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Last of the Summer Wine Theme – from Best BBC Tv Themes LP

Last of the Summer Wine was the longest operating sitcom in the UK, from 1973 until 2010 – some 31 series. It followed the antics of 3 retired men (the line up changed several times more than the years, although Norman Clegg, played by Peter Sallis of Wallace & Grommit fame starred throughout). It was set in and about Holfirth in Yorkshire, England and was written by Roy Clarke, who went on to write the wonderful, “Keeping up Appearances”. Here is the theme music, as requested by “APyleOfVinyl”, taken from the LP, “Top BBC Television Themes” on the BBC Records label, from 1978. This isn’t fairly the version with which I am familiar, which attributes a harmonica playing the lead, but possibly this was a slightly earlier version. It was composed by the legendary Ronnie Hazlehurst. I hope you appreciate this mellow track – it brings back memories of Sunday evenings for me, although I ought to admit, I did stop watching the programme a few years ago!

posted by in Comedies and have Comments (13)

13 Responses to “Last of the Summer Wine Theme – from Best BBC Tv Themes LP”

  1. 123mrwilletts says:

    i miss theis show best of british tv

  2. leporello56 says:

    Wow the sound is so good!

  3. pyestudiocolour says:

    @sideshowtink It’s a shame about you losing Eastenders! I watched it for twenty years, from the first episode in 1985 up to 2005, when I began to find some of the storylines a little too depressing. It was a really good programme though, especially in the earlier days with Dirty Den, Lou Beale and all the rest. Dot Cotton and Ian Beale are still in it and must have been from almost the beginning!

  4. pyestudiocolour says:

    @APyleOfVinyl Thanks for that – I guess I was just being a bit “careful” money wise – £50 for a stylus seemed a lot to me at the time, so I bought a Goldring Elektra for my main system, but it isn’t really as good as the Ortofon. I’ll look into the Concorde and also see if I can get a cheaper stylus for the LM10 too.

  5. pyestudiocolour says:

    @APyleOfVinyl Thanks for the information – I’m intrigued now about that first series – I may have to track it down on DVD or VHS to see what it was like. The incidental music was extremely well fitted to each programme, so I can now see why. What a true pro musician and perfectionist Ronnie Hazlehurst was.

  6. sideshowtink says:

    We have te BBC channel here in the states and I LOVE it and this show is on there. I SOOOOO miss Eastenders they said it became too expensive to broadcast! I got hooked on that show when I was in UK. They played it for awhile here and then….GONE. I felt like I was losing friends!!!

  7. APyleOfVinyl says:

    @APyleOfVinyl Did you know that Ronnie Hazelhurst spent 10 hours an episode composing incidental music for every scene?

  8. APyleOfVinyl says:

    @pyestudiocolour I believe they used this version for the first series. The first series was COMPLETELY DIFFERENT than the later, more familiar ones. Michael Bates was in the trio, but was never seen again after the first two series. The pacing was also different, it did not gain its unique, sedimentary pace of comedy until later, and it was mostly shot in front of a studio audience like other BBC programs of the time.

  9. APyleOfVinyl says:

    @pyestudiocolour You could replace it with a concorde. The concorde is supposed to be similar to it and is only 99 dollars for the whole shebang.

  10. pyestudiocolour says:

    @GarrardAT6 Thank you! It’s an Ortofon LM10 which was fitted to an old Sharp turntable I bought from a car boot sale in the early 90s. I’ve had it fitted to lots of turntables since as it sounds rather nice, but the styli are about £50 now for the genuine ones, so I’ve “retired” it to Youtube duties now! The old Lenco badly needs an overhaul when I can spare a bit of cash – the idler is past it and although I stripped & lubricated it, the motor is a bit noisy too, but again, fine for YT videos !

  11. pyestudiocolour says:

    @APyleOfVinyl It is unusual, isn’t it? I wouldn’t have thought the BBC would have put anything other than the proper version on one of their LPs. Perhaps they changed the music to the now familiar version after this record was made. I’ll have to look into it! The cartridge is an Ortorfon LM10, from (I think) the 1980s – I’ve had it in various players over the years and it still sounds nice, but styli are getting a bit expensive now!

  12. GarrardAT6 says:

    Very nice to hear the full length version in Such ‘Superb’ Quality!!!
    What cartridge are you hiding in that head shell Neil?

  13. APyleOfVinyl says:

    Great sound quality! This is a lot different than the version my dad recorded onto a BASF tape around 1980. His version is the more well known harmonica version. What an interesting curio! The dynamics fly at you in this recording. What cartridge are you using?

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