1. Welcome to the new boards! Details here!

Augie's Great Municipal Band - The Debate

Discussion in 'Star Wars And Film Music' started by Grand Moff Joker, Feb 13, 2001.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Cindé of Naboo

    Cindé of Naboo Jedi Padawan star 4

    Apr 19, 2000
    Dehrian -- I actually know exactly what you're talking about -- musically, technically speaking, the two pieces of music are in fact two completely separate pieces. Only the rhythm is completely matchable, and even that doesn't always work. But on the other hand....I think it's the subtlety, the very thin connection between the two, that makes it so interesting. Whether it was intentional or not, it certainly adds a touch of irony to the end scene.
  2. Grand Moff Joker

    Grand Moff Joker Jedi Master star 4

    Oct 13, 1999
    I just found a great link that may revitalize this topic. On this page over at the excellent John Williams Central website (, they present a comparison MP3 of Augie/Emperor's Theme, a note-by-note comparison of the melodies, and all sorts of various quotes on the topic. Check it out here:
  3. Sache8

    Sache8 Jedi Master star 4

    Mar 19, 2000
    Oh my gosh, I feel like such a dolt for never realizing the Palpy theme in there before.

    Duh. Thanks for the pointing out.

    I guess my fam's no help. None of them could even here the Imperial March in Anakin's Theme until I played it 3 times and actually pointed out where it was.
  4. Jedi Kylenn

    Jedi Kylenn Jedi Padawan star 4

    Jul 2, 1999
    GMJ: Good find!

    Here are the relevant quotes from that link:

    John Williams' quote from The Boston Globe (3/28/99)
    "Later in the film there is a big celebration in some kind of coliseum. There's some funny music, a children's chorus, a march. "It's struggling to be the Imperial March," Williams says. Then he shoots a rare grin. "And it's going to get there."

    Quote clarification and some more observations by Jeffrey Wheeler (writer)
    You may recall that The Boston Globe quoted John Williams as saying that the 'Augie' theme -- yes, Augie's theme, not just Anakin's theme -- was a variation on the 'Imperial March.' (see above).
    A listen and a confirmation from the Globe inform that Mr. Williams was referring to the Emperor's Theme. The composer apparently *has* confirmed this.

  5. Crystena77

    Crystena77 Jedi Master star 4

    Jun 15, 1999
    What Cindé of Naboo said.

  6. DarthHomer

    DarthHomer Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Apr 29, 2000
    We may never know for sure, but either way it's a great piece of music. Makes me want to get up and dance whenever I hear it! :)
  7. Erin Kenobi

    Erin Kenobi Jedi Padawan star 4

    May 30, 2000
    Me too! I love Augie's!
  8. Idgie

    Idgie Jedi Padawan star 4

    Mar 17, 2001
    The part where the children's chorus comes in,that's Palpatine's theme.It's really not the entire song,just that bit.I remember reading an interview with George Lucas where he talked about that song,and yes it was intentional,the Chorus part of the "Emperor's Theme" was sped up.
  9. Son of the Suns

    Son of the Suns Administrator Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    May 6, 1999
  10. Grand Moff Joker

    Grand Moff Joker Jedi Master star 4

    Oct 13, 1999
    Holy crap! I had forgotten about this thread. It was started a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away...
  11. AdamBertocci

    AdamBertocci Manager Emeritus star 7 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 3, 2002
    This sort of thing is what saved TPM for me. Subtle stuff like this. I LOVE THIS TRACK!!!!

    Rick McCallum loves you!
  12. vlps

    vlps Jedi Youngling star 2

    Feb 11, 2002
    you are so right... cool....

    ST-TPM-ASF-TNE Moderator Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Jun 27, 2001
    I think when you look deeper into the score, you realize how sad it really is. I always considered the score to represent happiness and victory. The heros win.

    But when you break it down, the heros haven't won. They only think they have. That's what makes the score (along with the ending of the movie itself) so sad in a way.

