Music By: John Barry, John Philip Sousa
James Bond Theme: Monty Norman
Song Written By: Tim Rice ("All Time High")
Song Performed By: Rita Coolidge ("All Time High")
Album Label: A&M Records
Single Label: A&M Records
Highest Chart Position:
The score for the thirteenth James Bond
film was composed by John Barry, with song lyrics by
Tim Rice. "All Time High" marked the return of
regular James Bond theme composer John Barry after his
absence from the "For Your Eyes Only" soundtrack:
the lyrics were written by Tim Rice and recording and mixing
track is credited to Stephen Short
The opening theme is sung by Rita Coolidge and
is one of five musical themes or songs that are not named after
film's title, the others being "Nobody Does It Better" from
"The Spy Who Loved Me" (although
the film's title is referred to in the song's lyrics); "We
Have All The Time In The World" from
On Her Majesty's Secret Service"; "You Know
My Name" from
"Casino Royale"; and "Another Way to Die" from
"Quantum of Solace".
Prior to Rita Coolidge being assigned
the "Octopussy" theme a contender
was Mari Wilson a British singer whose retro-image
evoked the mid-'60s when the Bond series originated, but Wilson's
lack of a US-profile led to a negative decision. The producers
were known to have been in negotiations with Laura
Branigan then a top ranking hitmaker in the US and Europe.
The ultimate choice of Coolidge whose
career peak had occurred some six years previously was
a surprising one. Coolidge recalls that Barbara Broccoli,
the assistant director of Octopussy, was a fan of Coolidge
and made a point of playing Coolidge records around her
Cubby Broccoli til "one
day [he said], "Who is that? That's the voice I want
for the movie.'...in the studio [Tim Rice] was still finishing
the song. We were waiting for the lyrics as the track had
already been done."
Rice made no effort to incorporate the
film's title but the lyric: "We're two of a kind" is
a line spoken by the title character (played by Maud
to James Bond (Roger Moore). The song's title "All
Time High" parallels that of Coolidge's #2 hit "(Your
Love Has Lifted Me) Higher and Higher" whose lyric "When
you wrap your loving arms around me I can stand up and
face the world again" is echoed by the "All Time
High" lyric "We'll take on the world and win"
Above: Cover art from the Rykodisc
The original compact disc released in 1983, by A&M Records, was recalled
because of a printing error, and became a rarity. In 1997, the soundtrack was
released, by Rykodisc, with the original soundtrack music and some film dialogue
on an Enhanced CD version. The 2003 release, by EMI, restored the original soundtrack
music sans dialogue.
The original music video of "All Time High" shows Rita Coolidge in
very soft focus in an Indian palace, but it was in fact the Royal Pavilion in
and not one of the film's locations.
"All Time High" reached #36 on the
Billboard Hot 100 - marking Coolidge's last appearance on that
chart - in August of 1983. Adult Contemporary Radio was much
more receptive, with that genre allowing "All Time High" four
weeks at #1. Coolidge had previously topped the Adult Contemporary
chart in 1977 with "We're All Alone" although that
track's ascendancy had been a given in light of its #7 Hot 100
peak whereas "All Time High" topped the A/C charts
while exhibiting fairly mild momentum in the mainstream Pop arena.
Despite being the lowest charting James
Bond theme in the UK where it reached #75 ("The
Man With the Golden Gun" by Lulu failed to chart in 1974
- at that time the chart was limited to the Top 50 - and "Moonraker" by
Shirley Bassey fell short of the Top 75 in 1979), "All
Time High" became a major hit in several European
countries: Austria - #14; Germany - #13; the Netherlands
- #8; Sweden - #8 and Switzerland - #7. Of those countries
Coolidge had only previously charted in the Netherlands
(with "We're All Alone" - #15/1977) which was
also the only one of those countries where she'd chart
again - ("I Stand in Wonder" - #56/1999).
According to the Billboard Book of Number
One Adult Contemporary Hits by Wesley Hyatt, Coolidge considered "All Time
High" to be an unfinished work and customarily would
include the song in concert via her backing musicians playing
it as an overture rather than singing it as part of her
program. However Coolidge did state in 2006: "It is
a wonderful song and I am very proud to be a part of that
family [of James Bond theme singers]."
"All Time High" was not originally featured
on "Never Let You Go" the Rita Coolidge album
released in October 1983 although it does occur on some
pressings. Since 1998 "All Time High" has been
included on several Coolidge anthology releases including
a 2001 retrospective on Spectrum Records entitled All Time
Above: Cover art from the A&M Records
single of "All Time High". The second track was an
extended instrumental version.
In 2006, when asked: "Which song [of yours]
has been the biggest earner in terms of royalties?", Tim
Rice first mentioned "Don't Cry For Me Argentina", "Can
You Feel the Love Tonight" and "A Whole New World",
then added: ""All Time High" is another one that
just keeps on earning."
From The Label
John Barry (1983) OCTOPUSSY is one of Roger Moore's last outings
as the world famous James Bond. In this action adventure, 007
takes on an evil Afghan and a glamorous woman (no surprises there)
who plot to plunder Tsarist treasures and start WW III. Composer
John Barry is known for his signature Bond work, as well as for
the soundtracks to the Oscar®-winning Dances With Wolves
and Out of Africa. The lyrics to the theme song "All Time
High" (sung by Rita Coolidge) were written by Tim Rice.
/ 2003 Remastered
1. "All Time High"
2. "Bond Look-Alike"
3. "009 Gets the Knife and Gobinda Attacks"*
4. "That's My Little Octopussy"
5. "Arrival at the Island of Octopussy"
6. "Bond at the Monsoon Palace"
7. "Bond Meets Octopussy"
8. "Yo-Yo Fight and Death of Vijay"
9. "The Chase Bomb Theme"
10. "The Palace Fight"
11. "All Time High (Movie Version)"
1. "All Time High"
2. "Bond Look-Alike"
3. "Miss Penelope"—dialogue
4. "009 Gets the Knife and Gobinda Attacks"
5. "That's My Little Octopussy"
6. "Arrival at the Island of Octopussy"
7. "Introducing Mr Bond"—dialogue
8. "Bond at the Monsoon Palace"
9. "Bond Meets Octopussy"
10. "Poison Pen"—dialogue
11. "Yo-Yo Fight and Death of Vijay"
12. "The Chase Bomb Theme"*
13. "The Palace Fight"
14. "All Time High"
* In the Remastered Version Gobinda is misspelled Gorbinda.
* Later pressings of the soundtrack erroneously call it "The
Chase Bond Theme".
Total Time (Original Release): 35:39
Total Time (2003 Remastered): 36:05