Art Hitchcock’s playlist ‘to be murdered by’

Hitchcock’s playlist ‘to be murdered by’

Tommaso Berra
Music to be murdered by |

There is a perfect soundtrack for every situation, the right song for grocery shopping, for car journeys, for falling asleep and even for committing murders. Although it sounds strange, there is an entire record created to ‘accompany murders, not commit them’ and it was the cinematic master of fear and suspense, Alfred Hitchcock, who released it.
In 1958, in the wake of the popularity of Alfred Hitchcock Presents, the TV series that brought crime back into the home, ‘where it resides’, the record label Imperial Records decided to release and sell ($4.95 was the price of Fear) an LP, a medium that was guaranteeing considerable sales for the music industry in those years.
Music to Be Murdered By” was born, consisting of ten tracks written or directed by composer Jeff Alexander, which echoed the pattern and themes of the episodes of the series, with Hitchcock introducing the mysteries himself, acting in a frightening and very humorous tone.

The Golden Globe won by Hitchcock in 1958 for his television programme and the release of ‘Vertigo‘ made the director think it was a good time to release his own record, ‘conceived in response to the thousands of requests from my television audience. Apparently, the programme inspired them to commit murders, but did not provide the right soundtrack to do so’.
It is in the black humour that accompanies all the tracks that Hitchcock’s cinematic genius is present, emphasising that ‘this record is meant to accompany murders, not commit them’, and that good music must also be brought to crime, a world in which ‘there are few honest killers. Most of those around are neurotic wrecks with no style and certainly no musical taste’.
The cover of the LP, with the director holding a hatchet and a gun to his temple, will also be taken up by Eminem in the album ‘Music to Be Murdered By‘, largely inspired by the director’s project. Hoping it doesn’t inspire any Psycho-style carnage, you may have just discovered your Halloween soundtrack.

Written by Tommaso Berra
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