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The Munificent Musings Of A Maniacal Mammal

I tend to have dozens and dozens and dozens of various music compilation and video edit projects in variations stages of completion cluttering up folders all over my main computer at the house. Some linger as incomplete projects for years. Based on file dates of various files in the folder, this project was begun in April of 2008 and wasn’t finished until August of 2021. To be fair, this was a fairly involved project. What is it, you might ask? It’s a compilation of all sorts of film score performances by The Cincinnati Pops Orchestra, conducted by the late Erich Kunzel (who died in 2009). As a lifelong film score nerd, I grew up listening to various compilation albums of music performed by The Cincinnati Pops under Kunzel’s conducting.

For those decades, their albums tended to be some of the best concert performance recordings of film score music. They weren’t always perfect performances, but they were usually pretty darn good. Another major aspect of their albums was that they were a prolific series of albums for the Telarc classical music label. One of the things that made Telarc notable was their pushing of recording and distribution quality technologies. As such, their Kunzel albums tended to be fun to crank on nice sound systems. The Kunzel series of albums that contained film score music spanned from 1984 through 2007. This compilation features music from 25 of those albums. It contains 186 tracks, totalling 12 hours, 11 minutes and 13 seconds.

There were a handful of challenges with this compilation. The first was tracking down lossless copies of all of their albums that featured film score music. I had physical copies of a majority of them from over the decades. For the ones I didn’t, in some cases I was able to track down lossless quality rips online. For a small handful, I ended up getting used copies of the CDs from Amazon, eBay or Discogs. But in the end, I tracked ’em all down. Another challenge is that it wasn’t unusual for their albums to be partially new performances of stuff and partially recordings from previous albums that fit into the theme of an album. So, it was challenging to figure out which pieces of music I had selected for the compilation had more than once from different albums. I then had to figure out if they were recordings of the same performance, or if they were different performances of the same piece (and in cases like that, I had to decide which performance I preferred). And, of course, another challenge was trying to balance volume levels of material from all those different sources. That was particularly challenging for this project, because the Telarc recordings have VERY wide range in volume, even within a single piece. Just one track can be very quiet and very loud during different parts – more so than typical full orchestra recordings. In some cases, I even boosted levels of certain bits of a single track, so that some parts weren’t so extremely quiet.

Anyway, I hope others can get some enjoyment of the crazy amount of effort this project ended up being, spanning occasional work over more than 13 years. As always, I cleaned up all the meta data and made it as accurate and consistent as I could, including quality album art on a file-by-file bases. If your music playing app supports separate album art per track (which too few do), then you’ll get nice and accurate art for every track. Embedded below is a list of tracks in the compilation, which also includes which album (and thus which year) they are from. Note that the embed scrolls vertically as well as horizontally. Here is a direct link to that embedded Google Sheet. Below are download links for the collection in three music formats, from lowest quality (OPUS) up to highest lossless quality (FLAC).


OPUS 64K (382 MB) | MP3 V0 (1.29 GB) | FLAC (4.37 GB)
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