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A Fifth Of Beethoven by Walter Murphy

Album: Saturday Night FeverReleased: 1976Charted:
  • This Disco instrumental was an adaptation of Beethoven's 5th Symphony. Convenient, since Classical music is in the public domain and free to use.
  • Walter Murphy was an orchestral leader who studied both Classical and Jazz music piano at the Manhattan School of Music. At one time he was the arranger for Doc Severinsen and The Tonight Show orchestra. Murphy played nearly every instrument on this song but was forced to credit it to an imaginary ensemble. It took 20 weeks to reach #1 and Murphy never achieved another top 40 hit on the Hot 100. The closest he got was this song's follow-up "Flight 76," based on Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov's "Flight of the Bumblebee," which peaked at #44 and 1982's medley of "Themes From E.T. (The Extra-Terrestrial)," which reached #47. Murphy switched to writing jingles and music for TV shows and in 2002 his song "You've Got A Lot To See," written for an episode of the cartoon Family Guy, won the 2002 Emmy Award for Outstanding Music and Lyrics.
  • This featured on the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack.
  • Robin Thicke's 2002 debut single, "When I Get You Alone," sampled this song.
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Comments: 5

Walter Murphy does the music for "Family Guy" on TV.Neal - Hooterville, Mi
Sounds a little bit like the "Judge Judy" theme song.Jj - Washington, Dc
It'd be awesome if this were two-fifths of Beethoven. Then it would last longer! Better yet, one-half! Because 2/2 disco is being played at normal pace, not too slow, some orchestra parts sound as if they're having to be played a little fast to keep up w/ the beat. But I'm just telling what *I* hear. Y'all others may hear it a little differently.Drew - B\'ham, Al
Robin Thicke's version sucks! Heard it the other day. He took a perfectly good disco song (if there is such a thing) and ruined it. He added some incomprehensible words and raps to the song. The dude can't even carry a tune. Whatever happened to originality?Clovis - Boca Raton, Fl
This was seen on an episode of Family Guy,when Joe,Cleaveland,Quagmire,and Peter were picking up Meg,and they were rollerskating to this.Jennifer Harris - Grand Blanc, Mi