The soundtrack is a mix of rock and roll and rhythm and blues with the original score created by film composer Elmer Bernstein, who had been a Landis family friend since John Landis was a child. Bernstein was easily persuaded to score the film, but was not sure what to make of it. Similar to his preferring dramatic actors for the comedy, Landis asked Bernstein to score it as though it were serious. He adapted the "Faber College Theme" from the Academic Festival Overture by Brahms, and said that the film opened yet another door in his diverse career, to scoring comedies.
The soundtrack was released as a vinyl album in 1978, and then as a CD in 1998. In the late 2000s, the very first song on the soundtrack, the "Faber College Theme", came to prominence due to its purported resemblance to the Bosnian national anthem.
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