Author Topic: Top 101 TV Theme Songs in History: Rolling Stone magazine  (Read 2703 times)

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Offline Ralph Wiggum

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Top 101 TV Theme Songs in History: Rolling Stone magazine
« on: December 11, 2022, 07:39:46 PM »
As with most lists, your mileage may vary on the results. While there are about a dozen of which I'm not familiar, can't really quibble too much. There are a few that I noticed that weren't included: Perry Mason, The Facts of Life, and Californication are just examples.

At the link, there is a quick synopsis and the video/audio of each of the 101 (you'll discover why 101 rather than just 100):

100 - ‘WandaVision’, Disney+, 2021
99 - ‘Terriers’, FX, 2010
98 - ‘Three’s Company’, ABC, 1977-84
97 - ‘Rescue Me’, FX, 2004-11
96 - ‘CHiPs’, NBC, 1977-83
95 - ‘The Partridge Family’, ABC, 1970-74
94 - ‘New Girl’, Fox, 2011-18
93 - ‘I Dream of Jeannie’, NBC, 1965-70
92 - ‘All That’, Nickelodeon, 1994-2005, 2019-20
91 - ‘Have Gun, Will Travel’, CBS, 1957-63
90 - ‘The Walking Dead’, AMC, 2010-22
89 - ‘The Olympics’, ABC/CBS/NBC, 1956-Present
88 - ‘Stranger Things’, Netflix, 2016-Present
87 - ‘The Big Bang Theory’, CBS, 2007-19
86 - ‘The Flintstones’, ABC, 1960-66
85 - ‘Dallas’, CBS, 1978-91
84 - ‘The Leftovers,’ Season Two, HBO, 2015
83 - ‘Pachinko’, Apple TV+, 2022-Present
82 – ‘Where in the World Is Carmen Sandiego?’, PBS, 1991-95
81 - ‘The Dick Van Dyke Show’, CBS, 1961-66
80 - ‘Green Acres’, CBS, 1965-71
79 - ‘Mad Men’, AMC, 2007-15
78 - ‘WKRP in Cincinnati’, CBS, 1978-82
77 - ‘Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!’, CBS, 1969-70
76 - ‘Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson’, NBC, 1962-92
75 - ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’, WB, 1997-2001; UPN, 2001-2003
74 - ‘Moonlighting’, ABC, 1985-89
73 - ‘Boondocks’, Adult Swim, Teletoon, 2004-15
72 - ‘Malcolm in the Middle’, Fox, 2000-06
71 - ‘Parks and Recreation’, NBC, 2009-15
70 - ‘Phineas & Ferb’, Disney Channel, 2008-15
69 - ‘Full House’, ABC, 1987-95
68 - ‘S.W.A.T.’, ABC, 1975-76
67 - ‘Dawson’s Creek’, WB, 1998-2003
66 - ‘Happy Days’, ABC, 1974-84
65 - ‘Peacemaker’, HBO Max, 2022-Present
64 - ‘The Wonder Years’, ABC, 1988-93
63 - ‘Taxi’, ABC, 1978-82; NBC, 1982-83
62 - ‘Friday Night Lights’, NBC, 2006-11
61 - ‘The Drew Carey Show’, ABC, 1995-2004
60 - ‘The Odd Couple’, ABC, 1970-75
59 - ‘The Andy Griffith Show’, CBS, 1960-68
58 - ‘Frasier’, NBC, 1993-2004
57 - ‘Welcome Back, Kotter’, ABC, 1975-79
56 - ‘Seinfeld’, NBC, 1989-98
55 - ‘M*A*S*H’, CBS, 1972-83
54 - ‘Lost’, ABC, 2004-10
53 – ‘Diff’rent Strokes’, NBC, 1978-85; ABC, 1985-86
52 - ‘In Living Color’, Fox, 1990-94
51 - ‘Match Game’, CBS/Syndicated, 1973-82
50 - ‘Sesame Street’, PBS, 1969-Present; HBO, 2016-20; HBO Max, 2020-Present
49 - ‘How to Make It in America’, HBO, 2010-11
48 - ‘The Love Boat’, ABC, 1977-86
47 - “Orange Is the New Black”, Netflix, 2013-19
46 - ‘Bonanza’, NBC, 1959-73
45 - “Gilmore Girls”, (WB, 2000-2006; CW, 2006-2007)
44 - ‘Living Single’, Fox, 1993-98
43 - ‘Law & Order’, NBC, 1990-2010; 2022-Present
42 - ‘SpongeBob SquarePants’, Nickelodeon, 1999-Present
41 - ‘Sex and the City’, HBO, 1998-2004
40 - ‘The Monkees’, NBC, 1966-68
39 - ‘The X-Files’, Fox, 1993-2002, 2016-18
38 - ‘The Golden Girls’, NBC, 1985-92
37 - ‘Dragnet’, NBC, 1951-59, 1967-70
36 - ‘Laverne & Shirley’, ABC, 1976-83
35 - ‘Twin Peaks’, ABC, 1990-91; Showtime, 2017
34 - ‘The Dukes of Hazzard’, CBS, 1979-85
33 - ‘The Addams Family’, ABC, 1964-66
32 - ‘Miami Vice’, NBC, 1984-89
31 - ‘The Mary Tyler Moore Show’, CBS, 1970-77
30 - ‘One Day at a Time’, CBS, 1975-84; Netflix, 2017-19; Pop, 2020
29 - ‘The Greatest American Hero’, ABC, 1981-83
28 - ‘Good Times’, CBS, 1974-79
27 - ‘Hill Street Blues’, NBC, 1981-87
26 – ‘Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt’, (Netflix, 2015-2019)
25 – ‘Succession’, HBO, 2018-Present
24 - ‘Star Trek’, NBC, 1966-69
23 - ‘It’s Garry Shandling’s Show’, Showtime, 1986-90
22 - ‘Peter Gunn’, NBC, 1958-60; ABC, 1960-61
21- ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’, HBO, 2000-Present
20 - ‘All in the Family’, CBS, 1971-79
19 - ‘The Sopranos’, HBO, 1999-2007
18 - ‘The Simpsons’, Fox, 1989-Present
17 - ‘The Muppet Show’, ITV (U.K.)/CBS (U.S. Syndication), 1976-81
16 - ‘The Rockford Files’, NBC 1974-80
15 - ‘Mission: Impossible’, CBS, 1966-73
14 - ‘The Wire’, HBO, 2002-08
13 - ‘Cheers’, NBC, 1982-93
12 - ‘Hawaii Five-O’, CBS, 1968-80
11 - ‘Game of Thrones’, HBO, 2011-19
10 - ‘Too Many Cooks’, Adult Swim, 2014
9 – ‘The O.C.’, Fox, 2003-07
8 - ‘Friends’, NBC, 1994-2004
7 - ‘The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air’, NBC, 1990-96
6 - ‘The Twilight Zone’, (CBS, 1959-'64)
5 - ‘Mister Rogers‘ Neighborhood’, PBS, 1968-2001
4 – ‘Crazy Ex-Girlfriend’, CW, 2015-19
3 - ‘Sanford and Son’, NBC, 1972-77
2 - TIE: ‘The Brady Bunch’ and ‘Gilligan’s Island’, ABC, 1969-74; CBS, 1964-67
1 - ‘The Jeffersons’, CBS, 1975-85

