Lalo Schifrin

Lalo Schifrin
In concert with the Big Band of the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz Köln, 2006
Background information
Birth name Boris Claudio Schifrin
Born (1932-06-21) June 21, 1932 (age 83)
Origin Buenos Aires, Argentina
Genres Bossa nova, jazz, bebop, rock, classical
Occupation(s) Musician, composer, arranger, conductor
Instruments Piano
Years active 1950–present
Labels Tico, Roulette, Audio Fidelity, MGM, Verve, Colpix, Colgems, Dot, Warner Bros., Paramount, EntrActe, CTI, Tabu, Palo Alto, Atlantic, Aleph
Notable instruments
Piano

Lalo Schifrin (born June 21, 1932) is an Argentine pianist, composer, arranger and conductor. He is best known for his film and TV scores, such as the "Theme from Mission: Impossible". He has received four Grammy Awards and six Oscar nominations. Schifrin, associated with the jazz music genre, is also noted for work with Clint Eastwood in the late 1960s, 1970s and 1980s, particularly the Dirty Harry films.

    Early life

    Schifrin was born Boris Claudio Schifrin in Buenos Aires to Jewish parents. His father, Luis Schifrin, led the second violin section of the orchestra at the Teatro Colón for three decades. At the age of six, Schifrin began a six-year course of study on piano with Enrique Barenboim, the father of the pianist and conductor Daniel Barenboim. At age 16, Schifrin began studying piano with the Greek-Russian expatriate Andreas Karalis, former head of the Kiev Conservatory, and harmony with Argentine composer Juan Carlos Paz. During this time, Schifrin also became interested in jazz.

    Although Schifrin studied sociology and law at the University of Buenos Aires, it was music that captured his attention. At age 20, he successfully applied for a scholarship to the Paris Conservatoire. At night he played jazz in the Paris clubs. In 1955, Schifrin played piano with Argentinian bandoneon giant Ástor Piazzolla, and represented his country at the International Jazz Festival in Paris.

    Later life and career

    After returning home to Argentina, Schifrin formed a jazz orchestra, a 16-piece band that became part of a popular weekly variety show on Buenos Aires TV. Schifrin also began accepting other film, television and radio assignments. In 1956, Schifrin met Dizzy Gillespie and offered to write an extended work for Gillespie's big band. Schifrin completed the work, Gillespiana, in 1958 (it was recorded in 1960). Later that year Schifrin began working as an arranger for Xavier Cugat's popular Latin dance orchestra.

    While in New York in 1960, Schifrin again met Gillespie, who had by this time disbanded his big band for financial reasons. Gillespie invited Schifrin to fill the vacant piano chair in his quintet. Schifrin immediately accepted and moved to New York City. Schifrin wrote a second extended composition for Gillespie, The New Continent, which was recorded in 1962. In 1963, MGM, which had Schifrin under contract, offered the composer his first Hollywood film assignment with the African adventure Rhino!. Schifrin moved to Hollywood late that year. He also radically re-arranged the theme for the popular NBC-TV series The Man from U.N.C.L.E., altering original composer Jerry Goldsmith's theme to a jazzy melody emphasizing flutes and exotic percussion, which wound up winning the Emmy award for Best TV Theme in 1965.

    One of Schifrin's most recognizable and enduring compositions is the theme music for the long-running TV series Mission: Impossible. It is a distinctive tune written in the uncommon 5/4 time signature. Similarly, Schifrin's theme for the hugely successful Mannix private eye TV show was composed a year later in a 3/4 waltz time; Schifrin composed several other jazzy and bluesy numbers over the years as additional incidental music for the show.

    Schifrin's "Tar Sequence" from his Cool Hand Luke score (also written in 5/4) was the longtime theme for the Eyewitness News broadcasts on New York station WABC-TV and other ABC affiliates, as well as National Nine News in Australia. CBS Television used part of the theme of his St. Ives soundtrack for its golf broadcasts in the 1970s and early 1980s.

    Schifrin's score for Coogan's Bluff in 1968 was the beginning of a long association with Clint Eastwood and director Don Siegel. Schifrin's strong jazz blues riffs were evident in Dirty Harry.

    Schifrin's working score for 1973's The Exorcist was rejected by the film's director, William Friedkin. Schifrin had written six minutes of difficult and heavy music for the initial film trailer, but audiences were reportedly frightened by the combination of sights and sounds. Warner Bros. executives told Friedkin to instruct Schifrin to tone it down with softer music, but Friedkin did not relay the message. Schifrin's final score was thrown out into the parking lot. Schifrin reported in an interview that working with Friedkin was one of the most unpleasant experiences in his life.

    In the 1998 film Tango, Schifrin returned to the tango music he had grown familiar with while working as Ástor Piazzolla's pianist in the mid-1950s. He brought traditional tango songs to the film as well as introducing compositions of his own in which tango is fused with jazz elements.

