Reviewed by: Dave
May 4, 2012
 
Star Wars Original Soundtrack album cover front & back
 
Earlier this week I was thumbing through what is left of my record collection from college and I came across the Star Wars Original Soundtrack album (front and back cover art shown above).

After looking over the cover art and reading the liner notes, I thought this album would be an interesting Robot Review topic of discussion that would be able to touch on some of the robots from the first Star Wars film.
 

A Galactic Gatefold

One of my favorite things about record albums is the cover art. The 12″ by 12″ size is such a great canvas for the photographic and illustrative creativity that supports the music.

This album is especially great for just this reason – it has a gatefold that opens to reveal a dozen screenshots from the movie (below), including a few of our favorite robots R2-D2 and C-3PO.
 
Star Wars Original Soundtrack album gatefold
 

The Stories Behind the Music

But the real highlight of this album is definitely the liner notes that were included. They provide fascinating insight into writer/director George Lucas’ and composer John William’s thoughts behind the music of Star Wars.

I’ll provide links at the bottom of this page so you can view the actual liner notes and read them in their entirety for yourself, but I’ll mention a few specific sections that relate directly to robots in the film.
 

The Little People Work (Side 2: Track 2)

This track is from the scenes with R2-D2 and the Jawas. R2 is captured while wandering in the desert and placed in the Jawa’s Sandcrawler vehicle, although thankfully C-3PO is also there and the two friends are reunited.
 

The Desert and the Robot Auction (Side 1: Track 4)
R5-D4 Star Wars droid

This track combines music from two different scenes. The first section is when C-3PO and R2-D2 land their escape pod in the desert and head off in separate directions to find help.

The second section is the scene where the Jawas are trying to sell various robots to Luke Skywalker and his uncle. In addition to C-3PO and R2-D2, we also get to see some other types of droids, including R5-D4 (a square headed red version of R2-D2).

Liner notes from John Williams: The desert music serves as an introduction to this first planet in the film. It reflects the robots’ feelings about this untouched, unfriendly-looking planet. I segue from this to the Jawa theme which is heard over the auction.
 

Mouse Robot and Blasting Off (Side 3: Track 2)
MSE-6 mouse droid

 
The first part of this track is from the scene on the Death Star when Luke Skywalker and Han Solo are disguised as Stormtroopers escorting Chewbacca as their “prisoner”.

While walking down a corridor, a small MSE-6 droid (nickname mouse robot) rolls up in front of them and Chewbacca lets out a Wookie growl that scares the skittish little guy away.

 

A Great Piece of History

This Star Wars Original Soundtrack album will always be one of my favorites, which is why it is a permanent fixture in my record collection. John William’s fantastic musical score is part of the reason, but an equally important reason is because of the memories that come with having an actual physical piece of history from the time when the first Star Wars movie was released.

If you ever find yourself at a thrift store or walking by a record shop, I encourage you to take a few minutes to flip through their record bins and see what you might find. You never know if there’s a $5 copy of the Star Wars Original Soundtrack waiting for a home where it will be appreciated.

And as promised, here are links to the full liner notes: Page 1   Page 2
 
Visit our Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope title page for more information and to watch the trailer.
 
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