Michael Giacchino’s Star Trek Soundtrack Nominated For Grammy | TrekMovie.com
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Michael Giacchino’s Star Trek Soundtrack Nominated For Grammy December 3, 2009

by Anthony Pascale , Filed under: Music,Star Trek (2009 film) , trackback

Composer Michael Giacchino has a lot to celebrate as last night he was nominated for four Grammy Awards by The Recording Academy, including one for his Star Trek soundtrack. The other three nominations were for his work on the Disney/Pixar movie Up. This is the first time a Star Trek production has been nominated for a Grammy. See below for details.


Giacchino’s nominations
Here are the three categories Giacchino was nominated in

Best Score Soundtrack Album For Motion Picture, Television Or Other Visual Media

Best Instrumental Composition

Best Instrumental Arrangement

Winners in 109 Grammy categories, voted on by members of the Recording Academy, will be announced Jan. 31. CBS will telecast the ceremony from L.A.’s Staples Center.

Full list of nominees at grammy.com

Giacchino has been nominated twice before for Grammy’s, winning in in 2008 for his Ratatouille score. The composer has also won an ASCAP award, and an Emmy. Earlier this year he was nominated by the World Soundtrack Academy for Composer of the year, but lost out to Alexandre Desplat (Curious Case of Benjamin Button).  

Giacchino with director JJ Abrams

Giacchino Live!
Here is a video of Michael Giacchino conducting “Enterprising Young Men” in Spain over the Summer at V Festival Internacional de Música de Cine “Ciudad de Úbeda”.

Giacchino’s Star Trek Soundtrack is available on CD and MP3 download at Amazon. You can also visit the Michael Giacchino Store at Amazon.


1. Jerry - December 3, 2009

Congradulations. Up was a funny and emotional film that the music complimented beautifully. Star Trek was a great action/ character film with fresh music and yet subtle nods to the original.

2. Luke Sutton ("The Tenth Doctor") - December 3, 2009

Yay! Go Michael.

3. CarlG - December 3, 2009

Oh, yeah. First, the Grammys, tomorrow… the world! Mwa-ha-ha! :)

4. Captain Otter - December 3, 2009

Much desereved.

5. somethoughts - December 3, 2009

I hope he wins, congrats on the nomination and good luck!

6. Markus - December 3, 2009

Up was the worst film of the year. another Pixar crap fest

7. Lore - December 3, 2009

Has a Trek movie’s soundtrack ever gotten this nomination before?

8. Stephen Whelan - December 3, 2009

Well done Michael…absolutely wonderful…totally deserved…roll on Oscars

9. VZX - December 3, 2009

He should win for Up.

10. Shadowcat - December 3, 2009

Congratulations to Michael Giacchino on his nomination. I purchased the Star Trek XI soundtrack and have listened to it over and over.

11. AJ - December 3, 2009

I don’t think Trek soundtracks have every been nominated for a Grammy before. Emmies for TV themes, and Oscars for film soundtracks, I always thought.

I’m mixed on MG’s “Trek09″ soundtrack, though I hope he brings one home for the team in any case. The man is prolific and many-faceted, for sure.

12. Dan - December 3, 2009

The more I watch the movie, the more I love the score. Very well done as far as I’m concerned, congrats!

13. Buzz Cagney - December 3, 2009

Best of luck to him. I thought the music for Trek really delivered when it most needed to. It truly helped ratchet-up the emotion.

14. Spock - December 3, 2009

I just wish there were more tracks from the soundtrack available. The Vulcan theme was awesome, a nice call back to the original series. Enterprising Young Men was another great theme from the movie as well.

15. Happy Russia - December 3, 2009

Still no Goldsmith. I’ll wait until he *wins* an Oscar–then I’ll start drooling over the score.

16. LCDR Arch - December 3, 2009

Great soundtrack! Only STTMP is better.

17. Dr. Image - December 3, 2009

#7- Yes- TMP. ActuallyAnd Goldsmith should have WON.
Congrats to MG- he rightfully deserves it!