https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-lists/best-tv-theme-songs-of-all-time-1234630913/

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Offline freedumb2003b

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Re: Top 101 TV Theme Songs in History: Rolling Stone magazine
« Reply #1 on: December 11, 2022, 10:35:43 PM »
No Mannix?  Or Charmed (original)? Thunderbirds? Fireball XL5? Speed Racer? Touched by an Angel? And has that banal Friends theme? 

screwed up list but have to agree with Sanford and Jeffersons being in the top.
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Offline Eupher

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Re: Top 101 TV Theme Songs in History: Rolling Stone magazine
« Reply #2 on: December 12, 2022, 06:25:41 AM »
Quincy Jones, and Mike Post/Pete Carpenter have been absolute rock stars with composing these theme tunes. Instantly recognizable, they've been able to lock that quality in -- especially Quincy Jones, who wrote Sanford and Son, IIRC.
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Offline FlaGator

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Re: Top 101 TV Theme Songs in History: Rolling Stone magazine
« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2022, 10:10:44 AM »
The Addams Family at 33? That is just insulting.
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Offline Ralph Wiggum

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Re: Top 101 TV Theme Songs in History: Rolling Stone magazine
« Reply #4 on: December 12, 2022, 07:20:32 PM »
Quincy Jones, and Mike Post/Pete Carpenter have been absolute rock stars with composing these theme tunes. Instantly recognizable, they've been able to lock that quality in -- especially Quincy Jones, who wrote Sanford and Son, IIRC.

Totally agreed, their fingerprints are on about a quarter of the Top 100.
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Re: Top 101 TV Theme Songs in History: Rolling Stone magazine
« Reply #5 on: December 12, 2022, 07:22:32 PM »
The Addams Family at 33? That is just insulting.

Agreed and remember, don't shoot the messenger as I didn't produce this list. Certainly "The Addams Family" belongs much higher on the list because of the classic riff.
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Offline Drafe Hoblin

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Re: Top 101 TV Theme Songs in History: Rolling Stone magazine
« Reply #6 on: December 12, 2022, 10:46:31 PM »
Rolling Stone is ridiculous.

I immediately noticed that 'Secret Agent Man' was missing from the list.

No 'Rawhide', 'Perry Mason',  'Highway Patrol',  '77 Sunset Strip' ... etc.  Unbelievable.

Offline enslaved1

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Re: Top 101 TV Theme Songs in History: Rolling Stone magazine
« Reply #7 on: December 13, 2022, 11:23:34 AM »
I see this and think how few new shows that I see (which admittedly isn't very many, I haven't even heard of many of the shows on the list whose year starts with a 2) don't have much of, if any theme songs.  Just a few notes into the opening scene, while credits show at the bottom of the screen.  Short attention spans are to blame, IMHO.
Rolling Stone is ridiculous.

