The Music Lounge

The Deadly Affair

Quincy Jones’ 1966 Soundtrack to ‘The Deadly Affair’ Film…

TheDeadlyAffairIf ever a soundtrack captured the mood of not only a film but the era in which it was produced then Quincy Jones’ soundtrack to ‘The Deadly Affair’ must surely rank amongst the very best. One of the true great composers of modern jazz in the last fifty years, Quincy Jones’ body of work in film, television and as a recording artist and producer in his own right is, quite simply staggering. It is difficult to think of a leading black popular music artist who has not worked with Jones, his CV which includes producing ‘Thriller’ is second to none.

Whilst he made his millions with the jazz and soul superstars of the seventies and eighties, it was his work during the sixties which laid the foundations for his prolonged success. Quincy Jones trademark was film scores and he did it brilliantly. ‘The Deadly Affair’ released in 1966, one of thirty-three major movie soundtracks by Jones was an adaptation of John Le Carre’s early novel ‘A Murder of Quality’ and starred James Mason, Simone Signoret and Harry Andrews in a classic sixties espionage thriller.

Mason plays Charles Dobbs, who, due to contractual reasons could not be called George Smiley as he is in the book. Dobbs cuts a sad figure and the film is a tale of love and betrayal set against a Cold War backdrop. The accompanying music is wonderful, in parts one could imagine the script being written around the music score, it is that good. Enchanting string sections, bossa nova beats come together beautifully and for Retroculturati it is Jones’ finest soundtrack.

Below are two versions of the opening piece; the soundtrack to the opening credits and the original. Press play and I defy anyone not to feel whisked away to London in the mid-sixties. Go on, I dare you.



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