The name is Bond…James Bond. Ian Fleming’s iconic persona James Bond has no doubt left a permanent mark in cinematic history with 25 films spanning 7 decades, but the James Bond series has also produced some legendary movie themes as well. As we prepare for the premiere of the 25th 007 film, No Time to Die, here are my top ten favorite Bond themes:
10. “Die Another Day” was performed by Madonna for the 2002 Bond film. The Golden Globe and Grammy Award-nominated title song was composed by Madonna and Mirwais Ahmadzaï. The song is also infamous for being described as the worst Bond theme of all time by Elton John.
9. “The Living Daylights” was performed by Norwegian pop group A-ha for the 1987 film, which saw Timothy Dalton debut as new Bond in the first of two films. The title track was composed by the group’s Paul Waaktaar-Savoy and John Barry. This was Barry’s final score for a Bond film.
8. “All Time High” by Rita Coolidge was written by John Barry and Tim Rice for the 1983 Bond film, Octopussy and is one of the few Bond themes that doesn’t include the film’s title.
7. “Nobody Does It Better” written by Marvin Hamlisch and Carole Bayer Sager and sung by Carly Simon from 1977’s The Spy Who Loved Me. The movie theme was a major worldwide hit and spent three weeks at number two on the US Billboard Hot 100, earning a Grammy nomination and selling over a million copies.
6. “For Your Eyes Only” was performed by Sheena Easton, who also featured in the 1981 film’s title sequence, the first and only time a musical artist was included in a Bond film’s opening titles. The film’s title song was co-written by Bill Conti and Michael Leeson, which made Australian newcomer Easton a household name on the pop music scene.
5. “The World is Not Enough” by American rock band Garbage, served as the title song for the nineteenth James Bond film in 1999. The top ten title track was co-produced by Garbage and written by David Arnold with Don Black. The lyrics, sung by Garbage lead singer Shirley Manson, detail the film’s storyline of seduction and global domination.
4. “GoldenEye” performed by Tina Turner, was the title song for the 1995 blockbuster, which was the first of four Bond films starring Pierce Brosnan as the ultimate spy. The movie’s ostentatious theme was composed by Bono and the Edge from U2.
3. “A View to a Kill” performed by Duran Duran was the theme to the 1985 movie, which was Roger Moore’s final Bond film. The title song became a number one hit for Simon Le Bon and company, which was co-written by Duran Duran and John Barry.
2. “Skyfall” was the title theme for the twenty-third James Bond film of the same name. The title song was performed by Adele and was nominated for and won an Oscar at the 85th Academy Awards ceremony in 2013 for Best Original Song. The title song was written by Adele Adkins and Paul Epworth.
1. “Live and Let Die” was the title track performed by Paul McCartney and Wings for the 1973 film of the same name. Live and Let Die introduced the world to Roger Moore with his silver screen debut as the series’ renowned character. “Live and Let Die” reached number one on the pop charts and was the most successful Bond theme at the time of its release.