Friends, Cheers, MASH, Golden Girls, Facts of Life, and Greatest American Hero (see title – and YouTube clip). What do these shows have in common? Memorable theme songs. Even though MASH didn’t use the lyrics (suicide is painless didn’t really fit the show) the song is hummable.
What happened to theme songs? Some new shows have them, like Community, New Girl, and Psych, but most of the times they’re short – very short. New Girl especially. Who’s that Girl? It’s Jess! That’s it most times, although there is a slightly longer version. Psych does this too – they have a short version and a longer version.
I’m partial to theme songs. I have…let me count…six CDs dedicated only to TV theme songs. And when I did my solo cabaret show six years ago my musical director, Steven Ray Watkins, my director, Lennie Watts, and I came up with an amazing TV theme song medley which started with the entire song from Facts of Life and ended with the entire song from Golden Girls. It was my favorite part of my show, and I loved everything about my show (thanks guys!), but every night when I got to the TV part I felt alive, I felt electric.
Want to know my favorite theme song? My absolute favorite? It will surprise you. Perfect Strangers. Yup, that silly show with Balki and Cousin Larry (see YouTube clip #2). I adore it and it’s message. It’s called Nothing’s Gonna Stop Me Now and it’s only 1 minute and 15 seconds long, but I love it. My favorite part: Standing tall on the wings of my dream. Rise and fall on the wings of my dream. The rain and thunder, the clouds and haze, I’m bound for better days.
It’s uplifting and I sing along at the tops of my lungs every time I play it. It makes me happy and gives me courage to keep trying. To stand tall on the wings of my dream.