Midnight Cowboy: Music From The Motion Picture
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Played during the scene when Joe boards a bus for New York, those lines seem ironic. After all, the cowboy is leaving the warm climes of Texas, dressed like a hired hand from a rodeo. It is only at the end of the movie that the song’s meaning becomes clear.
The Birth of Dustin Hoffman". California Birth Records, 1905 Thru 1995. Archived from the original on November 29, 2014 . Retrieved February 14, 2015. Midnight Cowboy (1969)". IMDb. 25 May 1969. Archived from the original on March 16, 2014 . Retrieved March 14, 2014. Midnight Cowboy Film Locations". On the Set of New York. Archived from the original on January 7, 2015 . Retrieved February 14, 2015.Wear, Mike (October 8, 1969). "Sept. Totals Soar to High Plateau; 'Cowboy,' 'True Grit,' 'Easy Rider,' 'Daddy,' 'Oliver,' 'Curious' Leaders". Variety. p.7.
Barry was employed by EMI from 1959 - 1962 arranging for its singers including Adam Faith. He also composed songs and scores for movies starring Faith. His first film was Beat Girl in 1960. Barry also composed the music for another Faith film, Never Let Go, orchestrated the score for Mix Me a Person, and composed, arranged and conducted the score for The Amorous Prawn. The first song, “Everybody’s Talkin’,” almost didn't make it into the movie, had Bob Dylan's "Lay Lady Lay" been available. But Dylan was unable to write his tune in time therefore "Everybody's Talkin'" made the cut, and I think the movie is all the better for it. It was written by Fred Neil and sung by Harry Nilsson, at the time an up-and-coming performer—this song would make him a star. The song has a slow, relaxed feel about it but buried underneath lies a restlessness that can only be soothed by a change of scenery.
Quartet Records, in collaboration with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Capitol Records, Universal Music Enterprises and the Phil Ramone estate, present an expanded 2-CD edition of the iconic score for the landmark film Midnight Cowboy, directed by John Schlesinger in 1969, starring Dustin Hoffman and Jon Voight, and winner of three Academy Awards, including Best Picture. RPM Top 100 Singles - January 17, 1970" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on June 12, 2012 . Retrieved February 19, 2019.
Heylin, Clinton (1991). Dylan: Behind The Shades: The Biography. New York: Viking Books. p.193. ISBN 978-0-6708-36024. Midnight Cowboy was one of the first film to make extensive use of pop artists and songs. John Barry supervised the music and composed the score, winning a Grammy for Best Instrumental Theme. "That movie is still shown at the cinema school at UCLA as the epitome of how songs should be used in the movies," Barry said in 1997. "We only bought in a couple of songs, Everybody's Talkin', sung by Harry Nilsson, and a John Lennon song, and for the rest we got young songwriters to score the scenes with songs. The songs work because they were written for the movie."The song “Everybody’s Talkin’,” written by Fred Neil in 1966, was selected as a main theme for the film, newly recorded with arrangements by George Tipton and performed by Harry Nilsson. It became an instant classic and ultimately a generational symbol.