The Newsroom

BBC News nostalgia, including BBC World

Split from BBC News: Presenters, correspondent & rotas

This site closed in March 2021 and is now a read-only archive
RN
Rolling News
Feels weird seeing the countdown with News 24 1999 music!

Also feels weird seeing a headline sequence last 22 seconds!
JW
JamesWorldNews
Glorious times from N9. The sea of clutter in the background always added character, I felt.
JO
johnnyboy Founding member
Feels weird seeing the countdown with News 24 1999 music!

Yes, that situation didn't last very long. The original 10" countdown + symbol leading into the news bulletins was dropped in about October or November 2001 and was replaced by the 60" countdown seen in the video, accompanied by the News 24 countdown music. Once the bulletin music was refreshed in April 2002 (to match The World Today), the countdown music was updated with a brand new composition by David Lowe and remained until the December 2003 relaunch.


I always thought that there was something very special, sublime, and beautiful about that 10 second countdown.

And, for my money, the original bulletin opening music (which, as a sad TVFer, is in fact my mobile ringtone) is way better than the somewhat sonically sparse (in comparison) World Today music.
HA
harshy Founding member
Yeah the 10 second countdown was special, it had that gravitas that we were watching the international news channel from the BBC, and imho hasn’t been surpassed since.

In fact the original music package was also the best, it was way better turn anything on the domestic news channels, but never made sense to me why the music was so much more enhanced for BBC World.
Last edited by harshy on 13 March 2021 11:04am
SP
Steve in Pudsey
Just watching The Wall on BBC One, anyone else think that the tension bed before the answers are revealed sounds a bit like the old BBC World countdown?
RN
Rolling News
Just watching The Wall on BBC One, anyone else think that the tension bed before the answers are revealed sounds a bit like the old BBC World countdown?

Do you mean this?



Seems like Danny Dyer has good taste in music after all.
DE
deejay
That’s from an era when the ABF was no longer working because teletext on BBC world had stopped being supported, so the ABF no longer had a data source. You’ll notice all the break fillers are generic. This was an interim measure before the original “dynamic junction” was introduced, the first few months of which were far from smooth as I recall!
GI
ginnyfan
Feels weird seeing the countdown with News 24 1999 music!

Yes, that situation didn't last very long. The original 10" countdown + symbol leading into the news bulletins was dropped in about October or November 2001 and was replaced by the 60" countdown seen in the video, accompanied by the News 24 countdown music. Once the bulletin music was refreshed in April 2002 (to match The World Today), the countdown music was updated with a brand new composition by David Lowe and remained until the December 2003 relaunch.



It's shocking to realize how briefly BBC's finest music was used. Not just that specific countdown but overall the whole cream/red era was barely 4 years long on World. Compared to what we have now, more than a decade of good music and overall look, but still it's an eternity. Even the dreaded black/red era that followed cream/red was longer.
Last edited by ginnyfan on 13 March 2021 7:43pm
RB
RedButton
Yeah the 10 second countdown was special, it had that gravitas that we were watching the international news channel from the BBC, and imho hasn’t been surpassed since.

In fact the original music package was also the best, it was way better turn anything on the domestic news channels, but never made sense to me why the music was so much more enhanced for BBC World.


I have always felt that maybe David Lowe was requested to have a more conservative approach for network bulletins (and, to some degree, News 24).
Nowadays everything sound practically the same which is a pity.
harshy and Roger Darthwell gave kudos
JO
johnnyboy Founding member
Yeah the 10 second countdown was special, it had that gravitas that we were watching the international news channel from the BBC, and imho hasn’t been surpassed since.

In fact the original music package was also the best, it was way better turn anything on the domestic news channels, but never made sense to me why the music was so much more enhanced for BBC World.


I have always felt that maybe David Lowe was requested to have a more conservative approach for network bulletins (and, to some degree, News 24).
Nowadays everything sound practically the same which is a pity.


I think the writing was on the wall in 2007 when the finishing drum roll on the main theme became much louder.

It's much more in your face and, although I like it musically, I'm not sure it works for me on news bulletins.
MA
Matrix
Yeah the 10 second countdown was special, it had that gravitas that we were watching the international news channel from the BBC, and imho hasn’t been surpassed since.

In fact the original music package was also the best, it was way better turn anything on the domestic news channels, but never made sense to me why the music was so much more enhanced for BBC World.


I have always felt that maybe David Lowe was requested to have a more conservative approach for network bulletins (and, to some degree, News 24).
Nowadays everything sound practically the same which is a pity.


I think the writing was on the wall in 2007 when the finishing drum roll on the main theme became much louder.

It's much more in your face and, although I like it musically, I'm not sure it works for me on news bulletins.


Almost like they're going for coherence in their (non) visual language...
DT
DTV
Yeah the 10 second countdown was special, it had that gravitas that we were watching the international news channel from the BBC, and imho hasn’t been surpassed since.

In fact the original music package was also the best, it was way better turn anything on the domestic news channels, but never made sense to me why the music was so much more enhanced for BBC World.


I have always felt that maybe David Lowe was requested to have a more conservative approach for network bulletins (and, to some degree, News 24).
Nowadays everything sound practically the same which is a pity.


While the network, NC and World packages are much more similar than they used to be, that makes sense given that the services increasingly overlap which they didn't during the cream and red era. Back then the only overlaps were Breakfast and overnights, other than that they were three different services, so different music wouldn't sound that odd. Today, with a lot of simulcasting, it would be rather odd if every hour of the BBC News channel was introduced with different beds and titles.

Also, Lowe arguably gets to write more varied BBC News themes today than he did 20 years ago - his themes for World News programmes and things such as elections, while retaining the distinctive features of his BBC News music, are far more different than the 1999/2000 packages.

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