18. Professor Squidly - December 3, 2009

I am glad Giacchino got the grammy nom, but Jerry Goldsmith deserves a post-mortem lifetime achievement award.

If there is any justice, he will get one!

19. davidfuchs - December 3, 2009

I still maintain that Giacchino’s score is good, but it’s simply not in the same class as Horner and Goldsmith–the over-repetition of the main theme and rather standard bad-guy music are what killed much of it for me. That said, “Enterprising Young Men” is a pretty good cue and it still fits well with the movie–it just doesn’t hold its own as a soundtrack.

20. doug_skywalker - December 3, 2009

I think his nominations are well deserved, though i wish more music from Star Trek made it onto the disc.

otherwise, i loved the score and liked how it took the Casino Royale/Batman Begins approach and waited until the end to play the theme which had to be ‘earned’ in a way. but that’s just me…

21. Capt. Dunsel - December 3, 2009

Way to go! It really is a good score. “UP” was also really good, totally different from Star Trek which nicely shows off the composers range. If MG wins it will most likely be for UP. Either way I’d be happy for the talented film scorer.

22. THX-1138 - December 3, 2009

The Trek score was really, really good. But the score for UP was something special. It was his better work in my opinion.

23. Drij - December 3, 2009

Not the best soundtrack in a trek film.

24. Charla a long time STAR TREK FAN - December 3, 2009

#1 Very well said- I agree wholeheartedly!

#6 Your wrong- period.

Congratulations Michael! Loved the scores for both movies- your very talented!

25. ML31 - December 3, 2009

It took some time, but I have warmed up to the Trek score. I particularly like what was essentially Spock’s theme.
I will say that I think using a voice chorus is getting kinda overused these days. But that’s not too big a deal for me.

Still cold on the new 1701 look. The sweeping neck and sliced off secondary hull still bother me when I see it.

Oh well. Gotta take the good with the bad.

26. Trekluver - December 3, 2009


Jerry Goldsmith is dead and yes his trek soundtracks where the best! But I do think Michal Giachinno’s soundtrack pays homage to all past trek composers so for that I believe he diserves the award! His UP soundtrack was also very well done so if he wins that one instead I still won’t get too upset about it. Star Trek is awesome but it’s music allways needs to be more awesome!

27. Jason - December 3, 2009

I was disappointed with Up (a first for Pixar). But his score on that film was pretty good. Same story goes for his Land of the Lost score, the movie sucked, but the score (and little else, maybe the animated titles at the end) were the only good things to come out of it.

As for the Star Trek score, I feel it’s probably one of the best in the series. Definitely better than the Goldsmith scores of the last few TNG films – don’t get me wrong, Goldsmith was great in the earlier films he scored, but the Insurrection and Nemesis scores weren’t all that special.

Now, hopefully this means Mr. Giacchino will get his much deserved Oscar this year, for either film. He should have got one for The Incredibles, and I feel the only reason they didn’t give it to him was because it was his first big film score, then he was nominated for Ratatouille, but didn’t win unfortunately, but now seems to be his year.

28. Anthony Pascale - December 3, 2009

Actually this is the first Star Trek production nominated for a grammy, i added that to the intro

Goldsmith was nomimated for the 1980 Grammys but it was for his other 1979 movie, Alien

29. OneBuckFilms - December 3, 2009

Nice one Mr. Giacchino !!! Congrats !!!

30. sebimeyer - December 3, 2009

The other day I watched Star Trek, then later that day Up and the pilot of Lost.

It wasn’t until Giacchino’s named popped up for the second time on Lost that it hit me that he had scored everything I had been watching that day. The mind blowing thing about him isn’t that he is so good, it is that he is so good at so much.

That said, his Trek score is ok. I was hoping for something more down the line of his The Incredibles score, which was more like a classic Bond score than any Bonds movie since the 60s. But the extras on the DVD explain quite well that he thought the themes had to be earned, so the Courage theme doesn’t appear till the very end.

God, I hope he gets to score at least one more Trek movie. Now that he can play with all the toys in the arsenal it could be truly epic. And to think that the Klingons might be up for the next one… One of many reasons to become excited about the next movie.

