Friday Five: Questions & Answers With Tim Jones

Mel’s Note: Chuck fan and music teacher Al recently sent questions from his fifth graders to Chuck composer Tim Jones. Here are five of the best, with an intro from Al.

Not only is Tim Jones one of the most highly respected composers in the TV industry, he is a man that knows the importance of Arts education.  Tim graciously took time out of his ridiculously busy schedule to again answer some probing and perceptive questions from my fifth grade music classes.  Last year, Tim was only scoring Chuck, a big enough job in itself.  This year he assumed the role of score composer for Fox’s Human Target as well.  You’ll see where he got the time to answer these questions below!

  1. FIFTH GRADE:    We know you were musical, but did you play sports when you were a kid?
    TJ:    Yes. I loved baseball – I played little league baseball. I also went out and ran a 10k once without training when I was about 14 and I finished it – I just didn’t stop! It’s nice to be young… I was a pole vaulter in high school – 11 and a half feet was as high as I ever went.
  2. FIFTH GRADE:    How do you score Chuck and Human Target differently?
    TJ:    Hmm… For me, Human Target was much more like an updated Miami Vice – it was a really cool cop show in the 1980s.  Human Target in general tends to be more serious. It’s a lot more like a heist film – it has what I call a breezy sound, you know? It’s cool and the characters are often doing things that are illegal.  Chuck is more archetypal, I think – it has more clear cut themes of good and evil.  Human Target also has very little brass – it has a lot more of a rock and roll ethos to it. Chuck has a much broader instrumentation.
  3. FIFTH GRADE:    Have you met the actors you write for and do their personalities influence you?
    TJ:    I’ve only met the actors on Chuck – and absolutely. Although sometimes I find myself being drawn in and write for the characters and not the actors. I’m surprised by the difference between characters and actors… even though I know them as people, I write the score based on the emotions they bring to the scene as actors.
  4. FIFTH GRADE:    Do your kids play instruments and what kind are they?
    TJ:    My daughter Tess plays the piano, and is always singing and making up her own songs. My son Finley doesn’t play an instrument yet, but he’ll often be singing a theme I’ve written before it’s even written out – he has an amazingly good ear… he must have gotten that from his mother!
  5. FIFTH GRADE:    What’s the weirdest thing that ever happened at work (musically)?
    TJ:    We were recording my accordion one day for Chuck, and one of the keys broke inside. So we had to open it up and melt the beeswax with a soldering iron so we could put it back together and finish recording!

Bonus question

FIFTH GRADE:    Are these questions interfering with your job?
TJ:    No – I’m eating lunch!

For those who keep inquiring, unfortunately Tim doesn’t have a release date for the score CD yet. We’ll post the date as soon as it’s announced.

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  1. What a nice interview, how wonderful.

    I wonder if what has been referred to as “Charah’s Theme” is available/will be released?


  2. How can you not love a guy with his musical chops who is willing to take time out of his lunch to answer question from the youth of America? 🙂

    • You might likr to know that we have a picture of Tim on the wall of my music room that I took last summer, right next to Beethoven. Tim’s music gets requested more often then Ludwig’s!

  3. Tim – I have gone to your site to listen to the music you’ve posted, including some of my “Chuck” faves. Conspicuously absent is that beautiful piano piece used during Chuck and Sarah heart-to-hearts (the “Sarah, do you love me?” scene in “the Other Guy” comes quickly to mind). What are the chances of hearing that on your site? – Bob

    • Thanks, Doc! You’ve phrased the question much more eloquently than I. Hope someone out there has an answer!! *Hug


      • “Charah’s Theme”, I like that! I didn’t realise by your title that we were both referring to the same piece. I admire both your taste in music and your utility with song titles!

    • Keep an eye out on my facebook page for streaming pieces that don’t always make it to the website – I’ll update that more regularly! Glad you love the piano piece – I’ll try to get that up in the next couple of weeks on facebook. (

      • Thanks for the heads-up, Tim. I’ll be on the lookout. Thanks for all the cool stuff you do.

  4. “For those who keep inquiring, unfortunately Tim doesn’t have a release date for the score CD yet. We’ll post the date as soon as it’s announced”

    Please keep us updated it on the score, I’d REALLY want to have it. Tim’s music in the show is great.

    • Want to help move things along? Go to Tim’s facebook page and leave a message asking about how you get the cd. Then email WB and ask how you buy the Chuck Score Soundtrack CD. They’re not dumb. If enough of us do this, they’ll get the message!

      • And what’s the link please?

      • Go to That’s the WB online store and request how to pre-order the CHUCK Score Soundtrack CD.

  5. My favourite piece of Chuck music is the piece that was first introduced during Delorian for the con. It has a sort of a 60’s sound to it with the upbeat tempo and use of organ. They haven’t used it much since, I think the only other time in S2 was during Suburbs when Chuck and Sarah basically con Morgan into thinking they had big plans for Valentines day.

    Also loved in Santa Clause how he did the the Chuck theme Nutcracker Suite style, and when in Crown Vic he introduced the Chuck theme – James Bond style as Chuck and Sarah are entering Lon Kirk’s Casino night, which they have used a lot since. I thought both were really clever.

    • The fisrt time I heard the tune for the Delorean/General Lee scenes was in the Ferris Beuler’s Day Off movie.

  6. Tim you are truly a great asset of the show–I hope you realize how much your work is appreciated.


    I just LOVE the music in Chuck! It’s so fitting and moving and just plain awesome! Keep it up Tim!!! 😀