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Live and Let Die
Soundtrack album by George Martin
Released 2 July 1973
Recorded 1972-73 at AIR Studios, London
Length 31:14
Label United Artists
Producer George Martin
George Martin chronology
London by George
(1967)London by George1967
Live and Let Die
Beatles to Bond and Bach
(1978)Beatles to Bond and Bach1978
James Bond soundtrack chronology
Diamonds Are Forever
(1971) Diamonds Are Forever1971
Live and Let Die
(1973) Live and Let Die1973
The Man with the Golden Gun
(1974) The Man with the Golden Gun1974
Singles from Live and Let Die
  1. "Live and Let Die"
    Released: 1 June 1973

Live and Let Die is the soundtrack to the eighth James Bond film of the same name. It was scored by George Martin. The title song was written by Paul and Linda McCartney and performed by Paul McCartney and Wings.

It was the first Bond film score not to involve John Barry.


The music for most of the Bond films through Diamonds Are Forever had been scored by John Barry. Due to his working on a musical, and having fallen out with Bond producer Harry Saltzman over the last title song, Barry was unavailable to score Live and Let Die.[citation needed]

Producers Saltzman and Albert Broccoli approached Paul McCartney to write the theme song and McCartney in turn asked Martin to record it for him. Impressed with the orchestration for the finished track, Saltzman and Broccoli considered Martin for the film’s score.[1]

Martin worked closely with director Guy Hamilton who described what the music should convey in each scene as it unfolds. Only very minor changes to the finished score were asked for. Martin felt that this was as much for Hamilton's accurate briefing.[2]

The orchestra was conducted by Martin and recorded at AIR Studios. The soundtrack was also released in quadrophonic.

Title song[edit]

Having recorded McCartney's performance, Martin was taken aback when Saltzman asked him who he thought should sing the film's title song, suggesting to him Thelma Houston. Saltzman had envisaged a female soul singer. Martin said that it should be McCartney.[3] He nonetheless scored a soul arrangement to accompany singer B. J. Arnau for a nightclub sequence in the film.

Live and Let Die was the first time that a rock music arrangement was used to open a Bond film. It was also the first time that McCartney and Martin had worked together since Abbey Road in 1969. McCartney had been considered as title song composer for the previous Bond film, Diamonds Are Forever.[4] The song was nominated for an Academy Award but lost to "The Way We Were".

The ″Live and Let Die" single was a major success in the U.S.[5] and UK and continues to be a highlight of McCartney's live shows.[citation needed] Chrissie Hynde covered the song for Bond composer David Arnold's compilation album Shaken and Stirred: The David Arnold James Bond Project.

Track listing[edit]

The original soundtrack LP ended with track 14, James Bond theme, and this version was later released on CD in 1988. The digitally remastered CD re-release, 2003, as well as adding eight additional tracks also extended several of the original ones, such as Bond Meets Solitaire. Except as noted, all tracks composed by George Martin.[6]

  1. "Live and Let Die (Main Title) (Paul and Linda McCartney)" – Paul McCartney & Wings
  2. "Just a Closer Walk with Thee (Trad. Arr. Milton Batiste) /New Second Line (Milton Batiste)" – Harold A. "Duke" Dejan & The Olympia Brass Band[6]
  3. "Bond Meets Solitaire"[A]
  4. "Whisper Who Dares"[A]
  5. "Snakes Alive"[A]
  6. "Baron Samedi's Dance of Death"
  7. "San Monique"
  8. "Fillet of Soul – New Orleans/Live and Let Die/Fillet of Soul – Harlem" – B. J. Arnau
  9. "Bond Drops In"[A]
  10. "If He Finds It, Kill Him"[A]
  11. "Trespassers Will Be Eaten"[A]
  12. "Solitaire Gets Her Cards"[A]
  13. "Sacrifice"
  14. "James Bond Theme" (Monty Norman)[A]
  15. "Gunbarrel/Snakebit"[A]
  16. "Bond to New York"[A]
  17. "San Monique (Alternate)"
  18. "Bond and Rosie"[A]
  19. "The Lovers"[A]
  20. "New Orleans"[A]
  21. "Boat Chase"[A]
  22. "Underground Lair"[A]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o contains the "James Bond Theme", originally composed for the Dr. No soundtrack

See also[edit]


  1. ^ George Martin; Jeremy Hornsby (1979). All You Need Is Ears. London and Basingstoke: MacMillan London Ltd. ISBN 0 333 23859 1. 
  2. ^ George Martin; Jeremy Hornsby (1979). All You Need Is Ears. London and Basingstoke: MacMillan London Ltd. ISBN 0 333 23859 1. 
  3. ^ George Martin; Jeremy Hornsby (1979). All You Need Is Ears. London and Basingstoke: MacMillan London Ltd. ISBN 0 333 23859 1. 
  4. ^ Harry, Bill (2003). The Paul McCartney Encyclopedia. Virgin Publishing. 
  5. ^ [1] Archived March 4, 2013, at the Wayback Machine.
  6. ^ a b Live And Let Die (Vinyl back cover). Various Artists. United Artists Records, Inc. 1973. UA-LA-100G. 


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