Friday, January 27, 2017

Higher and Higher

Song - Higher and Higher
Artist(s) - Orange Power
Released - 1987
Primetime Usage - 1990
Contained on - SON 273 (Sound Giants - Industrial Prestige & Scenic Magnificence, Vol. 2), Sonoton SCD 6 (Sound Giants 1&2)
Featured Highlight - Oilers @ Chiefs, 1990

It's Pro Bowl week!  Are you all excited!?  No?  Well, anyway…  here's the other NFL Primetime track composed by Orange Power.  It's moodier than Future Champs, but has almost identical instrumentation.  I guess me choosing a song called "Higher and Higher" is ironic for the week of the Pro Bowl.  You could maybe think of it as, "you have to be high on drugs to enjoy the Pro Bowl."  That makes it fit.  Right?

Higher and Higher's clip features something a bit more exciting than the Pro Bowl.  In the video, Warren Moon put on a show by throwing for 527 yards in Arrowhead Stadium.  There's also a little bit of Mechatronics thrown in when Chris Berman discusses a replay review after the main highlight reel is done.  Enjoy!

Friday, January 20, 2017

Title Holder

Song - Title Holder
Artist(s) - David Reilly
Released - 1988
Primetime Usage - 1989
Featured Highlight - Packers @ Rams, 1989

The AFC Championship is this Sunday, and whoever wins that contest between the Steelers and the Patriots will set a new record for all-time Super Bowl appearances.   New England & Pittsburgh—along with Denver & Dallas—are currently tied with 8 trips to the big game, so the victor will be the lone NFL team with 9.  With that info in mind, it seems appropriate to post a song with the name "Title Holder."  Title Holder is the fourth & final NFL Primetime piece from David Reilly's Success album.  It has a more laid-back tempo than most, but that doesn't cause its intensity to suffer.  Also, like several tracks from this period, the slow intro & bridge sections were edited out by ESPN.  It fits well for games that involve good teams doing what they do best.

This week's highlight features the 1989 "Cardiac Pack" doing what they did best:  falling behind big and then surging back to make things close.  This clip also has what might be the worst line of Tom Jackson's stellar analyst career.  When describing notorious bust Tony Mandarich playing his first NFL game, Jackson says "He looks to be everything that's been advertised."  Even TJ can't get it right all the time.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Solar Winds

Song - Solar Winds
Artist(s) - Larry Lee Cansler
Released - 1985
Primetime Usage - 1988
Contained on - FirstCom UT103 (Lightning)
Featured Highlight - Eagles @ Buccaneers, 1988

We're going back to the Primetime rarities this week.  "Solar Winds," by Larry Lee Cansler (or just Larry Cansler for short), is an odd duck.  Most of NFL Primetime's songs are either rock (synth or otherwise) or edgy orchestral stuff.  Solar Winds, on the other hand, is a textbook-sounding '70s/'80s jazz-fusion number that one might expect to hear from an artist like Chick Corea.  I suppose, given that truth, that it's not surprising I've only seen one highlight with this piece.  It's not even a good highlight, either, unless you like watching guys in creamsicle uniforms play like garbage.  I did at least leave in the Pete-Axthelm-led postgame commentary to shore up the football side, though.

Solar Winds is contained on one of those hard-to-find Up Tempo albums from FirstCom, so you've got your work cut out for you if you want to find it.  A low-quality mp3 of the extra-long version of this song (over 7 minutes!) was housed on Cansler's website (, but that site has been dead for a few years now.  That means, as of today, Solar Winds does not exist online in any form that I'm aware of.

Friday, January 6, 2017

Playoff Showdown

Song - Showdown
Artist(s) - Robert J. Walsh
Released - 1996
Primetime Usage - 1997-05
Contained on - Hollywood Film Music HFML 15.04 (Reel Adventure)
Featured Highlight - Texans @ Titans, 2005

Whereas last week's highlight celebrated the awkwardness of Week 17 with a truly obscure NFL Primetime song, this week's highlight—the first of the 2016 playoff season—will showcase an instantly recognizable one.  "Showdown," the second featured track by Robert J. Walsh, is probably the most action-movie-esque piece in Primetime's history.  It doesn't work as a stand-alone piece on the level of a lot of of the more electronic or pop-sounding songs, but it fits as a mood-setter or accompaniment accent better than perhaps any other track on the show.  That's why it's surprising to me, after looking through a bunch of episodes with Showdown, that it wasn't used for very many good games.  The one I picked—a bout between two bad teams from late in NFL Primetime's final season—is more notable for its humorous, bumbling ending than anything else.  Well, I guess it would also be the late Steve McNair's last win as a Titan, but it's not like his career was anywhere near over at this point.  Anyway, enjoy the video.

As for obtaining this song in (legal) clean form…  good luck.  I have no idea where music from the Hollywood Film Music Library (founded by Walsh himself) can be accessed.  I touched on this in my Bad Company post, but it seems to be separate from the "Hollywood Music" library currently contained on FirstCom's website.  Showdown can easily be found on a some of the bootleg rips/youtube posts online, though.