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Sunday, December 02, 2007

Astronaut Chooses Quincy Jones' 1969 Recording as Wake-Up Music

When the Space Shuttle Atlantis launches from Cape Canaveral, Florida on Thursday, Dec. 6 on its mission to deliver the European Space Agency's Columbus laboratory to the International Space Station, Astronaut Leland Melvin will have in tow a copy of Quincy Jones' 1969 Grammy Award winning recording "Walking in Space," which he will use as his wake-up music during the mission.

Says Melvin, "Quincy Jones is someone who I have a great deal of respect and admiration for and I couldn't think of a more appropriate selection to use as my wake-up music."

Melvin's duties on the Shuttle Atlantis mission will be to support three space walks using the robotic arm and install the Columbus laboratory from Atlantis' payload bay to its permanent home on the International Space Station.

Says Jones, "I am truly honored that Mr. Melvin has chosen one of my pieces of work for this momentous occasion. I was inspired to record the 'Walking in Space' album in 1969 after Buzz Aldrin told me that he had played my arrangement of Frank Sinatra's 'Fly Me To The Moon' during his space flight to the moon, so to have it come full circle like this is quite remarkable and very humbling."

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