Were the Rescuers Masters Really Destroyed?


Melton1974

New Member
I have been hearing rumors around the internet that there will never be a soundtrack release for The Rescuers because the master tapes were destroyed in the flooding of New Orleans. Apparently they were being kept in the basement of Buddy Bakers house. Then I read somewhere else online that it would not be true because Disney would have kept the master tapes in the "vaults". So I am wondering If any folks here had heard any more info about this. Or even if Randy could confirm if these rumors are true and they were indeed lost or do masters exist.

Thanks!
 

eyore

DLRP explorer
Premium Member
Playlist Author
It was already released on vinyl in 1977 so there must still be a master for that surely?
Why would Buddy have the masters and not Disney as he didn't write the score but just worked for them?
It would be very lax of Disney to allow an ex-employee to have such important stuff (although he may have had copies).
 

The Trout

Member
It'd be sort of odd for Buddy to have the masters, but it's not unheard of. While it's a slightly different situation, Ian Anderson (leader of Jethro Tull) had the master tapes for "Aqualung" buried in his garage for over thirty years, instead of it being stored at the record company's vault.

But even if the "Rescuers" master tapes were lost, there are always options. For starters, as Eyore said, Disney must at least have the mixdown master edited for the LP release. It should still sound just fine if put out on CD, though I suspect it's woefully incomplete from a score perspective. But there are usually multiple versions of "the master tape," especially for films produced in the 70s and later. You'd have the session tapes (the raw, uncut, flubs-and-all, multi-track tapes of the recording), the 2-channel mixdown tape (obviously a generation removed from the multi-track session tapes, this is the score before being dropped into the movie), the LP master tape (generally taken from the 2-channel mixdown), and probably some other dubs if they're being careful and want backups.

As a 70s score, I'd be VERY surprised if there weren't multiple sources they could go through for a Rescuers release. This isn't like Fantasia or Alice, where all the original master tapes for the scores were lost because Disney simply didn't have a proper archiving system yet.
 
Hey Melton, Eyore, and Trout,

Actually it was Artie Butler that scored “The Rescuers” and not Buddy Baker.

I also don’t recall a soundtrack album to the film ever being released, at least not produced by Walt Disney Records (or Disneyland Records at the time) in the US. Some score may have appeared on the Storyteller Album, but no real soundtrack to speak of.

If material was truly lost, it must have been Mr. Butler’s personal copies. The actual recordings should still be in the library. I don’t have definitive proof (well, not yet anyway), but it is highly unlikely that ‘the only’ sources are gone – particularly from that era.

Hope that helps,
Randy
 

eyore

DLRP explorer
Premium Member
Playlist Author
Hey Melton, Eyore, and Trout,

Actually it was Artie Butler that scored “The Rescuers” and not Buddy Baker.

I also don’t recall a soundtrack album to the film ever being released, at least not produced by Walt Disney Records (or Disneyland Records at the time) in the US. Some score may have appeared on the Storyteller Album, but no real soundtrack to speak of.

If material was truly lost, it must have been Mr. Butler’s personal copies. The actual recordings should still be in the library. I don’t have definitive proof (well, not yet anyway), but it is highly unlikely that ‘the only’ sources are gone – particularly from that era.

Hope that helps,
Randy

Thanks.
I did wonder why Buddy Baker would have masters of something he didn't do (then again, some people do act as a storehouse for other people's stuff sometimes).
Yes, I was referring to the storyteller album which had a couple of songs on it, not a soundtrack album.
I haven't seen the DVD for a while so I forget how much music was in there (ie enough to make a full album).
I'm sure you will keep us informed on the whereabouts of the masters. ;)
 

DexterRiley

New Member
I contacted Artie Butler a while back (way before Katrina) and he wrote back a spare email that his masters were destroyed in a basement flood. He didn't mention anything about Louisiana to me though, I guess, it's a possibility. I had hoped that the Legacy Collection would ultimately encompass some of the ignored soundtracks like "The Rescuers", "Sword in the Stone", "Winnie the Pooh", etc. and Randy has mentioned to me that he's waiting on a decision from above about the fate of the Legacy Collection but it looks kind of unlikely from the outside.
 

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