Murder, She Wrote (1984–1996)
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Murder in Tempo 

Seth's benefit concert to save the woods near Cabot Cove is endangered when the lead singer is permanently silenced.


Kevin Corcoran


Peter S. Fischer (created by), Richard Levinson (created by) | 3 more credits »

On Disc

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Episode cast overview:
Angela Lansbury ... Jessica Fletcher
Sam Anderson ... Dan the Electrician
Keith Coulouris ... Tommy Vaughn
John D'Aquino ... Wylie Trey
Megan Gallivan ... Rachel Weldon
Amy Hathaway ... Udella Vaughn
Whip Hubley ... Cleve the Musician
Ernie Lively ... Hal Palmer
John Livingston ... Blue Maddox
Ron Masak ... Sheriff Mort Metzger (as Ron Másak)
Madlyn Rhue ... Jean O'Neill
Josh Taylor ... Jim Maddox
William Windom ... Dr. Seth Hazlitt
Louis Herthum ... Deputy Andy Broom
Lawrence Larsen ... Banker (as Lawrence Noel Larsen)


To save Cabot Wood from a developer, Seth has organized and financially backed a benefit concert. When the lead bad-boy singer turns up dead and his bandmate from Cabot Cove is arrested, the concert -- and the wood -- are finished as well unless Jessica can find the real killer. Written by mama.sylvia

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Mystery


TV-PG | See all certifications »






Release Date:

11 January 1996 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

To Bridge or Not To Bridge the Generational Divide
6 December 2009 | by WeatherVioletSee all my reviews

This episode marks the final appearance of Madlyn Rhue, who began her prolific acting career in film and, primarily, on television, circa 1958. Four of her five "MSW" performances are represented by her portraying the role of Cabot Cove Librarian Jean O'Neill.

Cabot Cove residents may seem unpredictable at times when new industries propose to develop their community. While they welcome progressive enterprises to consider employing local citizens, they, naturally, object to disturbing historic landmarks and natural beauty surrounding the community.

In this case, a developer plans to timber Cabot Cove Woods, a notion which disturbs Doctor Seth Hazlitt (William Windom), in particular, unless he comes up with a financial plan to rescue Cabot Cove Woods. Hal Palmer (Ernie Lively) plays a pivotal role, by arranging for the concert stage upon his nearby land.

With the blessing and assistance of Sheriff Mort Metzger (Ron Masak), Deputy Andy Broom (Louis Herthum), Librarian Jean O'Neill (Madlyn Rhue) and famous resident Jessica Fletcher (Angela Lansbury), Seth gathers business owners and youth alike to promote a benefit concert to aid in the campaign--providing that the musicians don't disagree with Seth's eardrums.

Hardware Store owner Dan the Electrician (Sam Anderson) and his daughter, Rachel Weldon (Megan Gallivan), as well as Jim Maddox (Josh Taylor) and his son, Blue Maddox (John Livingston), who likes Rachel, and vice versa, are on board to welcome musicians to perform the fund-raising event. Banker (Lawrence Larsen) also works closely with Seth for the arrangement, which to which Seth contributes as his pet project.

Blue participates with Tommy Vaughn (Keith Coulouris) and his wife, Eudela Vaughn (Amy Hathaway), who join forces with Wylie Trey (John D'Aquino) and Cleve the Musician (Whip Hubley) to practice on the outdoor stage, with speakers and amplifiers, to practice their upcoming performance.

Cabot Cove residents, in this case, continue to prove unpredictable, by seemingly getting along for the common cause even amid a touch of jealousy among the young men over the young women.

But if anything would be considered predictable in Cabot Cove, Maine, then that would have to be the fact that murder can't be very far around the corner, a factor reaching fruition when rifle shots spew across the stage when an amplifier is short-circuited, and a body is found in the aftermath.

Sheriff Metzger and Deputy Andy welcome Jessica's assistance to investigate this "Murder in Tempo," which Seth insists be solved in order to protect the natural inhabitant, as the protective fathers of the "young love" couple grow increasingly at odds with each other's family.

Will Jessica discover the perpetrator of the shotgun break-up in time to patch up differences for the show to go on, to save those trees?

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