Ry Cooder – Paris, Texas

Ry Cooder has done some of the best soundtracks in the last 20 years or so (I wouldn’t live without The Long Riders or the two-disc Music By Ry Cooder compilation, either)–most of them superior to the movies. (Sorry about that, Walter Hill–but it’s true.) His lonesome, steel-guitar music for Wim Wenders’ Paris, Texas is one of those cases where the movie and its music are equally great. I can’t imagine one without the other. Every time I hear Cooder’s opening theme, I see those wide western spaces and Travis (Harry Dean Stanton) wandering through them; and every time I see a still from the movie, I can hear Cooder’s music playing in my head. –Jim Emerson