A great many developments in the video gaming world have arisen since the mid-1990’s, among them being the idea that a game’s soundtrack might be something that could be released independently. Successfully, even. Epic Games included a couple of Jazz songs in their 20th Anniversary Soundtrack Compilation thingy, and Alexander Brandon once gifted Lori Central with the JJ2 soundtrack (still in module format), but overall, despite its universally beloved music, the Jazz Jackrabbit series has never seen a commercial soundtrack release.

Until today. As of, uh, fifteen minutes before I posted this. (Yeah, I was hovering over their website waiting for them to release this.)

The Game Music Bundle organization traditionally releases soundtracks from Indie games, but this time around chose to focus on “retro” games, in particular the 90’s era that we all know and presumably love. To this end, for the ludicrously low price of $1, you can buy the complete soundtracks of both Jazz 1 and Jazz 2, plus four more games, including Tyrian (also from our friends at Epic). Pay $10, and thirteen more albums get added to your order, including the soundtrack of Jazz 3D! There are other games in the list that I’d be happy to rave about, but they’re not really relevant to a Jazz Jackrabbit news website. ;)

I don’t know too much about the Game Music Bundle folks’ business model, though not for want of trying… they simply don’t talk about themselves very much. But there’s every indication that this is a 100% legal venture. They’ve done this many times before (though, again, with indie games instead of retro ones), and they make specific mention of doing work to untangle the copyrights of the JJ1 and JJ2 soundtracks.

Obviously I can’t make you buy this. But I can strongly suggest you do so. (And if there’s any sort of comment field — I haven’t checked yet — do remember to mention it was Jazz that brought you there!) Rumors have been circulating about either the JJ1 or JJ2 soundtrack being included in this bundle ever since they teased an icon of a turtle shell, and especially after a tweet mentioning two brothers and one of them being “SPASTIC.” (They messed up, though, by saying there was no time travel involved.) This — all three PC games — is a bigger deal than I think anyone could possibly have predicted, however.

EDIT1:
Here’s a blog post about the process of creating this bundle.
This seems to be the best place to contact them with questions or concerns.
EDIT2:
We’ve been discovered! “Josh from the GMB” has shown up in the comments section. Everyone say hi!

- Violet CLM


Comments

Stijn on 23 May 2013 at 14:48

I guess this is a way of legally acquiring the Jazz Jackrabbit 1 soundtrack, which I don’t think was released in any official way before. But apart from that… the Jazz Jackrabbit 2 and 3 soundtracks are widely available for free already, with permission by Alexander Brandon, so it seems weird to spend money on it for those.

I mean, it’s cool that Jazz Jackrabbit is getting some recognition obviously, but apart from that this seems kind of… redundant.

djazz on 23 May 2013 at 14:50

Awesome! Just bought the level 2 one. Downloading as we speak :)

Slaz on 23 May 2013 at 15:33

Nice! I’d say these days any kind of publicity for Jazz is a good thing, and this happens to be very positive publicity!

Just bought one for myself and another giftable one.

Love & Thunder on 23 May 2013 at 16:37

Stijn, what about Jazz 1?
And, have the soundtracks for all three Jazz games ever been available in .FLAC format before?
So, it is actually pretty good. Although, the Tyrian Soundtrack has been available in FLAC format for about a year or two, but the rest is pretty awesome. :) And, as people seem to agree, the publicity is nice.

cooba on 23 May 2013 at 18:03

Why would FLAC matter? We all know the originals, changing the format isn’t going to make them sound any better.

DoubleGJ on 23 May 2013 at 18:40

I’m happy that it happened, but they did mess up a good deal

Jazz Boss Tune 1 is by Robert A. Allen and Bryan Rudge
Hippie Heaven is a collaboration between Alexander Brandon and Sean Hiler

these are both said so in the comments to the files I got off Lori Central

and as we all know Haunted Hare is NOT a secret boss ;)

DoubleGJ on 23 May 2013 at 18:41

oh yeah and the cover image is… pretty bad

PT32 on 23 May 2013 at 20:09

Who cares, really, if they messed up an attribution line here and there? I’m just glad they gave us something at ALL. Not counting the Jazz T-shirts, that’s already more consideration than Epic ever gave us.