I immediately noticed that 'Secret Agent Man' was missing from the list.

No 'Rawhide', 'Perry Mason',  'Highway Patrol',  '77 Sunset Strip' ... etc.  Unbelievable.

Definitely several that Rawhide and Perry Mason should replace.   

 
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Offline Eupher

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Re: Top 101 TV Theme Songs in History: Rolling Stone magazine
« Reply #8 on: December 13, 2022, 04:02:30 PM »
It's a Brit program and thus isn't "eligible" but the theme music to the 60s The Avengers was catchy.

Henry Mancini wrote the theme to Peter Gunn, which was another good one.
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Offline SVPete

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Re: Top 101 TV Theme Songs in History: Rolling Stone magazine
« Reply #9 on: December 13, 2022, 07:13:27 PM »
"Angela", the theme from Taxi is only #63? ::)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5DL8SGEyhZE

Concur re "Peter Gunn Theme"!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oysMt8iL9UE
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Offline Dblhaul

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Re: Top 101 TV Theme Songs in History: Rolling Stone magazine
« Reply #10 on: December 18, 2022, 10:26:49 PM »
Barney Miller. Great bass line.

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Re: Top 101 TV Theme Songs in History: Rolling Stone magazine
« Reply #12 on: December 19, 2022, 05:35:04 AM »
I suspect that this whole list was an attempt by whatever Hollyweird promotions ...thing to gin up viewership in a a bunch of modern day duds that I've never hear of - and there's probably a good reason why.

After all, twenty, heck even ten to fifteen years ago, I would have seen all those names I don't recognize and probably looked into an episode or three to see what I was missing.

Given the current state of Hollyweird however, I ain't even REMOTELY interested finding out why these shows have never been on my radar. :puke:
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Offline Ralph Wiggum

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Re: Top 101 TV Theme Songs in History: Rolling Stone magazine
« Reply #13 on: December 19, 2022, 08:07:15 AM »
I suspect that this whole list was an attempt by whatever Hollyweird promotions ...thing to gin up viewership in a a bunch of modern day duds that I've never hear of - and there's probably a good reason why.

After all, twenty, heck even ten to fifteen years ago, I would have seen all those names I don't recognize and probably looked into an episode or three to see what I was missing.

Given the current state of Hollyweird however, I ain't even REMOTELY interested finding out why these shows have never been on my radar. :puke:

Agreed, and posted this even though it is essentially clickbait but it leads to more discussion. I'm far too old for the demographic to start watching any of these newer shows, and really don't care much about episodic TV these days. There are a few that I might invest my time in, but it is a far cry from the 80's, 90's, and 00's.
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Offline freedumb2003b

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Re: Top 101 TV Theme Songs in History: Rolling Stone magazine
« Reply #14 on: December 19, 2022, 09:30:52 AM »
Agreed and remember, don't shoot the messenger as I didn't produce this list. Certainly "The Addams Family" belongs much higher on the list because of the classic riff.

There is a hilarious riff on the snapping riff in the fantastic new show Wednesday.
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Offline Drafe Hoblin

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Re: Top 101 TV Theme Songs in History: Rolling Stone magazine
« Reply #15 on: December 26, 2022, 10:34:03 PM »
Don't let anybody kid ya.  Rolling Stone was as bland, formularized, and non cutting-edged as it gets, even in the 60's. 

They didn't 'leave out' Elmer Bernstein's theme for Johnny Staccato (starring John Cassavetes as a jazz-pianist/private detective).  They're so devoted to the safety of pedestrian commercialism that they have no idea who Bernstein, Cassavetes, or Staccato were.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=laHRBNLcovw

And what about Lalo Schifrin's theme for T.H.E. Cat... ?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FOsFtxvpZhg

Offline Eupher

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Re: Top 101 TV Theme Songs in History: Rolling Stone magazine
« Reply #16 on: December 27, 2022, 06:14:02 AM »
Don't let anybody kid ya.  Rolling Stone was as bland, formularized, and non cutting-edged as it gets, even in the 60's. 

They didn't 'leave out' Elmer Bernstein's theme for Johnny Staccato (starring John Cassavetes as a jazz-pianist/private detective).  They're so devoted to the safety of pedestrian commercialism that they have no idea who Bernstein, Cassavetes, or Staccato were.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=laHRBNLcovw

And what about Lalo Schifrin's theme for T.H.E. Cat... ?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FOsFtxvpZhg

Interesting. I've been a musician for 54 years, sometimes even professionally, but I've never read a single article in Rolling Stone. And I also had never heard of Johnny Staccato until now. Elmer, of course, was one of the big theme writers who pre-dated John Williams and he was obvious to everybody. Ditto for Lalo.
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Re: Top 101 TV Theme Songs in History: Rolling Stone magazine
« Reply #17 on: January 08, 2023, 10:18:42 PM »
I would have "Taxi" as number 1. I guess I should be happy it made the list at all. As my number 2 "St Elsewhere' didn't.