Star Trek: The Original Series never used lyrics for its theme song
The theme song for Star Trek: The Original Series was designed to create a sense of being among the stars. Created by Alexander Courage, the theme, which was created in one day, plays while the Enterprise flies toward and past the camera. When Courage was interviewed in 2000 for Emmy TV Legends, he said that the song “Beyond the Blue Horizon” inspired him to write the song we all know so well. And that “whoosh” noise we hear? Courage vocalized that himsef. (It’s an excellent interview!)
But there was something Alexander Courage didn’t write, but they provided Gene Roddenberry with a co-writer’s credit and a steady income for years to come. The lyrics for the song. Most of us have never heard them because they weren’t recorded for the series. Roddenberry admitted that he had to get money somewhere since he wasn’t going to get it out of the profits of Star Trek.
The lyrics wouldn’t have added anything to the theme song for Star Trek: The Original Series
Courage was very unhappy with what he considered Roddenberry’s unethical (though legal since Courage had signed a contract allowing Roddenbery to write the lyrics) behaviour since the Star Trek creator now received half of the composer royalties for the theme song. He didn’t feel that Roddenberry’s lyrics added anything to the value of the music and that he’d simply written them for half of the royalties.
"BeyondThe rim of the star-lightMy loveIs wand’ring in star-flightI knowHe’ll find in star-clustered reachesLove,Strange love a star woman teaches.I knowHis journey ends neverHis star trekWill go on forever.But tell himWhile he wanders his starry seaRemember, remember me."
It’s true that the lyrics wouldn’t have added anything to the theme song and may have even proven to be a distraction. We all saw how well it went when the Star Trek: Enterprise producers chose to go with a song with vocals for its theme song, although that may have simply been the song itself.
Either way, the lyrics for The Original Series are out there but never used. And though some or all of the details surrounding their creation are up for debate, Gene Roddenberry did get a co-writer’s credit that he shared with Courage.