Enjoy Celebrity Radio’s Simon May Life Story Interview Eastenders Theme Composer….
Simon May is one of the most successful and prolific theme tune writers in the world!
Most famously he penned the Eastenders theme 30 years ago in 2015.
From Eldorado, Howards’ Way, Holiday to the Olympics theme – he’s done it all!
He’s also had chart success with ‘Always There’ with Marti Webb & even worked on international hit Ami Stewarts ‘Knock On Wood’.
Simon’s new album and autobiography ‘Duff Duff’ will be out in July. You can contact Simon May here
Enjoy an Exclusive interview with Alex Belfield and Simon May from Feb 2015:
Born in Devizes and a pupil of Dauntsey’s School, May won a choral scholarship to Cambridge University, graduating with a degree in modern languages.
While teaching languages and music at Kingston Grammar School, he co-wrote a musical named Smike with a colleague, history teacher Clive Barnett and songwriting partner, Roger Holman.
Here’s Simon at the St Pancras Hotel playing and explaining the creation of Eastenders….
Following the publicity Smike attracted, May was contacted by the BBC, who televised the play in 1973, starring Beryl Reid and Andrew Keir. It also featured DJ Neil Fox, a pupil at Kingston Grammar, as one of the schoolboys.
The show has subsequently been staged many times by youth drama groups.
Here’s Simon playing Hawards’ Way at the St Pancras Hotel:
While working at ATV, he was asked to compose some music for Crossroads. Stephanie de Sykes got to number 2 in the UK Singles Chart in 1974 with the subsequent “Born With a Smile on My Face”, which was used within a storyline on the show.
Kate Robbins performed another of May’s songs for Crossroads: “More Than in Love,” which was co-written by Barry Leng and got to number 2 in 1981.
May himself performed “The Summer of My Life”, which charting at number seven in the UK chart in October 1976.
The song originally appeared in Crossroads, in a scene between Meg and Hugh. It was one of the best selling singles of the year, and was one of few songs to spend three weeks in a row at number seven in the UK Singles Chart.
His follow-up single, “We’ll Gather Lilacs – All My Loving (Medley)”, flopped, reaching number 49 in May 1977.
In 1986 he released an album called Simon’s Way, which included his themes to EastEnders and Howards’ Way, which peaked at #59 in the UK Albums Chart.
In the same year his ‘Holiday Suite’ theme was used for the BBC Programme ‘Holiday’, and was released as a single. The theme has also been used by Video 125 for three of its railway drivers-eye-view productions.
He worked on his first feature film in 1988 – The Dawning. Music from the film, together with various other TV themes (including The Olympic Track and People like You) was released in 1989 on the Simon May Orchestra album Themes.
He co-produced Amii Stewart’s “Knock on Wood”, which reached number one in the US.
Interview recorded by Alex Belfield for Celebrity Radio 17th Feb 2015.