    But either way I love it :D
  14. TenorAprentice

    TenorAprentice Jedi Padawan star 4

    Jul 19, 2002
    I still remember the chills I had in the theater....

    so do we think that Palpatine hired a new chior in ROTJ, or did the kids singing just grow up, and palpatine had them follow him around, or hide in a closet on the death star 2?
  15. Tyranium

    Tyranium Jedi Youngling

    Aug 28, 2002
    Tenor, [face_laugh]

    I like the climax on DS2 when we finally get the Emperor's Theme blasted by the horns as Luke is getting toasted. And when Vader & Luke are dueling.

    I wonder if we'll get any instrumental Emperor's Theme in E3?
  16. Vaderbait

    Vaderbait Jedi Knight star 6

    Sep 26, 2001
    I love the part in ROTJ when the theme gets really powerful during the saber fight and eventually Palpatine's death.
  17. General Kenobi

    General Kenobi Administrator Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Dec 31, 1998
  18. Shadowen

    Shadowen Jedi Youngling star 3

    May 11, 1999
    "It was when I got the piano music for TPM that I first noticed the sinister hints in this happy song, and it literally sent chills up and down my spine. I love it!"

    Who the--what--how--huh--why did no one tell me this?

    That's the coolest bit of musical trivia ever!
  19. solojones

    solojones Force Ghost star 9

    Sep 27, 2000
    I'm just going to be lazy and splice this from my IB Extended Essay :p

    One of the most interesting variations of the Dark Side Theme is in the cue ?Augie's Great Municipal Band? at the end of Episode I: The Phantom Menace. This music accompanies a triumphant parade supposedly celebrating the victory of the heroes. However, the true result of the first episode is that the evil future Emperor Palpatine has gained more power. John Williams? use of the Dark Side Theme here is nothing short of brilliant. The key has been changed from G minor to A major and the tempo is approximately twice as fast as that of the normal Dark Side Theme. The rhythmic pattern of the notes has not been changed. Instead of the low, ominous voices of a men?s choir, the melody and harmony employ consonance and are sung by high, jubilant children?s voices. In addition to being modulated to a major scale, this version of the Dark Side Theme is, more simplistically, pentatonic. In contrast to the minor mode and semitonal nature of the other cues, this simplified melody remains diatonic in nature and has a pleasant sound. The choir is backed by percussion playing a swift marching beat on the rims of snare drums. Triumphant blasts of horns mark the end of each phrase. As the theme progresses, a double time variation of the rhythm is played by trumpets, then echoed by the children?s choir in a round. The effect is a jubilant march that seems to celebrate victory for the heroes, but when heard in context with the rest of the musical saga, foreshadows victory of the villains.

    In short, it really angers me that most people will never know the extreme subtlety and brilliance of SW, especially it's music.

    [hl=darkgreen]-sj loves kevin spacey[/hl]
  20. poor yorick

    poor yorick Ex-Mod star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA VIP - Game Host

    Jun 25, 2002
    Whoa! :eek: I had no idea, but if you listen to sound clips, you can hear it. I *had* noticed that the Augie's municipal band song sounds a lot like the opening track of the Powaqqatsi soundtrack (composed by Philip Glass), and wondered if there were any connection. Powaqqatsi is from '88, TPM from '99. FWIW, GL was one of Powaqqatsi's executive producers, although that doesn't exactly prove the soundtrack was an influence on Williams.

    Audio clips courtesy of

    [link=]Serra Pelada[/link] from Powaqqatsi (First audio track on CD)

    [link=]Augie's Municipal Band and End Credits[/link] (Last audio track on CD)

    [link=]Lightsaber/The Ewok Battle[/link], i.e, The Emperor's Theme (Track 6 on disc 2)
  21. General Kenobi

    General Kenobi Administrator Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Dec 31, 1998
    This is one of the more frequently asked questions here in the music forum, so here is the original thread where Augie & the Emperor's Theme is discussed.
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.