Raymond Scott tribute concert footage

Ape Lad sez, "YouTuber 2005adamo has extensive footage from the March, 2008 Raymond Scott Centennial Tribute Concert at Concordia University in Montreal, Canada."

Raymond Scott is, of course, the genius composer who wrote all the amazing tunes that Carl Stalling adapted for the Warner Brothers cartoons. He's hands-down my favorite composer and he was also a brilliant engineer whose homebrew, pre-digital sampling and sequencing techniques were 60 years ahead of their time. Link, Link to RaymondScott.com (Thanks, Ape Lad!)


  1. Their “Boy Scout in Switzerland” really swings.

    This must have been an awesomely weird concert — I love the complete contrast between the Quintette stuff (performed, as per tradition, on a lot more than five instruments :), and the electronic pieces like “Twilight in Turkey”, performed by three people in lab coats tweaking a collection of synths. Raymond Scott really got around.

  2. Scott’s music is wonderful. But it seriously overstates things to say he was “the genius composer who wrote all the amazing tunes that Carl Stalling adapted”. Stalling drew his themes from many places. Scott was responsible for only some of them, including a few of the most famous and recognizable bits.

  3. “Raymond Scott is, of course, the genius composer who wrote all the amazing tunes that Carl Stalling adapted for the Warner Brothers cartoons.”

    As the earlier commenter noted, Stalling had the entire Warner-owned music library to play with. For every “Powerhouse” there was an obscure pop tune or something from the Harry Warren-Al Dubin songbook. And let’s not forget Mendelssohn (“Fingel’s Cave” theme for the Minah Bird, one of the most evocative matches of music to character Stalling ever pulled off.)

  4. It hit me, watching this clip: Scott is on his way to being part of the canon of Great Popular Music. The kids who heard Stalling’s adaptations of his music in WB shorts grew up and made their own tributes, and now their kids are adults too.

    What was deeply quirky in the 1930s and 40s has become a piece of our culture. It’s not inherently strange to me to see a show like this any more; his tunes are still silly and whimsical, but they’re a familiar, nostalgic thing. His aggressive cut-up tempos are part of our life.

    It’s pretty cool to see tunes with names like ‘Bumpy Weather Over Newark’ on their way to becoming Old Standards!

  5. What hit me from that clip is that, from everything I know of him, Scott would’ve hated it.

    It ‘swang’… ‘swung’?… was too off-rhythm for him. I gather that he was a stickler for The Rhythms That He Wrote, Exactly As He Wrote Them.

    That said, I adore his work and look forward to many more people discovering it and keeping it alive, and being influenced by it.

  6. this is probably a bit off-topic, and not to take anything away from raymond scott, but i would love to see a similar tribute to hoyt curtain, who did the soundtracks for the hanna-barbera franchises. some of his work for The Flintstones, Top Cat, The Jetsons, and Jonny Quest is simply gorgeous; some of it is, if not gorgeous, at least brilliantly apt to the cartoon situation.

    that’s not to say that some of his work wasn’t more, shall we say, expendable, but i put that up to the demands of the studio, which tended to trend downward in terms of sensibility as it grew, a not unusual response to success, then or now.

    but when his compositions worked, they worked spot-on gorgeous. long live hoyt curtain, and long live raymond scott.

  7. I agree this concert looks amazing.

    For anyone based in the UK, you may want to check out my Raymond Scott Project band at: http://www.raymondscottproject.com

    This group is a full 6 piece band featuring some of the U.Ks leading musiciains, replicating and re-interpreting the 1930’s Quintette stuff, as well as exploring Scott’s later electronic work. The band has had rave reviews from all the guys at the Raymond Scott archives and a recent 5 star review in the Scotsman.

    We are playing London in October and plan a full tour for next year throughout he U.K. and beyond.

    Stu Brown
    email: info@raymondscottproject.com for more info/bookings, etc

  8. “Raymond Scott is, of course, the genius composer who wrote all the amazing tunes that Carl Stalling adapted for the Warner Brothers cartoons.”

    Regarding the earlier discussion on this, I think the point is that many of the other tunes Carl Stalling adapted are instantly recognisable in their own right, whereas many people hearing Scott’s music in the cartoon context are not aware of who originally wrote it. It was a revelation for me (about 14 years ago) to realise that these themes, which sound like they were written specifically for the cartoons, were in fact borrowed from a band leader who had never watched a cartoon in his life.

    Scott’s music is definitely incredible stuff and he was a genius on many levels, not least for leading the way in electronic music and inventing the first ever sequencer!

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