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TV Theme Songs: Eight Is Enough

"Just sit right back and you'll hear a tale" of a time when television shows began with awesome TV Theme Songs. "Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name" and sometimes you want to go back to when TV Theme songs were special. "Here's a story... of a lovely" time when TV Theme Songs served to identify, distinguish and set the stage for the television program that followed. "You take the good, take the bad, take them both and there you have" what unfortunately has become a lost artform. "Believe it or not", sadly it seems no effort or pride is taken in the TV Theme Song ever since Seinfeld proved a short synth-bass riff could be used instead. “Schlemiel! Schlimazel! Hasenpfeffer Incorporated!” This regular feature may not "make all our dreams come true", but it will remember some of the best TV Theme Songs from years past (with a focus on the '80s decade). "Come aboard, we're expecting you."

This time we will cover the theme song for Eight Is Enough aptly titled "Eight Is Enough". "There’s a magic in the early morning we’ve found. When the sunrise smiles on everything around. It’s a portrait of the happiness that we feel and always will. For eight is enough to fill our lives with love." Eight Is Enough premiered in March of 1977 and ran for five seasons and 112 episodes just crossing over into the '80s with it coming to an end in May of 1981. There were also two made-for-television reunion movies which originally aired in 1987 and 1989 capitalizing on the show's popularity. Eight Is Enough was modeled on the life of real life syndicated newspaper columnist Tom Braden, an actual parent with eight children of his own, who wrote a book by the same title. The character Tom Bradford (last name changed for the show) was played by Dick Van Patten.

For the show's first two seasons, an upbeat instrumental piece was used as the show's opening theme. Beginning with the show's third season, it was replaced by a slowed-down much more memorable vocal theme titled "Eight Is Enough," which was actually sung by one of the show's stars Grant Goodeve. Goodeve played the oldest son "David Bradford". Interesting story about Goodeve is that he was not the original choice to play David. In the pilot, David was actually played by Mark Hamill. Hamill requested to get out of his five-year contract to do the show when he was offered a part in a little film called Star Wars. His request was granted and the role of David was given to Grant Goodeve who was a relative unknown prior to this role. The song had music by Lee Holdridge and lyrics by Molly-Ann Leikin, and was first heard in a longer arrangement on the last episode of the second season before becoming the show's official theme song starting the following season. Holdridge, a composer who scored a number of TV series and movies including Mr. Mom and Splash, would later co-write another tremendous television theme song in 1985 with Moonlighting and win two Emmy's in 1988 for his work on the television series Beauty and the Beast. Here are the opening credits for Eight Is Enough featuring the theme song performed by Grant Goodeve...

This is the only theme song I remember for the series. I either forgot about or blocked out that there had been a generic instrumental theme at the very start, but I think it was a wise decision to replace it with this new song with vocals and it is pretty cool that one of the members of the cast was able to sing it. "Though we spend our days like bright and shiny new dimes. If we’re ever puzzled by the changing times, there’s a plate of homemade wishes on the kitchen window sill. And eight is enough to fill our lives with love."

Hope you enjoyed tuning in for another "episode" of TV Theme Songs!


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