    In 1997, the composer founded Aleph Records.

    He also wrote the main theme for Splinter Cell: Pandora Tomorrow.

    Schifrin made a cameo appearance in Red Dragon (2002) as an orchestra conductor.

    He is also widely sampled in hip-hop and trip-hop songs, such as Heltah Skeltah's "Prowl" or Portishead's "Sour Times". Both songs sample Schifrin's "Danube Incident", one of many themes he composed for specific episodes of the Mission: Impossible TV series.

    On April 23, 2007, Lalo Schifrin presented a concert of film music for the Festival du Film Jules Verne Aventures (aka Festival Jules Verne), at Le Grand Rex theatre in Paris, France – Europe's biggest movie theater – that was caught by Festival leaders for a 73 and a half minute CD named Lalo Schifrin: Le Concert à Paris.

    In 2010, a fictionalised account of Lalo Schifrin's creation of the Mission: Impossible tune was featured in a Lipton TV commercial aired in a number of countries around the world.

    Alternative hip hop group Blue Scholars recorded a track entitled "Lalo Schifrin" on their third album Cinemetropolis (2011).

    Awards

    To date, Lalo Schifrin has won four Grammy Awards (with twenty-one nominations), one Cable ACE Award, one Emmy Award, and received six Oscar nominations, and has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

    Discography

    Albums

    • 1957: (Epic)
    • 1959: Piano Español (Tico) reissued as Lalolé: The Latin Sound of Lalo Schifrin (Roulette)
    • 1962: Lalo = Brilliance (Roulette)
    • 1962: Bossa Nova: New Brazilian Jazz (Audio Fidelity)
    • 1962: Piano, Strings and Bossa Nova (MGM)
    • 1963: Samba Para Dos with Bob Brookmeyer (Verve)
    • 1963: Between Broadway & Hollywood (MGM)
    • 1964: Explorations with Louis Bellson (Roulette)
    • 1964: New Fantasy (Verve)
    • 1965: Jazz Suite on the Mass Texts with Paul Horn (RCA Victor)
    • 1965: Once a Thief and Other Themes (Verve)
    • 1966: The Dissection and Reconstruction of Music From the Past as Performed By the Inmates of Lalo Schifrin's Demented Ensemble as a Tribute to the Memory of the Marquis De Sade (Verve)
    • 1968: There's a Whole Lalo Schifrin Goin' On (Dot)
    • 1971: Rock Requiem (Verve)
    • 1976: Black Widow (CTI)
    • 1977: Towering Toccata (CTI)
    • 1978: Gypsies (Tabu)
    • 1979: No One Home (Tabu)
    • 1982: Ins and Outs (Palo Alto)
    • 1992: Jazz Meets the Symphony (Atlantic)
    • 1993: More Jazz Meets the Symphony (Atlantic)
    • 1993: Cantos Aztecas (Pro Arte)
    • 1995: Firebird: Jazz Meets the Symphony No. 3 (Four Winds)
    • 1996: (Aleph)
    • 1997: (Urtext Digital Classics)
    • 1998: (Aleph)
    • 1998: (Aleph)
    • 1999: (Aleph)
    • 1999: (Aleph)
    • 1999: (Aleph)
    • 1999: (Aleph)
    • 2000: (Aleph)
    • 2000: (Aleph)
    • 2000: (Aleph)
    • 2001: (Naxos)
    • 2005: (Aleph)
    • 2011: (Aleph)

    Soundtrack albums

    • 1964: Gone with the Wave (soundtrack) (Colpix)
    • 1965: The Liquidator (soundtrack) (MGM)
    • 1965: The Cincinnati Kid (soundtrack) (MGM)
    • 1966: Murderer's Row (soundtrack) (Colgems)
    • 1967: Cool Hand Luke (soundtrack) (Dot)
    • 1967: Sol Madrid (soundtrack) (MGM)
    • 1967: Music from Mission: Impossible (Dot)
    • 1968: The Fox (soundtrack) (Warner Bros.)
    • 1968: More Mission: Impossible (Paramount)
    • 1968: Mannix (Paramount)
    • 1968: Bullitt (soundtrack) (Warner Bros.)
    • 1969: Che! (soundtrack) (Tetragrammaton)
    • 1970: Kelly's Heroes (soundtrack) (MGM)
    • 1973: Enter the Dragon (soundtrack) (Warner Bros.)
    • 1977: Voyage of the Damned (soundtrack) (Entr'Acte)
    • 1977: Rollercoaster (soundtrack) (MCA)
    • 1979: The Amityville Horror (soundtrack) (American International Pictures, Inc.)
    • 2005: Caveman ( 1981 film )

