This is quite a departure from the past. The theme to This Week has always been a particularly harmonic and melodic driven work. This time, ABC execs wanted a track in which the backbone was completely percussive-driven. Though this might sound straight-forward, over 45 individual percussive instruments were used to create the new sound for This Week. The wide pallet a composer usually has to work with when composing a theme – meaning percussion, effects, and melodic/harmonic instruments in combination – was limited. The challenge was giving the theme the same variety, emotion, and diversity with percussion only – then sprinkling in harmonic elements to glue together the track and ID the ABC News mnemonic (which is a stripped down version of the last theme’s button).
Network News Music is a website by Victor Vlam, who holds the Guinness World Record for the largest collection of news music. 1,876 hours, 2 minutes and 52 seconds. News music is rarely heard without voice-overs or fade outs to commercial, yet it leaves an impact on many people. Founded in 2002, this site is a museum for TV news themes past and present.
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