31. Will_H - December 3, 2009

Honestly I find it pretty bad that this is the first Star Trek movie to get a Grammy nomination. Nothing against this movie and soundtrack, but looking back I’d say all of Goldsmith and Horner’s movies deserved it more. I think this movie had a solid soundtrack and the title was maybe even exceptional but I don’t think it is up to par with the Star Trek works of the other two. Just my opinion. Still hope it wins.

32. Kent Butabi - December 3, 2009

More exposure for Trek; however, I thought the soundtrack was way too repetative – the same cues over and over again.

33. Kent Butabi - December 3, 2009

More exposure for Trek; however, I thought the soundtrack was way too repetative – the same cues over and over again.

34. Star Trek:Voyeur - December 3, 2009

A re-sounding accomplishment (pun intended).

Congrats’ Michael.

35. Star Trek Movie Score Congrats! - December 3, 2009

I’m happy for the Grammy nomination but the fact that he has two nominations does not bode well for him. As you all know, usually dual nominations in the same category have a way of cancelling each other out. Perhaps this will not happen.

Its too bad Goldsmith’s score did not win its Grammy or Oscar nomination either but who is to say that the Academy has ever gotten things right?

36. THX-1138 - December 3, 2009

Posts #32 and 33 make me laugh in their delightful irony.

37. AJ - December 3, 2009


Goldsmith was nominated for an Oscar for TMP, and I think he got an Emmy nomination for VOY’s opening theme.

38. Ran - December 3, 2009

One of Giacchino’s weakest efforts that got buried beneath sound effects and explosions.

39. Greg - December 3, 2009

Hearing the musical score when Kirk and McCoy see the Enterprise from the shuttle (‘Enterprising Young Men’) gives me goosebumps every time! Congrats!

40. Dom - December 3, 2009

Talented guy. Apparently he had to keep the score for ST09 very ‘reined in’ as it was a prequel (of sorts!)

Looking forward to his next Trek score! Love his work on many other movies and TV shows!

Good luck to him!

41. paustin - December 3, 2009

his work is fantastic and varied. The first 10 minutes of UP are selent but for his score…and it makes me cry everytime. Many of his LOST scores have the same effect.

42. JMD aka speed racer - December 3, 2009

I usually do not say much here, but I have to give props to the Mike the man! He did a good score. I was expecting something more outstanding as far the movie soundtrack goes. However, I beleive that the music fit the tone of this film perfectly. It did not stick out to carry the pace of the film like Horner did in “Kahn”, or Goldsmith in” The Motion Picture”. When I see the film it blends with the visuals and the audio effects. I love it there. When I listen the CD it is pleasant, but it does not resonate as much.It is O.K. because it compliments the film. I hope the next time he does Trek (and he should) it will be memorable, jubilant, fun, and catchy on its own .

43. Lt. Liz - December 3, 2009

Congrats to Mike! The score was fantastic; I still get kinda emotional whenever I listen to Labour of Love, and Enterprising Young Men just gets my chest tight. When music does that to me, I NEED it.

44. Christine - December 3, 2009

I’d love to see him win for either “Star Trek” or “Up”, but I must say, I loved the score of “Harry Potter”. So any of those would be fabulous.

45. Daoud - December 3, 2009

Giacchino finale!

Here’s hoping he gets it for Trek, in a sense taking it ‘for the team’. There’s no doubt that Trek 2012 needs to be sent to him, because he shows great promise. That his couple primary themes still echo in our heads is great. He’s earned the right now to utilize Courage’s original themes, and Goldsmith’s grand TMP music. I can’t wait to hear Giacchino’s take on the TMP Klingon themes….

I just hope he makes the Orci-like effort to watch the first season of TOS, and pick up some of the original series background music.

What musically made TNG, DS9, VOY and ENT suck was the constant more-of-the-same non-orchestral background music. Who remembers any of it, compared to the background music in TOS?