Violet CLM on 23 May 2013 at 23:31

I can’t defend the idea of buying soundtracks because I don’t actually understand it myself. :) But if you already believe in it, then hey!

DoubleGJ: if you have a twitter account, they seem to pay pretty close attention to that and might be able to see your corrections. Other than that I haven’t been able to find any way of directly contacting them. EDIT: Wait, no, here we go.

soundofjw on 24 May 2013 at 00:18

Hey guys! Josh from the GMB here (waves)

Just wanted to let you guys know that we are listening, and are planning on providing an updated copy of this soundtrack with more accurate production via the original formats. ( Thanks to “Saga” from our Uservoice community for this info: http://bundledragon.uservoice.com/users/36560346-saga )

Our goal in providing this bundle is primarily to support the artists behind the music and distribute this awesome music to EVERYONE in an accessible format.

Thanks for your support so far everyone!

Slaz on 24 May 2013 at 00:53

Hi Josh! 8D (waves back)

ThunderPX on 24 May 2013 at 01:22

Weren’t there a lot more songs in the JJ3 soundtrack than the 12 songs listed here? At any rate, I’m definitely waiting until all the issues are sorted out before getting this.

Violet CLM on 24 May 2013 at 01:31

Yeah, JJ3 definitely has more tracks than are included in the bundle. I’m not sure what the deal is there.

Obi1mcd on 24 May 2013 at 02:31

How about that Village one near the end? It doesn’t seem to be on the JJ3 page here as far as I can tell.

PT32 on 24 May 2013 at 02:31

Hey, Josh! (Copies Slaz’s wave)

Love & Thunder on 24 May 2013 at 05:28

Josh(soundofjw), That’s nice to know. :)

And, Cooba, it makes a difference because most people convert most sound files that are in weird(Like .J2B, for example) formats into .MP3s, which have a set bitrate(Usually causing a drop in quality, although most of the time, it isn’t noticable), while .FLACs copy all the sound data fully. Although, I guess it’s a bit of a nit-pick, so ignore what I say about it if you don’t care.

DoubleGJ on 24 May 2013 at 12:47

Hello Josh!
If you intend on looking through these comments again, I have a few more suggestions that could help improve the soundtrack album. :>

First off, Jazz2Online user and my bandmate Dr. Eggman / Vehtor has made a J2B converter which could be useful for some songs that were not given to Lori Central by Alexander Brandon, and also there are some differences here between those and the J2B versions used in game (“chorus” lead in Medival Jam comes to mind). There’s also a J2B plugin for OpenMPT if I recall, but I don’t know the link and I don’t know how good it is.

Also, I noticed you included some unused tracks on the soundtrack. There are two more songs which can be found through the second post here and were made by Dan Grandpre, Brandon’s buddy from Straylight Productions (they did songs for Unreal and Deus Ex together) for Jazz2 levels that never came to be. [Useless side note: some melodies in Streetwize are taken straight from Dan Grandpre’s song “Dope for Your Mind”, it even says so in the file on Lori Central.]

Next, one of the songs on the Jazz3 soundtrack is not by Brandon. Haunted Terrero was made by Bass Productions, as said so in the file on Lori Central. The tutorial song is named Learning Curve, castle song is named Castle City, rocket song is named Skygazer. I also hope that Green Target and Jack of Spades will soon appear on your soundtrack, these songs are so awesome. :)

And lastly, any interest in the Jazz Jackrabbit for the Gameboy Advance? Years ago a rip in mp3 used to be somewhere on the Internet and I still have it, but it’s largely unavailable now. Knowing this game was made by a different developer I contacted the composer, Manfred Linzner, some time ago regarding the copyrights for the music (I have a remix album of this game in the works) and he responded saying that everything regarding Jazz Jackrabbit belongs to Epic, Jaleco and Game Titan have nothing to say on the matter. If there’s any plans for that, this makes things that much simpler, I guess.

I know that’s quite a lot of rambling, but it’s all with good intentions. Thanks for making it worth writing!

ThunderPX on 5 Jun 2013 at 13:38

With one day to go, none of the issues have been fixed and all the Apogee stuff has been replaced by indie crap I’ve never heard of. Won’t be getting this.

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