Best saloon tracks

I don’t know about you all, but whenever I’m listening to spaghetti scores, there’s one thing I skip every time—no, not the work of Carlo Rustichelli, but those saloon songs, banged out on a honky-tonk piano and a brushed snare. Even in the hands of the masters, those songs all run together for me. I understand the need for them in the diegetic world of the films in which they appear, but when they’re isolated on an album or in a playlist, I’m almost always moving on quickly to the next track.

I rewatched The Big Gundown this week, though, and was reminded that I really like the track that’s most like that on this Morricone score, “Square Dance Nuziale,” played at the wedding near the opening of the film.

So, spaghetti experts: What other tracks of this ilk stand out from the bunch? Which should I reconsider?

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I’m with you on these honky tonk piano things. About as welcome as an over-long and irrelevant fist fight for me.

The best saloon music is nearly always of the torch song lament variety. A good example of which is the song “Death is With Us” in Fury of Johnny Kid.

I disagree :smiley: you’ve got to embrace the quirkiness to get the full benefit of these films.

Saloon music has never been an issue … not even the rather silly dance hall scenes in ‘Beyond the Law’ and 'The Price of Power’

… now, I do have a problem with certain hats and the wearing of blue jeans … but I don’t let it upset me too much. :crazy_face:

I don’t mind them in the films! It’s only when I listen to the score albums on their own that I wind up skipping!

I can’t think of a single SW saloon tune I’d like to listen to as an independent, standalone piece of music. Almost all of those barroom performances verge on the grotesque or on awkwardness, or, to put it more circumspectly, on camp, methinks (e.g. Gwen [Christa Linder] in I giorni dell’ira

It’s time to go, it’s time to go
It’s time to go, to go and look ahead
And never mind, and never mind
Never mind who comes and who will stay
So let’s just go, so let’s just go
So let’s just go, let’s go all away
And never look behind ourselves
Because it’s time to go, it’s time to go, to go, to go

It’s time to go, it’s time to go
It’s time to go, to go around the world
And then we’ll stop, and then we’ll stop
And then we’ll stop just where we want to stay
So let’s just do, so let’s just do
So let’s just do all the things we want to do
And never think about the [our] life and hurry up
Because it’s time to go, to go :crazy_face:

– and Annie [Norma Jordan] in Il prezzo del potere).

The song from Dove si spara di più mentioned above by Phil_H stuck in my mind as exceptionally beautiful but very sad, a melancholic dirge, complemented by María Cuadra’s beauty and elegance, befitting her tragic role as Rosaline (“La muerte está con nosotros” on YouTube).

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Forgot about this one :rofl: it’s pretty bad alright! But the audience seem to love it - plus we get an extreme close up on her crotch to take one’s mind off the terrible lyrics.

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Yes, for no obvious reason other than our voyeuristic pleasure, or, to use Laura Mulvey’s now commonplace term, to pander to the “male gaze.” In this regard – no pun intended – that unwarranted crotch close-up anticipates visual strategies later employed by many music-video directors.

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Haha. Didn’t expect to see Mulvey cited in this thread when I started it! Love seeing critical theory and my love of Italian westerns coming together.

I’m not sure if this counts as a Euro-Western or not, but I would also probably listen to “The Ballad of the Dalton Gang” as a standalone.

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A very nice song.

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