46. sean - December 3, 2009

I give great credit to Giacchino. While I love many of Trek’s past composers like Horner and Goldsmith, Giacchino really manages something unique every single time. I’ll bet his next Trek score sounds completely different from this one. Goldsmith, on the other hand, had a tendency to recycle his TMP score for every subsequent involvement, and Horner managed to recycle his Trek work into multiple films.

One of Trek’s best composers was Ron Jones, and he got sacked for making his music too interesting! Go figure.

47. Haynes1701 - December 3, 2009

Ron Jones?! I have to disagree with that – unless you like elevator background noise. Same with Dennis McCarthy. Save for the Goldsmith opening fanfare, Next Gen era was a low point for Star Trek music IMO.

48. Magic_Al - December 3, 2009

I think Giacchino’s score supports the movie very well. That’s what it’s supposed to do. However I feel the fact this was nominated for a Grammy, and none of the other Star Trek music of the past 40 years has been, reinforces the belief that popularity and “success” as much as quality influences awards nominations. The 2009 movie is seen as the first mainstream or not-for-nerds incarnation of Star Trek. Fine. Goldsmith’s TMP score is better. Certainly, from the standpoint of listening to music, what the Grammys are about, it stands on its own better than most movie scores, thanks to “2001”-like pacing of TMP that gave Goldsmith long sections of quiet to fill.

Regarding Goldsmith’s later Trek work, it was his Star Trek V score rather than TMP that I noticed being repeated. His TMP “Enterprise” theme was logically carried forward, since it was used as TNG’s theme on TV, but to hear other themes from TFF, developed for that story and those characters, being shoehorned into films such as Nemesis, that was pushing it.

49. somethoughts - December 3, 2009

I’ve listened to both his work in UP and Star Trek and Star Trek wins hands down. Enterprising Young Men, Labor of Love and Hella Bar Talk is awesome, can listen to that over and over, Go get em MG!

50. Shunnabunich - December 3, 2009

It’s an insult to Goldsmith, Horner, et al. that Giacchino’s third-rate effort for Trek is being compared to their work in this comment thread, let alone being nominated for anything. What’s even more frustrating is that the guy seems to be capable of writing really awesome stuff — he just decided not to for this particular movie.

51. ryanhuyton - December 3, 2009

Michael Giaccino’s soundtrack fo “Star Trek” was solid but not great. “Enterprising Young Men’ and the “End Credits” were outstanding, with the rest sounding too similar to music from the “Star Wars” prequels at times. James Horner and Jerry Goldsmith set the bar for “Star Trek’ movie sountracks, specifically the themes from “The Motion Picture”, “The Wrath of Khan” and “First Contact”. We will have to see the next movie before comparing Giaccino to Horner and Golsmith, assuming that he does the sequel, barring some unforeseen happenings.
However, the score for this film is unquestionably better than that of either “Nemisis’ or “Insurrection’, both scores done by Jerry Goldsmith.

52. Jeff Bond - December 3, 2009

I think if people were able to hear the whole score away from the film they’d be a lot more impressed. The album is not a great presentation of the score. Some scores are collections of set pieces and they function perfectly well on shorter albums; other scores are more like landscapes and you need to hear the whole work to appreciate the architecture, flow and proportion. I think Giacchino’s Trek is one of those.

Similarly, anyone who can dismiss Ron Jones’ work as ‘elevator music’ has simply not listened to enough Ron Jones.

53. captain_neill - December 3, 2009

Its a good score but it’s not a great score. Enterprising Young Men and the End Credits were brilliant but to me its not great, then again film scores are not as good these days as they use to be.

To me it works for the film but it is no where near as good as Jerry Goldsmith and James Horner’s scores for the films.

A lot of the music in the TV series was excellent as well and is far from ‘elevator’ music. I have loads of them on CD.

54. ML - December 4, 2009

I really enjoy Giacchino’s scores, so it’s too bad he is competing against himself for the Best Score Grammy. A split vote may mean he wins nothing.

55. somethoughts - December 4, 2009

The greatest score imo was Star Trek the Undiscovered Country, steady and dark and filled with suspense. Cliff Eidelman was outstanding, Horner and Goldsmith was good also.

