When it comes to television themes, I most like Barney Miller. It was written by two veterans of television: Jack Elliott and Allyn Ferguson. Like most of these, the music is simple. In this case: very simple. It’s basically just a vamp on a single (dominant-7) chord with that unrelenting four bar bass line. The whole line is then transposed up and then back down. After the instruments come in, the bass gets pretty funky, improvising around and beyond that line. There is also a bridge, of course.
It is also the case that the show Barney Miller is great. I always find it interesting to go back and watch shows that I liked when I was much younger. Often, they really don’t hold up that well. But Barney Miller is as good as anything on television now. It isn’t just that the humor still works. The show has a remarkable amount of humanity — both regarding the officers and the criminals. I’m sure I could get a thousand words out of discussing how it has a more advanced understanding of crime than most political pundits.
Anyway, here is the song in its three minute version: