Lara's Theme (Doctor Zhivago)

  1. Martin Jonas
    Martin Jonas
    Maurice Jarre: Lara's Theme (Somewhere My Love)

    This is my recording of the leitmotif from the soundtrack of the 1965 movie "Doctor Zhivago", played as a trio of two mandolins and tenor guitar. On the original soundtrack, it's mainly played on balalaika, but it transfers nicely to mandolin.

    This is an old arrangement which was already in our group's repertoire folder when I joined. I suspect it's by Tony Judge, probably adapted from a published score of some sort. The second mandolin part I'm playing is actually the mandola part from our arrangement transposed up one octave -- I think the higher register works better when playing it as a trio.

    1890s Umberto Ceccherini mandolin
    1915 Luigi Embergher mandolin
    Ozark tenor guitar

  2. Bertram Henze
    Bertram Henze
    Boy do I know it. This scene has always haunted me.
  3. John Kelly
    John Kelly
    Bringing back lots of memories here, Martin. My only suggestion would be to have more pictures of Julie Christie!
  4. Bertram Henze
    Bertram Henze
    Nah, more Rita Tushingham!
  5. Martin Jonas
    Martin Jonas
    I'm still re-recording old arrangements from our repertoire folder -- here is how we play Lara's Theme. Unlike my old recording above, this one is without click track so I'm free to play it with the rubato this tune really needs.

    Mid-Missouri M-0W mandolin (x2)
    Vintage Viaten tenor guitar

  6. John Kelly
    John Kelly
    Five years on, Martin, and still I am looking for Julie Christie pictures here!
    A fine arrangement, and well played. The absence of click track lets it flow so well.
  7. Martin Jonas
    Martin Jonas
    Thanks John! I usually get told off by my colleagues for taking this one too fast, so I made a deliberate effort of keeping it slow.

    Can't help with Julie Christie pictures. You can do a lot with Photoshop these days, but you probably wouldn't like the results...

  8. Bren
    Thanks Martin.
    Nice version of one of my favourites.

    I was lucky enough to see mandolinist Red Rector play this in an Aberdeen pub back about 1983 and have tried to play what I remember of his version ever since.

    Recently I downloaded his duet album with Jethro Burns and I realised just how much I was leaving out!

    Red had a good line of banter introducing this song which Jethro also used:
    "Now Red is going to amaze you all by playing three tunes simultaneously - Lara's Theme, Somewhere My Love, and Dr. Zhivago!"
  9. Gelsenbury
    That's a good one, Bren.

    Well played, Martin. The free style sounds just right. I can't play this tune, but I remember my grandad playing it on the keyboards.
  10. Simon DS
    Simon DS
    Really nice Martin, thanks for posting this.

    Bren do you happen to have the TAB for this tune?
    I’m going to have to try to get a repertoire sorted out of popular classics like this. Film themes etc. They’re difficult to find in abc though.

    Yay Dennis!
    I mean it’s good to hear from you.
    By the way, my great grandad used to play the fiddle, but he didn’t see the film because he was dead already.
    My grandad loved the film.

    And what about the irregulars? Shout out guys!

    And the clicktrack or no clicktrack debate.
    Ah, the nostalgia of it. Happy memories of my two ex wives.
  11. Bren
    Hi Simon,

    I don't think I've seen a TAB but there must be one somewhere.

    I did a quick take at my desk, on my conference mike today, of just the melody, as I remember it, without having listened to any version recently other than Martin's here.

    Then I went and listened to Jethro and Red Rector's version.
    Lots of great melodic ideas from both of them (Jethro plays guitar on this version) but I wanted to record mine first before I got swayed.

  12. Martin Jonas
    Martin Jonas
    Thanks for the Jethro and Red video -- I hadn't heard it before. Of course, the playing is much better than mine but I'm glad to see the tempo is about what I've used.

    It says your video is private, so I can't see it. Can you look at the settings?

  13. Bren
    Hi Martin, I changed a setting in YouTube, so I hope it shows now. If not, don't worry, you're not missing much.
  14. Martin Jonas
    Martin Jonas
    Hi Bren, nice double-stopping and slides, very melodic and fluent playing. I like that version! What mandolin is that?

  15. Simon DS
    Simon DS
    That’s some really nice playing there Bren.
    I like those subtle double stop slides and the slight hesitations for the last note of each phrase to free them up and give the relaxed nostalgic feeling.

    [Many thanks for the link, I’m going to work on it. By the way, usually on Song A Week, people post professional type vids with an image at the beginning of the thread and then later in the thread these professional type vids are posted as text links (no image -in order to keep the personal vids more visible). No intentional whatever intended, actually the rule at the end of the day is: do what ever you want ]

    Please post more vids, they’re actually pretty good!
  16. John Kelly
    John Kelly
    Bren, You have a really evocative version there. Playing from memory really lets us give a more fluent performance. Your double stops and tremolo add to the enjoyment.
  17. Simon DS
    Simon DS
    Interesting you say that John.
    I have about 150 tunes that I’ve recorded and I hardly every play them. Rightly or wrongly I feel that they’re too easy now.
    There are about 100 tunes on my ‘wish I could play it’ list that I practice and enjoy the challenge of trying to actually play them right. There’s stress involved too.
    Now I’m wondering if I should be playing the first 150 just for the enjoyment of playing tunes.
    I suppose if I was playing with others I wouldn’t be thinking like this.

    Maybe recording pre-learnt sets is the way to go.
  18. Martin Jonas
    Martin Jonas
    Simon, I am in a similar position in that most of my recordings are made as part of trying out new pieces and working up potential repertoire for our group. I think that's why I'm having a lot of fun with my live video recordings over the past few months -- these are mainly pieces I already know very well and that I have played frequently with other musicians in a live setting.

  19. Bren
    Point taken about video files. That actually occurred to me while I was posting it but I was preoccupied with getting my own one to show.
    The mandolin was custom made by Marshall Dow in Aberdeen 1998. The dark wood in the body is reclaimed mahogany from discarded furniture. Single piece carved back. It's really developed tone and volume over last 22 years. The little mic doesn't do it justice.

    The hesitation before the last phrase I think were imitating balalaika or maybe bouzouki phrasing. Thanks for the nice comments all. I only hear mistakes! And am also missing playing with others.
  20. Frithjof
    Martin – great re-recording of the tune.
    Bren – you delivered an amazing playing, too. I like the tremolo of double stops a lot. It would be my goal to play songs by heart in this quality.
Results 1 to 20 of 20