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Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy albums and singles
Description (from Wikipedia):
The first four radio episodes of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy were adapted for a new double LP, also entitled The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (appended with "Part One" for the subsequent Canadian release), first by mail-order only, and later into stores. The double LP and its sequel were originally released by Original Records in the United Kingdom in 1979 and 1980, with the catalogue numbers ORA042 and ORA054 respectively. They were first released by Hannibal Records in 1982 (as HNBL 2301 and HNBL 1307, respectively) in the United States and Canada, and later re-released in a slightly abridged edition by Simon & Schuster's Audioworks in the mid-1980s. Both were produced by Geoffrey Perkins and featured cover artwork by Hipgnosis.
The script in the first double LP very closely follows the first four radio episodes, although further cuts had to be made for reasons of timing. Despite this, other lines of dialogue that were indicated as having been cut when the original scripts from the radio series were eventually published can be heard in the LP version. The Simon & Schuster cassettes omit the Veet Voojagig narration, the cheerleader's speech as Deep Thought concludes its seven-and-one-half-million-year programme, and a few other lines from both sides of the second LP of the set.
Most of the original cast returned, except for Susan Sheridan, who was recording a voice for the character of Princess Eilonwy in The Black Cauldron for Walt Disney Pictures. Cindy Oswin voiced Trillian on all three LPs in her place. Other casting changes in the first double LP included Stephen Moore taking on the additional role of the barman, and Valentine Dyall as the voice of Deep Thought. Adams's voice can be heard making the Public Address announcements on Magrathea.
Due to copyrights, the music used during the first radio series was either replaced, or in the case of the title, it was re-recorded in a new arrangement. Composer Tim Souster did both duties (with Paddy Kingsland contributing music as well), and Souster's version of the theme was the version also used for the eventual television series.
The sequel LP was released, singly, as The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy Part Two: The Restaurant at the End of the Universe in the UK, and simply as The Restaurant at the End of the Universe in the USA. The script here mostly follows Fit the Fifth and Fit the Sixth, but includes a song by the backup band in the restaurant ("Reg Nullify and his Cataclysmic Combo"), and changes the Haggunenon sequence to "Disaster Area".
Due to a misunderstanding, the second record was released before being cut down in a "final edit" that Douglas Adams and Geoffrey Perkins both had intended to make. Perkins has said, "[I]t is far too long on each side. It's just a rough cut. [...] I felt it was flabby, and I wanted to speed it up." The Simon & Schuster Audioworks re-release of this LP was also abridged slightly from its original release. The scene with Ford Prefect and Hotblack Desiato's bodyguard is omitted.
Sales for the first double-LP release were primarily through mail order. Total sales reached over 60,000 units, with half of those being mail order, and the other half through retail outlets. This is in spite of the facts that Original Records' warehouse ordered and stocked more copies than they were actually selling for quite some time, and that Paul Neil Milne Johnstone complained about his name and then-current address being included in the recording. This was corrected for a later pressing of the double-LP by "cut[ting] up that part of the master tape and reassembl[ing] it in the wrong order". The second LP release ("Part Two") also only sold a total of 60,000 units in the UK. The distribution deals for the USA and Canada with Hannibal Records and Simon and Schuster were later negotiated by Douglas Adams and his agent, Ed Victor, after gaining full rights to the recordings from Original Records, which went bankrupt.
Stephen Moore released two pop singles — Marvin/Metal Man and Reasons To Be Miserable/Marvin I Love You (double B-side) — in the UK in 1981, though neither reached the top 40. Two of these were re-recorded and remixed to coincide with the 2005 Hitchhiker's movie release, "Reasons To Be Miserable" and "Marvin" now being performed by Stephen Fry (singing in the third-person, not as Marvin).
"Marvin" was released in 1981. It was a minor hit, reaching number 52 in the British Charts.
The song involves Marvin describing his woes ("My moving parts are in a solid state") and frustrations ("You know what really makes me mad? They clean me with a Brillo Pad"), to a synthesizer backing. The intro to the song consists of a simple guitar figure, but with the tape reversed so that the notes play backwards.
The vocal was performed by Stephen Moore, who had played Marvin on the radio and television series. Moore also narrated the ship's captain on the B-side.
"Metal Man" was the B-side. The song involves a spoken exchange between the starship captain and the depressed robot Marvin. The starship is falling into a black hole, and can only be saved by assigning control to Marvin. In thanks for saving the ship, Marvin is relegated back to a menial servant. Such is the lot of a robot.
The Double B-Side
"Reasons To Be Miserable" was released in 1981. Its official title was The Double 'B'-Side, and it was a double B-side single released by Polydor on Depressive Discs. The song involves Marvin describing his views on life ("I'd feel a little better if they broke me up for spares", "If I had my time again, I'd rather be a lemming"), to a synthesizer backing.
"Marvin I Love You" was the other B-side. Marvin describes finding a love letter in his data banks eons after receiving it. The female vocal is provided by Kimi Wong-O'Brien.
1979 The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy double album
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