Vinyl Dynamite #37: Charlie's Angels

If you're a 70s-phile like myself, then you are doubtless a fan of the many glorious TV theme songs of the decade.  Television themes were serious business back then - a hard thing to comprehend today when most shows don't even have a theme to speak of (thanks, Seinfeld).  Sure, they're fun for nostalgic reasons, but I think the fact that many of us still love the themes to WKRP, Taxi, and The Mary Tyler Moore Show demonstrates that they were actually pretty good songs in their own right.

Indeed, some quality musicians and singers were involved in those old TV themes: Donny Hathaway on "Maude", Jack Jones on "The Love Boat" and Quincy Jones on "Sanford & Son", for instance.  And sometimes they actually wound up selling well and would be covered on countless EZ Listening and disco albums.  Ever heard the Sammy Davis, Jr. version of The Mary Tyler Moore theme song? A classic for the ages.

Anyway, here's a few examples of some versions of the Charlie's Angels theme....

Charlie's Angels Theme by Donna Lynton

This one is my favorite - a disco version WITH LYRICS.  You read that right.  You didn't know the Charlie's Angels Theme had lyrics did you?   But unlike the M*A*S*H* theme which has depressing wrist slitting lyrics ("Suicide Is Painless"), this is guaranteed to bring a smile to your face.

Charlie's Angels Theme by The Ventures

I love how The Ventures try to give this tune a little pizzazz with some funky guitar shenanigans.

Charlie's Angels Them by Henry Mancini and His Orchestra

Normally, I don't care too much for Mancini covers.  They're usually tight and flawless, but not exactly anything to write home about.  This time he nails it.  Funky and disco-tastic - perhaps better than the original...

Charlie's Angels Theme, Original

And finally, we have a Mel Tillis song.  It has nothing whatsoever to do with the TV show, but it bears its namesake, so I thought I'd include it.  Lyrics: "Charlie acted so unwise, walking out on paradise. And I'm holding Charlie's angel tonight.  I'm in heaven while I'm holding her tight...."

Charlie's Angel by Mel Tillis


  1. Damn it. I was really hoping to hear Mel Tillis stutter through a country-disco version of the theme song.

  2. Mel doesn't stutter when he sings!

    I miss theme music and even the music throughout the show. We were watching Rockford Files and my oldest son kept going on about how great the music was throughout the show. Now they just take songs that already done and fit them in, not that that's always bad, but it is different.

  3. I remember being excited to watch Charlies Angles each week when I was a kid. The suspense used to kill me when one of them would be undercover and sneak into the bad guys office and take pictures of secret files.

    PS- Bosley and Mr. Cunningham from Happy Days used to remind me of each other.

    1. Don't care for Maude, but I have MTM and Love Boat themes on my running playlist.


  5. I mentioned this post over on my blog. I featured the opening credits to The Name of the Game and talked about trying to find a full length "hit" version of the TV shows theme song. The only one I can find available is by Dickie Goodman. Yes, "Mr. Jaws" Dickie Goodman. Believe it or not, it is actually very good.

  6. I also loved the theme from Fish and Barney Miller