The Streets of San Francisco

There’s a lot going on here in just over a minute’s worth of music. But I’ve managed to unravel and transcribe the complexities of this very cool instrumental, that some consider their favorite TV theme of all time.

I can’t help but love the 1972 “cop drama” minor-key of this piece; the rapid fusionesque drum and percussion rhythms that take us back to Dirty Harry, the syncopated and wah-wah guitars of the era, the free sax fills, the uber-cool walking jazz bass in the bridge, the French Connection-style dissonance from the trumpets, the frantic French horn lines that sound like they’re struggling to keep up, and the anchoring “blat” of the low trombones.

I remember when this TV show first aired, my Dad, a Bay Area native, would frequently identify and call out San Francisco street names and landmarks as he recognized the many on-location scenes. A fond memory.

It certainly felt very special to be able to demystify and transcribe this piece, then to record it with some of my favorite musicians.

Resources:

The Streets of San Francisco TV Show Theme - Trumpet Sax Trombone charts. Transcribed by Gary Badger - www.GaryBadger.com

Transcribed by me and free for you to use.

What do you think? Please leave a comment and let me know.

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