Home > News and Announcements > Introducing our newest reviewer: Craig Lysy

Introducing our newest reviewer: Craig Lysy

November 6, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

I had the good fortune of meeting Jon in 2008 through the Filmtracks scoreboard. We realized that we were both local LA guys and so agreed to setup a meeting. We first met over a cup of tea at the Northridge Borders book store and talked for almost 4 hours about our shared passion – film scores. It was an instant connection that has since evolved into a truly wonderful and rewarding friendship.

Jon has suggested to me on a number of occasions that I consider reviewing and launching my own site. If I was in my twenties and single I would have taken him up on both in a heartbeat, but at 56 and married, the timing and investment is just too ambitious. But on the matter of reviews, I have decided to accept Jon’s generous solicitation. I am honored and gratified to collaborate with Jon by joining one of the finest film score sites on the internet.

I have asked Jon to allow me to “look backwards” and focus on “Classic Scores” here defined as the time frame of 1930 – 1969. This age has a wondrous bounty of what I call buried treasure. Many of our newest score fans are in their teens and 20’s and have joined the community due to the recent works of John Powell, Harry Gregson-Williams and Hans Zimmer. I believe I can be a guide to reveal great film scores of the past of which they may be unaware or unfamiliar. I am captivated by this era and my efforts are possible because I have many scores from this period and several record labels are again releasing and/or rerecording many Classic Age scores.

First allow me to provide you with a short biography. I was born in 1954 in rural Michigan outside of Detroit where there were still dirt roads. I received a Catholic school education through high school, graduating in 1972. I had to work to pay for college, as such I graduated after six years in 1978 from Michigan State University with a BS degree in Biology. I soon afterwards obtained my license to practice Respiratory Care and I have worked in the profession for the last 32 years. I currently supervise a Respiratory department of 110 people at a major medical center in Pasadena. I moved to California seeking my fortune in 1980 and have never looked back. I have been married to my partner Segundo for 16 years and he like Jon’s wife Ami, endures his partner’s mad and passionate pursuit of film music.

My love for film music began in 1965 when a wide-eyed nine year kid sat entranced in front of the TV as the film “To Kill A Mockingbird” played. The beautiful piano and flute carried main title just captivated me and I have never looked back. “Born Free” followed and the LP my mom bought was played to death. The great scores from the Star Trek series that premiered in 1966 also caught my ear. Yet it was not until high school that I slowly began collecting LPs in earnest as I was only making 50 cents an hour! I made the switch to CDs in 1982 and now at last count have 2,602 film scores. Lately I have acquiesced to the inevitable and begun acquiring digital downloads. I will seek out film score music from wherever and whatever source by which it comes.

My favorite composers are Georges Delerue, Miklos Rozsa, John Barry, James Horner and Mark McKenzie – the lyricists as I call them. I am an incurable romantic who falls for unabashed melodic emotionalism every time. I can honestly say that I truly enjoy to varying degrees works by each composer. I am always hopeful that no matter who landed the scoring assignment, that they succeed as their success is my bounty! I have a deep and abiding respect for all musicians and celebrate the beauty they bring into the world. Music is indeed one of God’s greatest and enduring gifts to mankind and I regret that I never followed my impulse to play the piano.

For ratings, I believe in keeping things simple. As such, I will employ the following tertiary rating system: ***** A masterpiece, **** Excellent , *** Good

Why only three ratings you ask? Given the limited amount of time I have carved out of my schedule to provide reviews, I believe it best that I focus on those scores that have the most to offer.

Lastly, for my reviews, I intend to focus on the emotional narrative of the score as this is what drew me to film score music in the first place. I am excited about this endeavor and believe it poetic to accept Jon’s recommendation that I take on Elmer Bernstein’s “To Kill A Mockingbird” for my first review. All the best!

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  1. November 6, 2010 at 6:54 pm

    Welcome to the team, Craig! I know you will be a fantastic addition to an already great site. Looking forward to your reviews!

    • Craig Richard Lysy
      November 9, 2010 at 11:34 am

      Thank you for the kind words.

      All the best.

  2. Carlton
    November 7, 2010 at 6:44 am

    Great Introduction. I love the rating system: 5,4,3, and not worth the time. 😀

    • Craig Richard Lysy
      November 9, 2010 at 11:35 am

      Thank you for the support.

      All the best.

  3. Riley Webster
    November 7, 2010 at 2:06 pm

    Good luck, Craig! Definitely a great addition to the site. May I recommend a possible future review of Rozsa’s Spellbound, truly one of the best and most underrated scores of the Golden Age?

    Anyways, job well done getting here, and I definitely look forward to reading your reviews!

    • Craig Richard Lysy
      November 9, 2010 at 11:40 am

      Hi,

      Thank you for the kind words. In regards to Spellbound, absolutely! I worship at Rozsa’s altar and this Oscar winning score is timeless.

      Next up for Jon’s approval are my reviews for two new releases; Tobruk by Kaper and The War Wagon by Tiomkin.

      All the best.

  4. November 11, 2010 at 7:34 am

    Hey, Craig! Sorry it took me a while to comment here…

    In any case, I’m extremely glad to see you taking up the mantle of reviewing classic scores here…there are sadly few comprehensive websites that cover the Golden Age. Your always positive and helpful outlook, plus your extensive experience and knowledge of this neglected period, makes you one of the best people I could think of for revealing the works of Rosza, Delerue, Jarre and the like.

    As you know, I’m one of those younger folks who was brought into the score world by Hans Zimmer and John Powell (Harry Gregson-Williams too, to a lesser extent) but, if the means permit me, I’m definitely looking forward to exploring yesteryear’s film scores and I’m sure you will be my most valuable guide 🙂

    Looking forward to the reviews!

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