Mannix | Collectors’ Choice
The “rare beat” crowd has been clamoring for a re-release of this legendary source of funky samples and DJ grooves, a purported soundtrack for the popular detective show that ran between 1967 and 1975. The improbably waltzing “Mannix Theme” (Schifrin’s second-best-known cult TV motif after the timeless “Mission: Impossible”) introduces a 1969 set of full-length, fully fleshed-out impressions on cues that the jazzman had composed for the program. A classically trained Argentine pianist and arranger brought to America by Dizzy Gillespie, Schifrin would go on to create the influential scores for Dirty Harry, Bullitt, and Enter the Dragon. Mannix prefigures his later work with something for every taste, from the relentless drive (and breakbeat!) of “Turn Every Stone” to gentle bossa nova to the wordless vocals and urbane piano of “The End of Night” (think an apocryphal collaboration between Mancini and Morricone). It’s a time capsule from an era when prime-time jazz briefly opened up to allow Schifrin’s eccentric flute-and-percussion arrangements (“The Shadow”) and even outright psychedelia (“Fear”).