| Bassey, Madonna: 007 & 000
Los Angeles, Nov. 24 (AP): When it comes to James Bond theme songs, nobodys done it better than Carly Simon except maybe Shirley Bassey.
Some of them endure especially the signature theme by the John Barry Orchestra, introduced at the start of the franchise in 1962s Dr No while others have come and gone as quickly as Bond girls. Theyve all unquestionably been products of their times, though, including You Know My Name by Audioslave lead singer Chris Cornell, which opens Casino Royale.
A look at some of the best and worst tunes from the past 21 films:
Nobody Does It Better from The Spy Who Loved Me (1977). Many would choose the next song on the list, and theyd be totally justified. But this one just stands out after all these years. The touches of melancholy in Simons haunting vocals mix with the mystery required of any great Bond tune.
Goldfinger (1964). A complete classic in the canon, of course. The combination of Basseys big, jazzy vocals and Barrys orchestra interweaving pieces of the Bond theme make this a perfect song for the franchise.
Live and Let Die (1973). The rockingest song Paul McCartney and Wings ever came up with, it was the theme for Roger Moores first time as Bond, and one of the few times wed be able to take him seriously in the role.
A View to a Kill (1985). One of the whinier songs from Duran Duran, but they were at the height of their powers at this point, and the air of international intrigue theyd created for themselves through their jet-set videos made them a perfect fit for the worlds most famous superspy.
Thunderball (1965). Tom Jones at his most swinging and schmaltzy; the song definitely captures the lavish romance and unabashed extravagance of the franchise.
For Your Eyes Only (1981). It probably seemed like a good idea at the time. Sheena Easton was hot. And the Scottish beauty actually appears on screen to perform it, the only time in the entire Bond history.
The Living Daylights (1987). Did you remember that the Norwegian trio a-ha had another song besides Take On Me' Yeah, didnt think so. This one definitely sounds dated, all tinny and hollow from the synthesizers, and its too happy. As forgettable as Timothy Dalton, appearing here in the first of only two Bond turns.
All Time High from Octopussy (1983). Just a syrupy, lame, corny love song by Rita Coolidge.
Die Another Day (2002). A product of Madonnas unfortunate electronica phase. She also had a brief cameo in the movie, Pierce Brosnans last. Not one of her better songs, but at least its one of her better acting performances.