published Monday, February 24th, 2014

Get Off The Couch: Great music on the horizon

BARRY COURTER: Lisa, can you imagine watching “Jaws” without that “duuunuut,” “duuuunuuuut,” “duunuut,” “dunut” soundtrack? Or the “reek, reek, reek” screeching strings in “Psycho?” Or Bugs Bunny without the music?

Somebody had to come up with that music, and the films or cartoons would be way different without it. Our friend George S. Clinton, who scored the “Mortal Kombat,” “Austin Powers” and “Santa Clause” movies, is again hosting a big-time event in town next week. It’s gone global in its second year and is now called the Chattanooga International Film Music Festival. It’s a Chattanooga Symphony & Opera event and will run Friday through Sunday.

LISA DENTON: Yes, and even a casual watcher of movie credits will recognize this year’s special guest. Alan Silvestri has two Academy Award nominations: Best Original Score for “Forrest Gump” and Best Original Song for “Believe” from “The Polar Express.” He won a Grammy for “Believe” and another for Best Instrumental Composition for the music that played during the end credits on the film “Cast Away.” He’s also the man behind the music in the “Back to the Future” trilogy.

And that’s just a portion of his resumé. He’s a busy, busy man.

BARRY: I went to a session last year and it was fascinating. These are some of the best composers in the world, and they share their secrets and methods. It’s a great opportunity for anyone who thinks they might want to score films, but it’s also great fun for any film buff. This is the real deal, and the ultimate goal is to make it the biggest and best such event in the world.

LISA: It’s $195 to sign up for everything over the three days ($50 for students), but you can go to a screening of “Back to the Future,” which includes a Q&A with Silvestri, for $15. And tickets to the two CSO Pops performances — “Singin’ in the Rain” and “Hooray for Hollywood” — start at $19.

BARRY: Speaking of the real deal, Shovels & Rope is coming back to town. I love this duo. They played JJ’s Bohemia back in 2012 and were slotted to play Riverbend last year before signing on for a big tour in another part of the world. They are booked at Bonnaroo this year. They’ll be at Rhythm & Brews on Sunday.

LISA: These two make beautiful music, for sure, and their name just sounds so practical — like their other options might have been Towels & Hot Water or WD-40 & Duct Tape.

BARRY: If they haven’t already, I bet they could make music with towels and hot water and even duct tape. I know it makes me sing when I rip it off my legs. Don’t ask. And as awesome as WD-40 is, I’m not sure it can be used to make music.

LISA: No, but I bet it would take the squeak out of my voice.

Contact Barry Courter at or 423-757-6354. Contact Lisa Denton at or 423-757-6281.

about Barry Courter...

Barry Courter is staff reporter and columnist for the Times Free Press. He started his journalism career at the Chattanooga News-Free Press in 1987. He covers primarily entertainment and events for ChattanoogaNow, as well as feature stories for the Life section. Born in Lafayette, Ind., Barry has lived in Chattanooga since 1968. He graduated from Notre Dame High School and the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga with a degree in broadcast journalism. He previously was ...

about Lisa Denton...

Lisa Denton is deputy features editor and content editor of Current. She previously was a lifestyle, entertainment and region reporter/pod leader for The Chattanooga Times, which she joined in 1983. Lisa is from Sale Creek and holds an associate’s degree in journalism from Chattanooga State Community College. Contact Lisa at 423-757-6281 or

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