SANTA BARBARA: A MUSICAL PORTRAIT - Original Music by Joe Harnell

Dragon's Domain Records


(CD comes with Digital Download / Digital PDF)
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Dragon's Domain Records presents SANTA BARBARA: A MUSICAL PORTRAIT, featuring music composed by Joe Harnell for the soap opera series that ran on NBC daytime television from July 1984 through January 1993. The show was created by Dobson Productions and New World Television—the Dobson family was known for creating GENERAL HOSPITAL and were head writers for GUIDING LIGHT and AS THE WORLD TURNS prior to the debut of SANTA BARBARA; the show was the first TV co-production for the television arm of Roger Corman’s New World Pictures. 

SANTA BARBARA’s storyline followed the lives of several prominent families at odds with one another, set in the Southern California mission town of Santa Barbara. One of the show’s interesting angles was centering one of its major plots around the murder of a prominent citizen, with various characters being accused of the crime, allowing for an ongoing plot thread around and through which many other subplots would intersect across the nine-year arc of the story. The serial became quite popular, winning 24 Daytime Emmy Awards, 18 Soap Opera Digest Awards, and was broadcast in more than 40 countries around the world.

In 1984 Joe Harnell was hired to compose a music library for the SANTA BARBARA series. Due to the daily schedule of soap operas as well as their long duration, original music wasn’t composed for each episode; rather composers like Joe would compose and record a variety of music—pieces that could be used for all manner of situations and circumstances anticipated to be needed for the show’s storyline, which could then be inserted throughout the whole series for various sequences as needed.

Harnell scored a main title theme and approximately four hours of music to give SANTA BARBARA’s music editors plenty of material to cover the serial’s hoped-for duration. He conceived, composed, and orchestrated a wide-ranging musical landscape that could be used for the kinds of situations the producers expected scripts to demand. The music was then recorded by a 40-piece orchestra with emphasis on rhythm section, with Joe himself playing the keyboards. Before the series premiered, however, the producer who hired Joe left and was replaced by a number of new producers; as happens in Hollywood, these new producers wanted to bring in their own people, so Harnell’s entire music library was tossed out and a team of new composers were brought in to write and record their own music library. With one exception: the executive producers loved Joe’s main title theme and insisted it be used as the main title music throughout the serial’s duration.

Dragon's Domain  Records presents the world premiere soundtrack release of SANTA BARBARA: A MUSICAL PORTRAIT in loving memory of the great Joe Harnell. SANTA BARBARA: A MUSICAL PORTRAIT is limited to 500 units and professionally mastered by James Nelson at Digital Outland, including liner notes written by author Randall Larson.

1. Santa Barbara (2:43)
2. Arrival in Santa Barbara (4:34)
3. Lost Love (3:05)
4. Slow Dance (2:55)
5. It Was You (2:26)
6. Light and Happy (2:13)
7. Naughty Girl (2:57)
8. Big Band Boogie (2:07)
9. Young Love (3:15)
10. Lurking In The Basement (3:39)
11. Dinner Music (1:42)
12. Memories of the Past (2:29)
13. Wine & Kisses (2:18)
14. Stalker (3:11)
15. Guitar Source (1:54)
16. South of the Border (1:09)
17. Mexican Band (2:02)
18. Life Choices (2:25)
19. Shopping Time (2:05)
20. The Dark Side (3:18)
21. Things to Do in Town (1:27)
22. Young Lovers Kiss (1:30)
23. High Heels and Stockings (1:53)
24. Running Late (1:58)
25. Wavecrest (1:21)
26. Dreams of Santa Barbara (1:31)
27. Heading Out (1:46)
28. The Killer: Final Case (4:41)
29. Lovers Reunited (3:28)
30. The Sun Sets on Santa Barbara (2:00)
31. Santa Barbara (Reprise) (1:19)
Total Time: 76:37