    Albums featured

    With Cannonball Adderley

    • The Cannonball Adderley Quintet & Orchestra (Capitol, 1970) - composer, conductor and arranger

    With Maurice André

    • Trompettissimo (Erato, 1994) - arranger and conductor

    With Count Basie

    With Louis Bellson

    • Thunderbird (Impulse!, 1965) - arranger

    With Luiz Bonfá

    • Luiz Bonfa Plays and Sings Bossa Nova (Verve, 1963) - arranger

    With Candido Camero

    • Conga Soul (Roulette, 1962) - piano, composer, arranger

    With José Carreras, Plácido Domingo and Luciano Pavarotti

    • The Three Tenors in Concert (London, 1990) - arranger
    • The Three Tenors in Concert 1994 (Atlantic, 1994) - arranger
    • (Atlantic, 1998) - arranger

    With Dizzy Gillespie

    • Gillespiana (Verve, 1960) - composer, piano and arranger
    • An Electrifying Evening with the Dizzy Gillespie Quintet (Verve, 1961) - piano
    • Carnegie Hall Concert (Verve, 1961) - piano
    • (1961) - piano
    • Dizzy on the French Riviera (Philips, 1962) - piano, composer and arranger
    • New Wave (Philips, 1962) - piano, arranger
    • The New Continent (Limelight, 1962) - piano, composer and arranger
    • Something Old, Something New (Philips, 1963) - arranger
    • Dizzy Gillespie and the Double Six of Paris (Philips, 1963) - arranger
    • Free Ride (Pablo, 1977) - keyboards, composer, arranger and conductor

    With Eddie Harris

    • Bossa Nova (Vee-Jay, 1962) - piano, composer, arranger

    With Al Hirt

    • Latin in the Horn (RCA Victor, 1966) - conductor and arranger

    With Jimmy Smith

    • The Cat (Verve Records, 1964) - conductor and arranger
    • The Cat Strikes Again (LaserLight Records, 1980)

    With Sarah Vaughan

    With Cal Tjader

    Film scores

    Feature films, documentaries, and short subjects for which Schifrin provided original music. These include films for which he composed the entire score, and others for which he composed the theme or other partial contributions

