NBC’s Today dumps The Mission in favor of theme by Non-Stop Music


Today_2012This morning NBC’s Today Show debuted a new opening theme which replaces the John Williams’ fanfare that has in one way or another opened the broadcast since 1985. While the graphics have remained the same, the music accompanying them is a variation of the music that Today has been using for election broadcasts and other special editions. That music was composed by Adam Gubman on behalf of Non-Stop Music so it is likely he is also behind the particular arrangement that is currently used as the opening theme. You can hear the new opening theme here.

NBC hasn’t commented on the reason for replacing the iconic theme music. But Today has had a rough year. It was surpassed in the ratings by ABC’s Good Morning America in part due to the rocky transition from co-anchor Ann Curry to Savannah Guthrie. With its status as the most profitable program on network television at stake, the Today team likely wants to make clear that the show has improved. (“Warmer, more positive, and less sensational,” according to media reporter Howard Kurtz this morning.)

The version of Williams’ Today open that was used up until today, was a relatively recent version. In late 2011 John Williams rearranged the Meet the Press theme when, at the same time, he re-recorded the Today open. While Williams’ music is synonymous with the Today Show, there have been two previous attempts to replace it: in 1994 (with the debut of Studio 1A) and in 2004. (You can see a clip of the 1994 open on YouTube.) Whether the change will stick this time is unknown right now.

Speaking of new theme music, The Huffington Post reports that MSNBC’s NewsNation with Tamron Hall also received some new music. It is composed by none other than legendary pop icon Prince.

   17 Comments


17 Comments

  1. For the Today Show, NBC News is dumping the Scherzo for Today (The Mission Part III) opening cut for Non-Stop Music? THIS SUCKS!

    Along with other cuts from The Mission, John Williams’s theme package has been a part of NBC News since 1985.

    That fanfare for the Today woke us up, and got our day off the an awesome start, for 28 years.

    Now, Today show is dumping that John Williams fanfare for Non-Stop Music opening cut?

    WHAT THE F$#%^K?

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  2. Frederick Price

    The Today Show has just lost a viewer!

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  3. ^ Make that TWO Viewers!

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  4. i actually dont mind it but it could do with a john williams touch such as re recording it as an orchestrial piece

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  5. Make that three viewers. First Ann Curry and now this. That John Williams piece was one of my favorites. I remember being a kid hearing that dramatic open.

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  6. With the way that NBC did Ann Curry last Summer… I felt that was very disrespectful. Former Today Show EP Jim Bell took responsibility for Curry being forced out as Today Show co-host… I still seem to believe that Matt Lauer was in on the debacle, and could tell by his body language and facial expressions on the day of Curry’s tearful departure, and Savannah Guthrie sitting in her spot when the show came back from commercial. Some seem to believe that the Kathie Lee & Hoda hour isn’t any better either. I anticipate Today’s ratings continuing to drop… GMA and CBS This Morning seeing ratings growth.

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  7. Terrible..!! Bring BACK the mission!!

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  8. First, the new graphics and music in January 2012, then the boot of Ann Curry, then the ugly screen outside, then the huge, ugly desk, and now this? Nothing is going right at “today”.

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  9. Words cannot describe how much I hate the new theme. Nothing against the composer- I wish him well, but I absolutely detest it-why mess with tradition? I have been watching Today since the early 1980s and it just doesn’t make sense for them to change the theme. It sucks!

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  10. Frederick Price

    They did this to ”increase ratings”. Obviously that didn’t work! Firing Ann Curry, they knew their ratings would drop. That’s like firing Robin Roberts off GMA! Now their changing their open music! Those ratings will not be increasing, I ensure you that.

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  11. That’s music? I was hoping it was a one-time, maybe a week-long thing. Whatever it is, it’s awful! I understand this is probably because they’re trying to reach a more youthful audience, but in doing so, they lost me. The new music SUCKS. There, is that ‘youthful’ enough for you?

    Along with letting Ann Curry go, the Today Show has made bad choice after bad choice and it continues to dumb down to reach a wider audience.

    It doesn’t work. Honestly, I can’t stand the morning shows, news or not, on ABC or CBS, and KTLA is meh okay, but the Today Show used to be fantastic. Frankly, all the network morning/news shows copied KTLA and went a little tooooo far with the hokiness.

    Rant over.

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  12. The Today Show already has a new theme and graphics

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  13. I don’t know if they will, but they need to bring Katie Couric, Anna Curry, and Meredith Vieira BACK! FIRE MATT LAUERS ASS!!!! They need to change it from that old Non-Stop Music SHIT, and bring back JOHN WILLIAMS-THE MISSION!!!! SHIIIITTTT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  14. So bad! Bring back the old song. Wth??

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  15. We need to make a petition! They tried to dump it in ’94 and ’04. What is going on at TODAY? We need the team with Matt, Meredith, Ann, Al, KLG, and Hoda. They need to bring the old format back and get rid of the ‘Megyn Kelly TODAY’. That show is a direct copy of Live with Kelly and Ryan which absolutely sucks. TODAY doesn’t need to compete, they have been here for almost 66 years. They’re EPs have lost it…

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  16. As a matter of fact, here’s a good theme music for the Today Show that can out top both “The Mission” by John Williams and Adam Gunman’s Theme Song: “The X Package” Theme by Frank Gari (Gari Media Group). Even though it’s a local news theme song across the United States, and it came out in 1999, I still think that “The X Package” by Frank Gari (Gari Music Group) will be the perfect theme song for NBC News Today Show. For real. For real.

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