Friday, May 20, 2022

Film Albums: The Great Race : Music from the Film ( 1965 )

Blake Edward's classic zany comedy The Great Race featured a great cast of actors ( Tony Curtis, Natalie Wood, Jack Lemmon, Peter Falk, etc ), great location filming, great set design, AND a great none other than Henry Mancini. This talented composer was at his peak in the 1960s and, as is evident by the prominence of his name on the cover of this album, was a top-selling recording artist in the music industry. 

Mancini's score for this film is as memorable as the movie itself and as you listen to this soundtrack recording you'll find yourself mentally picturing all the scenes in the movie. Hans Fantel's liner notes succinctly describe the score as a musical "slapstick memoir of an era when motorcars always backfired and all the bands went oom-pah!" 

Track Listing: 

Side One: 

Overture (He Shouldn't-A Hadn't-A, Oughtn't-a Swang On Me!; The Sweetheart Tree (Choral); The Great Race March) (03:35)

Push the Button, Max! (02:52)

The Royal Waltz (01:37)

Night, Night Sweet Prince (02:58)

They're Off! (01:28)

Side Two:

The Sweetheart Tree (Choral) (01:55)

The Great Race March (A Patriotic Medley) (01:48)

He Shouldn't-A, Hadn't-A, Ought'n'T-A Swang On Me (03:05)
    Vocal by Special Guest Star Dorothy Provine

Music To Become King By (02:33)

Cold Finger (02:24)

Pie-In-The Face Polka (02:21)

Top Music Picks: Overture, The Sweetheart Tree, He Shouldn't-a, Hadn't-a, Ought'nt-a Swang on Me

The Sweetheart Tree is an especially lovely piece with lyrics by the legendary songwriter Johnny Mercer. The choral version not only features wonderful vocals but a great player piano intro. 


  1. Awww, I love both the movie and the soundtrack, though this is one I don't own the album to. You can never go wrong with Henry Mancini, and he gives this movie the perfect touch! Now I want to watch this movie again, :-D

    1. Yes, isn't it a fun one? I don't think The Great Race or The Pink Panther would be half as entertaining without Henry Mancini's music.