56. somethoughts - December 4, 2009

BTW that video is not Enterprising Young Men, it is a snippet from the end credits score.

57. Captain Rickover - December 4, 2009

Michael’s Star Trek soundtrack was better as the ones from TVH (Rosenman), GEN (McCarthy), TUC (Eidelman), NEM and INS (both from Goldsmith). But it can hold up against the works from James Horner for TWOK and TSFS and Goldsmith’s superior works for TMP, TFF and FC.

Despite that, I hope Michael will win!

58. Vanny - December 4, 2009

Congratulations, I absolutely loved the new Star Trek Score…

59. Cafe 5 - December 4, 2009

Its most unfortunate that modern movies choose sound over a music score that is the true emotion underpinning for a visual medium that films are. Giacchino is a very good composer but his score for Trek09 is just functional with in the confines of the film. He has done much better scores not only for films but video games as well. His scores for “Secret Weapons Over Normandy” and his score for the game based on “The Lost World Jurassic Park” had far more emotional impact. I’m happy to see a score from Star Trek be nominated but it could have been far more epic in nature had JJ not reined him in stunting his creativity. (Listen to the score Ron Jones wrote for the video game “Starfleet Academy” and feel what real emotional power music has.)

60. Captain Scokirk - December 4, 2009

I love MG’s work- I was hooked from the Incredibles, inspired by Ratatouille and had my heart broken by UP, so the bar was unbelivably high for Star Trek 2009, and I must admit that I was somewhat dissapointed. Repeated viewings have made me appreciate it more, I swear I can here TOSesque fight music during the vulcan drill scene-bits of crazy horn ala Amok Time brilliantly referenced in the Cable Guy. MG obviously can do a bitchen 60’s-esque score both Incredibles and Ratatouille proove that, but here he was restrained for I suppose understandable reasons wanting the heroes to earn the fanfare, etc. If anything the whole tone is a bit melancholy which is I suppose thematically appropriate. I have high hopes for the sequel.

I suspect my dissatisfaction is because of a combination of several things well observed here, the sound effects overpower this movie at times and also in several places you here Revenge of the Sith like musical motiffs- this combined with Benjamin Burtt’s nonetheless excellent if too loud sound efx combined with views of Coruscant-err… I mean “San Francisco” and you get major Star Wars Prequelitis. While I overall enjoyed and liked and saw twice and purchased this film like the faithful sheep trekkie that I am I nonetheless am here on the Internet registering my protests.

Obviously we are in the middle of the “Star Wars” not Star Trek generation-and while there is probably no Star Wars without Star Trek and 2001 to pave the way the touchstone for a lot of these folks is the original Star Wars movies. So you get a film where the cerebral Trek is fused with the action adventure sensibilities of Star Wars. The result is a bridge that looks not so much like an apple store as it is accused of but more like admiral akbar’s bridge complete with porthole viewscreens. You get cadet uniforms borrowed from a star destroyer, you get our valiant heroes coming out of hyper space into a meteor shower after Alderaan is blown up—oops I mean out of warp drive into a tattered fleet in orbit of Vulcan before it gets blown up. A Kirk modeled not on William Shatner(which would be parody) but on Harrison Ford(which is “cool”) But since George Lucas guards his cash cow (cinematically anyways) and doesnt let anyone else direct, here was a chance to make a sci-fi movie that would make modern moviegoers feel like the filmmakers did as children back in 1977-1983.

Which Is okay I guess bitter sarcasm aside afterall Star Wars was a reimaginning of Buck Rogers, Flash Gordon and Samarai movies. The young cannabalize the old. I’d bet most of the filmmakers were inspired by Star Wars to go into the film bussiness to begin with. Nick Meyer wasnt making a Trek film he was making Horatio Horblower- you do what you love, and sometimes the hybrid is something special or atleast entertaining.

