Themes from ‘Other’

“Turning Point” Theme


Turning Point was an ABC news magazine that would feature one topic, such as a historical event of significance. It was anchored by alternating stars: Barbara Walters, Diane Sawyer or Forrest Sawyer. The program ran from 1994 to 1997. After 1997 it would continue on in the form of irregular specials, but for all intents and purposes, it pretty much disappeared. This theme is composed by Bill Conti, who also composed the Prime Time Live theme.

Bill Conti - Turning Point theme

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“Day One” 1993 – 1995 Theme


News magazines are like fashion accessories: one day they are hot; the next they aren’t. And when they are hot, there is no escaping them. They are all over the network schedules. Each network will stretch its news staff to the limits to create more news magazines. Life expectancy is short for most of them. Day One, which is such a failed news magazine, was created to fill a whole in the ABC schedule. True to tradition, the news magazine promised to be different. In this case, it was to feature softer content compared to the investigations and hard news on 20/20 and Prime Time Live. ABC News President Roone Arledge reveals in his book, Roone, that he thought Connie Chung would be a perfect fit as anchor. But that did not work out. Instead the low key but capable Forrest Sawyer served as sole anchor of the program.

Score Productions - Day One theme

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“Viewpoint” 90’s theme


ABC News (like the ABC Sports division in its heyday) has become known for consistency with regard to its themes. When a new theme is commissioned, it is usually a newly recorded and slightly modernized version of the old theme. In those cases where they really start from scratch, the new theme contains many elements from the old theme. It is a subtle message that conveys to the audience that ABC News is with the times, yet builds on an impressive legacy. As you can hear, this version of the Viewpoint theme is mostly a re-recording of the classic Viewpoint theme.

Score Productions - Viewpoint theme

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“ABC News Special Report” 1991 – 2013 Theme


“This is an ABC News Special Report.” Whenever breaking news warrants an interruption of regularly scheduled programming, this theme is used. While it is solemn and conveys both importance and urgency, it does not scream hype and sensationalism. It thereby sets the right tone for the coverage that was lead by anchors such as Peter Jennings, Charles Gibson and Diane Sawyer. Originally this theme was composed for ABC’s coverage of the Gulf War.

Score Productions - Special Report theme

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“Our World” Theme


“When we remember a time, we remember moments. A kaleidoscope of the sights, sounds and emotions of the way we were. Our World. It’s about time.” That’s how every episode of Our World started. It was a critically acclaimed series that in each episode examined a period of American history. The ratings unfortunately were not good. Our World only lasted for 26 episodes shown during the 1986-87 season. The show focussed mostly on events after World War II because of the availability of archival footage and eyewitnesses. Linda Ellerbee and Ray Gandolf hosted. The theme is composed by Bill Conti.

Bill Conti - Our World theme

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“We’re With You” Promo (news version)


“We’re With You” is the name of the promo campaign that ABC used during the 1984-85 TV season. It’s composed by Richard Lavsky who has also composed a lot of music for ABC News during the 1970’s, 80’s and 90’s. This version was used to promote the News Division’s shows and features the ABC News signature.

Richard Lavsky - We’re With You (news version) promo

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“Business Brief” 1984 – 1986 Theme


Business Brief was an ABC News Brief featuring only financial news anchored by ABC’s chief economics correspondent, Dan Cordtz. News Briefs were the 30, 60 or 90-second newscasts that would air during entertainment programs. They have now mostly disappeared from the network with the exception of one edition. A 30-second News Brief is still produced each day a few minutes before 3 pm EST, though not all stations carry it. However it’s mostly a promo for World News. In this day and age, news is rapidly available on the internet and there really isn’t much need for short news summaries anymore. Business Brief aired each weekday at 8:58 pm.

Score Productions - Business Brief theme

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“Directions” 1983 Theme


ABC News Directions was the name for a program that consisted of town hall meetings, talk shows and documentaries that usually had a religious or spiritual theme. It was shown on sunday mornings from the 1970’s to 1985. The theme sounds like a classic ABC News theme. It sounds like it is done by Score Productions but I don’t know that for sure.

Unknown - ABC News Directions

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“ABC News Closeup” 1982 – 1987 Theme


This is the theme used for a few years on the long running ABC News documentary series titled Closeup. The first documentary that ran under the Closeup moniker aired in 1973. This theme was used at least from 1982 until 1987 but it may have been used before or after that time.

Score Productions - Closeup theme

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“World News This Morning” Theme


You are listening to the full World News This Morning theme. This program has had a variety of anchors since its debut in 1982, including Steve Bell, Anderson Cooper and Paula Zahn. This theme was used on the first broadcast and on the last broadcast of World News This Morning. However, for about a year they used the World News Now theme. In 1992, after World News Now debuted, production of the two newscasts was merged. World News This Morning was anchored by the same people in the same laid back style. However, the network wanted to differentiate the two. So World News This Morning started using their old theme again and anchors adressed their audience in a more formal way. Without a doubt the theme is a wonderful variation on the classic ABC News theme. In 2006 it was replaced with America This Morning which uses a different theme.

Score Productions - World News This Morning theme

Here’s a bumper that was used even in the latter days of World News This Morning.

Score Productions - World News This Morning theme

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“Viewpoint” 80’s Theme


This program was, as are most other ABC News programs, created by Roone Arledge. It utilized the town hall format with a panel of experts being asked questions by an audience consisting of regular people. It’s the job of the moderator to keep order and the discussion lively. Many ABC News personalities, including Peter Jennings, Geraldo Rivera and Ted Koppel, have been moderators at one time or another. The program always aired in the form of a special and never had a regular timeslot.

Score Productions - Viewpoint theme

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“AM America” Theme


AM America was the direct predecessor to Good Morning America. Bill Beutel and Stephanie Edwards hosted the show from New York. The news was read by Peter Jennings in Washington. AM America lasted for only a short time (nine months) and was plagued by failure from the very beginning. Original host Bob Kennedy died in the months preceding the debut. And both Beutel and Edwards left the show just months after its debut. In any case, it had a colorful set and colorful graphics with a distinct 70’s disco feel to them. The theme, anything but disco, was commissioned by ABC in 1974 and composed by William Goldstein.

William Goldstein - AM America theme

William Goldstein - AM America bumper


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