The best known of his pieces today is "The Edge", which was sampled by Dr. Dre as the intro and riff to the track "The Next Episode", "M.I.A" by Missin' Linx, and "No Regrets" by Masta Ace. McCallum did not sing on these records, as many television stars of the 1960s did when offered recording contracts. As a classically trained musician, he conceived a blend of oboe, English horn, and strings with guitar and drums, and presented instrumental interpretations of hits of the day. The official arranger on the albums was H.
B. Barnum. However, McCallum conducted, and contributed several original compositions of his own, over the course of four LPs. The first two, Music...A Part of Me and Music...A Bit More of Me, have been issued together on CD on the Zonophone label.
On Open Channel D, McCallum did sing on the first four tracks, "Communication", "House on Breckenridge Lane", "In The Garden, Under The Tree" (the theme song from the movie Three Bites of the Apple), and "My Carousel". The music tracks are the same as the Zonophone CD. This CD was released on the Rev-Ola label. The single release of "Communication" reached No.
32 in the UK Singles Chart in April 1966. In recent years, McCallum has gained renewed international recognition and popularity for his role as NCIS medical examiner Dr. Donald "Ducky" Mallard in the American television series NCIS. The multi-talented David McCallum has racked up many accomplishments over the years, including acting in movies, theater, and TV, plus issuing his own music albums (McCallum is proficient at several instruments). Born David Keith McCallum on September 19, 1933, in Glasgow, Scotland, McCallum was surrounded by music starting at an early age as his father was a violinist (who played for the London Philharmonic) and his mother a cellist. After giving cello a try, McCallum became entranced by such classic writers as Chaucer, Kipling, Dickens, and Shakespeare, which inspired McCallum to give acting a try as a teenager.
Before he could explore acting fully, McCallum enlisted in the Royal West African Frontier Force on the African Gold Coast in the early '50s, which inadvertently helped McCallum prepare for what would become his signature acting role — as blond Russian agent Ilya Kuryakin in TV's The Man from U.N.C.L.E. — which McCallum played from 1964 through 1968. During the late '60s, McCallum issued several albums that have since become novelty cult items among collectors (à la William Shatner's The Transformed Man) — 1966's Music: A Part of Me, 1968's Music: A Bit More of Me, and 1969's Music: It's Happening Now! — which mixed renditions of then-current hits (the Beatles' "Yesterday," the Rolling Stones' "Satisfaction," etc.) along with McCallum originals. McCallum continues to act in both movies and TV, and retains a sizeable fan base, as proven by the fanzine the McCallum Observer, which is issued quarterly by superfan Lynda Mendoza Read more on Last.fm.
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