Derek Watkins: The James Bond Trumpeter | The Music of Bond Podcast #003

On this week’s Music Of Bond, hosts Warren and Chris chat about a real unsung hero of the James Bond franchise – the 007 Trumpeter Derek Watkins.

Derek has played on the soundtrack for every film from Dr. No to Skyfall, and has undoubtedly helped shape the sound of the films. We also speak to a colleague and Derek’s widow Wendy about his unbelievable career.

Note: The Music of Bond series is audio only and will not be available on Youtube.

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  • Another brilliant podcast!

    Watkins plays on two of my favourite jazz albums of all time: “Windmill Tilter” and “Music for Large & Small Ensembles” by flugelhorn/trumpet player Kenny Wheeler. I’ve got him on other albums by Wheeler too. I love the contrast between Wheeler’s sound and Watkins’. Though they were both top players on the same instruments, their talents were so different. As I learned from the John Altman interview, Wheeler played on the GoldenEye tank chase music.

    I saw the video of Thomas Newman talking about Derek Watkins, and his excitement about Watkins did not seem genuine. It was like he felt that he had to include Watkins because he was a part of the furniture but wanted him to be a footrest instead of the best chair in the room. I didn’t feel from that interview that Newman respects what Watkins brought to the history of Bond music. From Newman’s music for Bond overall I don’t feel that he respects the history of Bond music in general, and just gives throwaway Bondian moments because he feels that he has to.

    • Warren Ringham

      Hey Matt, great to hear from you again –

      I didn’t feel that about TN’s interview personally, and I have it on good authority it definitely wasn’t how it went down anyway 🙂

      Are you on FB? Get in touch with me on there. You make some interesting points!

      Best, Warren

      • I’m very happy to be wrong! I’ve been unnecessarily been holding a grudge against Newman because of that interview for the past four years. Watkins deserves the utmost respect. He was one of a kind!

  • Dennis James Hardin

    Great podcast!!! Fascinating info on Derek Watkins. A true Bond legend!

    • Warren Ringham

      Cheers Dennis!

  • Langford

    Warren, great work! Honestly, I think an audiobook compilation of these music-based podcasts would be great. I’m not a musician so it’s even more educational for me.

    Langford, Station A

  • Aden Oxford

    Well done Warren (and Chris), great episode.

    Never knew what an influence Derek was on the whole sound of Bond… Now I can appreciate the trumpet (and flugelhorn!) a bit better!