz" version
was later released on the "The Best Of James Bond –
30th Anniversary Limited Edition" album). Shirley Bassey
recorded the version used in the film on 20th August 1964. The
original mono version of the commercially released single can
now be found on the album "Goldsinger - The Best of Shirley
Bassey", along with the common stereo version.
The "Goldfinger" single sold over a million copies
in the USA on the United Artists label and earned Bassey a coveted
gold disc in May 1965. Released in the UK on the Columbia label,
the single performed modestly reaching number 21.
Shirley Bassey said about Goldfinger: "John Barry
wrote the music. We were touring in England at the time
and he was conducting for me. One day he said, 'There is
this new song for the James Bond film Goldfinger and we'd
like you to do it. I know your rule that you will never
listen to a song unless there are words. There are no words,
I must warn you - there's only the music, which I have done.
And we're waiting on the lyric.'
And because we had such a wonderful relationship on our
tour I said to John, 'Well, I'll listen to it. I'll break
my rule.' And thank God I did, because the moment he played
the music to me, I got goose pimples, and I told him, 'I
don't care what the words are. I'll do it.' And fortunately
the words were great."
Composer John Barry shared a flat with actor Michael Caine, and
during Barry's work on Goldfinger, Caine recalled in his autobiography
of being kept awake though the night. In the morning Caine found
Barry slumped over his piano having just finished Goldfinger.
However, not everyone fell in love with Barry's work on the film.
According to Barry, producer Harry Saltzman hated the Goldfinger
theme and much of his work, "Harry would start with, 'This
is crap!' And it went downhill from there".
Despite criticism from Saltzman, Barry has said that "Goldfinger"
is his personal favourite of all his Bond theme. "Shirley
Bassey was perfect casting, she brought such conviction to it."
It was the first 007 film that he was given full musical authority,
and Barry commented that "Goldfinger" was the first
time that "the musical style [in a Bond] really came together.
Everything culminated with that film."