    • 1957: Venga a bailar el rock
    • 1958: The Boss
    • 1964: Joy House
    • 1964: Rhino!
    • 1964: See How They Run (TV movie)
    • 1965: Blindfold
    • 1965: Dark Intruder
    • 1965: Once a Thief
    • 1965: The Liquidator
    • 1966: I Deal in Danger
    • 1966: Murderers' Row
    • 1966: The Doomsday Flight (TV movie)
    • 1966: The Making of a President: 1964 (TV documentary)
    • 1966: Way...Way Out
    • 1967: Cool Hand Luke
    • 1967: How I Spent My Summer Vacation (TV movie)
    • 1967: Sullivan's Empire (TV movie)
    • 1967: The Fox
    • 1967: The President's Analyst
    • 1967: The Venetian Affair
    • 1967: Who's Minding the Mint?
    • 1968: Braddock (TV movie)
    • 1968: Bullitt
    • 1968: Coogan's Bluff
    • 1968: Hell in the Pacific
    • 1968: Sol Madrid
    • 1968: The Brotherhood
    • 1968: The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich (TV documentary)
    • 1968: Where Angels Go, Trouble Follows
    • 1969: Che!
    • 1969: Eye of the Cat
    • 1969: Mission Impossible Versus the Mob
    • 1970: I Love My Wife
    • 1970: Imago
    • 1970: Kelly's Heroes
    • 1970: Pussycat, Pussycat, I Love You
    • 1970: The Aquarians (TV movie)
    • 1970: The Mask of Sheba (TV movie)
    • 1970: WUSA
    • 1971: Dirty Harry
    • 1971: Escape (TV movie)
    • 1971: Mrs. Pollifax-Spy
    • 1971: Pretty Maids All in a Row
    • 1971: The Beguiled
    • 1971: The Christian Licorice Store
    • 1971: The Hellstrom Chronicle
    • 1971: THX 1138
    • 1972: Joe Kidd
    • 1972: Prime Cut
    • 1972: Rage
    • 1972: The Wrath of God
    • 1972: Welcome Home, Johnny Bristol (TV movie)
    • 1973: Charley Varrick
    • 1973: Egan (TV movie)
    • 1973: Enter the Dragon
    • 1973: Harry in Your Pocket
    • 1973: Hit!
    • 1973: Hunter (TV movie)
    • 1973: Magnum Force
    • 1973: The Neptune Factor
    • 1974: Golden Needles
    • 1974: Man on a Swing
    • 1974: Night Games (TV movie)
    • 1974: The Four Musketeers
    • 1974: Up from the Ape (documentary)
    • 1975: Delancey Street: The Crisis Within (TV movie)
    • 1975: Foster and Laurie (TV movie)
    • 1975: Guilty or Innocent: The Sam Sheppard Murder Case (TV movie)
    • 1975: The Master Gunfighter
    • 1976: Brenda Starr (TV movie)
    • 1976: Sky Riders
    • 1976: Special Delivery
    • 1976: St. Ives
    • 1976: The Eagle Has Landed
    • 1976: Voyage of the Damned
    • 1977: Day of the Animals
    • 1977: Good Against Evil (TV movie)
    • 1977: Rollercoaster
    • 1977: Telefon
    • 1978: Nunzio
    • 1978: Return from Witch Mountain
    • 1978: The Cat from Outer Space
    • 1978: The Manitou
    • 1978: The Nativity (TV movie)
    • 1978: The President's Mistress (TV movie)
    • 1979: Boulevard Nights
    • 1979: Escape to Athena
    • 1979: Institute for Revenge (TV movie)
    • 1979: Love and Bullets
    • 1979: The Amityville Horror
    • 1979: The Concorde ... Airport '79
    • 1980: Brubaker
    • 1980: Serial
    • 1980: The Big Brawl
    • 1980: The Competition
    • 1980: The Nude Bomb
    • 1980: When Time Ran Out
    • 1981: Buddy Buddy
    • 1981: Caveman
    • 1981: La pelle
    • 1981: Loophole
    • 1981: The Fridays of Eternity
    • 1982: A Stranger Is Watching
    • 1982: Amityville II: The Possession
    • 1982: Class of 1984
    • 1982: Falcon's Gold (TV movie)
    • 1982: Fast-Walking
    • 1982: The Seduction
    • 1982: Victims (TV movie)
    • 1982: Wait Until Dark (TV movie)
    • 1983: Doctor Detroit
    • 1983: Princess Daisy (TV movie)
    • 1983: Rita Hayworth: The Love Goddess (TV movie)
    • 1983: Starflight: The Plane That Couldn't Land (TV movie)
    • 1983: Sudden Impact
    • 1983: The Osterman Weekend
    • 1983: The Sting II
    • 1984: Spraggue (TV movie)
    • 1984: Tank
    • 1985: Bad Medicine
    • 1985: Bridge Across Time (TV movie)
    • 1985: Command 5 (TV movie)
    • 1985: Private Sessions (TV movie)
    • 1985: The Mean Season
    • 1985: The New Kids
    • 1986: Beverly Hills Madam (TV movie)
    • 1986: Black Moon Rising
    • 1986: Kung Fu: The Movie (TV movie)
    • 1986: The Ladies Club
    • 1986: Triplecross (TV movie)
    • 1987: (TV movie)
    • 1987: The Fourth Protocol
    • 1988: Berlín Blues
    • 1988: Shakedown on the Sunset Strip (TV movie)
    • 1988: The Dead Pool
    • 1988: Earth Star Voyager (TV mini series)
    • 1989: Original Sin (TV movie)
    • 1989: Return from the River Kwai
    • 1989: The Neon Empire (TV movie)
    • 1990: Face to Face] (TV movie)
    • 1991: F/X2
    • 1993: The Beverly Hillbillies
    • 1995: Manhattan Merengue!
    • 1996: Scorpion Spring
    • 1997: Money Talks
    • 1998: Rush Hour
    • 1998: Something to Believe In
    • 1998: Tango
    • 2001: Culture Clash: West Meets East (video documentary short)
    • 2001: Jackie Chan's Hong Kong Tour (video documentary short)
    • 2001: Longshot
    • 2001: Rush Hour 2
    • 2002: Tom the Cat (short)
    • 2003: Bringing Down the House
    • 2004: After the Sunset
    • 2004: Biyik (short)
    • 2004: The Bridge of San Luis Rey
    • 2006: Abominable
    • 2007: Rush Hour 3
    • 2007: Ultrasordine (short)
    • 2008: Autour de 'Rush Hour 3' en 80 mots (video documentary)
    • 2009: Mission Impossible (short)
    • 2011: No Rest for the Wicked: A Basil & Moebius Adventure (short)
    • 2011: Love Story
    • 2013:
    • 2015: Tales of Halloween (main title composer)

    Television scores

    See also

    • List of music arrangers
    • List of jazz arrangers

    References

    External links

    • Lalo Schifrin's official website
    • Lalo Schifrin at the Internet Movie Database
    • Cinema Retro attends Lalo Schifrin's London concert
    • Aleph Records Discography - record label operated by Schifrin
    • Two Interviews with Lalo Schifrin by Bruce Duffie (June 23, 1988, and October 9, 2003)
    • Lalo Schifrin Interview for WeirdMusic.net / UKtop40Charts.com Magazine
    • Lalo Schifrin interview video at the Archive of American Television
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