As for Trek Music in general in this trekkie’s opinion:
Goldsmith’s Trek Theme combined with Courage’s Fanfare IS STAR TREK music, it sums up everything all the series perfectly, Horner is a close second but in the end looses by a point or two for being two literal- close your eyes and you see sailing ships and cannons (not neccesarily the Enterprise and the Reliant). Goldsmith came close to committing the same mistake but Robert Wise pulled him back and art happened. Trek V is good Goldsmith and Trek music but not sublime like TMP. Goldsmith did good Goldsmith for TNG but the only thing that makes you leave the theater humming from any of those scores is the end credits. FC’s mistake was to lead with the “love theme from Star Trek: First Contact”, Ilia’s love theme works because it is countered by the Enterprise. But FC has the love theme and “spooky monster/ haunted house” music.

Lucas is right to start each SW film with the same music, it puts you in the mood right away-Trek had a similiar aproach with a fanfare that sounded vaguely similiar even if different compositions (until Trek V just lifted TMP)TUC tried to go moody and sort of works becaus it apes Holst’s The Planets so well. Trek 2009 has a bit of moody and a dash of fanfare- certainly more satisfying than any TNG score ever had. Jones and early McCarthy did descent heroic Trek music before being ordered to reduce the music to farting violins and of course Jones being exiled. So in the end MG did solid work certainly in a league with Goldsmith and Horner, and I have high if more realistic hopes for his followup.

61. Captain Rickover - December 4, 2009

# 57
Uh-oh…. I meant Star Trek (09) soundtrack CAN’T hold up against the sountracks from Horner and Goldsmith.

62. Jon - December 4, 2009

Some Trek scores have been better than others; this is true about almost everything in life. As to the best Trek scores–that would have to be awarded to the first two movies–Star Trek: The Motion Picture and Star Trek II: The Wrath of Kahn. While the new Trek movie has a great score, it pales in comparison to the sheer sweeping majestical feeling of Goldsmith’s score in the first movie and Horner’s strident, unique and riveting battle score.

63. CarlG - December 4, 2009

@47: Boy, are you wrong, pal:


64. The Guardian - December 4, 2009

How did he get nominated? Did the Grammy’s come up with “Most Outlandish, Over-blown Soundtrack in a Poor Excuse for a Film” category?

65. Ravenwood - December 4, 2009

I find Giacchino’s main theme to have way more of the “Trek-feeling-travel-to-the-stars” vibe than Horner’s.

My favourite Star Trek themes that feel Star Trek are Courage’s, Goldsmith’s and Giacchino’s.

66. Professor Squidly - December 4, 2009

Ron Jones was the best composer to work on TNG — and one of the best composers Star Trek ever had overall.

67. CarlG - December 4, 2009

@65: True, but Horner had that “Hornblower-in-space” vibe that fit Star Trek II perfectly.

68. Red Skirt - December 5, 2009

#52. – “I think if people were able to hear the whole score away from the film they’d be a lot more impressed.”

Have you heard it this way? What a treat if so. I love film music, particularly the subtle nuances under a scene that rarely make it into a soundtrack album.

If what you say is true then Paramount should release such a soundtrack for academy consideration only.

69. Fubamushu - December 5, 2009

For me, the score for Star Trek ’09 is uninspired and unremarkable. It reminds of a, “What if they mated?” skit using the LOST score and Danny Elfman’s original Batman soundtrack. Occasionally the score tries to spice things up by adding a sprinkling of music from an old John Wayne western into the mix. For me, none of this works.

70. ryanhuyton - December 5, 2009

As I said before, we’ll have to see the sequel before we can fairly judge Michael Giaccono fairly. Whatever we might think of the music he composed for this film,(as well as the film itself) it is good to see that “Star Trek” is relevent again not just with the diehards, but the critics as well.

71. Bill Lutz - December 7, 2009

It wasn’t that good nor does it stand out in any shape or form as memorable Trek music.
Somebody is greasing plams to get this dreck accepted as Trek, if you ask me……

72. Z Remorca - December 9, 2009

if ever Star Trek 09 gets its own TV show, the theme music should go along the lines of this AWESOME score. :D

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