Multiple award-winning British composer John Barry, the man behind the music in 11 James Bond films, has passed away aged 77.
Alongside the soundtracks to the 007 films, Barry was also the creative mind behind: a number of TV themes; compositions to movies such as Born Free, Dances With Wolves and Out Of Africa; and even the lead in an early 60s’ guitar band.
However, it is likely that he will be remembered for his lengthy association with the world’s most famous spy, with his scores effortlessly switching from action to seduction in seconds.
Announcing the news, the Independent described the wide-ranging skill set possessed by the composer:
“Barry artfully brought together wildly different sounds – big band, guitar riffs, lush string flourishes, jazz and Latin beats – and he provided the musical settings for such title songs as Goldfinger, Diamonds Are Forever and You Only Live Twice,” the article added.
He was also considered to be at the forefront of innovation with his use of a synthesiser on various film and TV projects.
In total, Barry went on to write the music for 11 Bond films, including Goldfinger, Diamonds Are Forever, Moonraker, Thunderball, From Russia with Love, You Only Live Twice, The Man with the Golden Gun, A View to a Kill, The Living Daylights, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service and Octopussy
Throughout his career, which spanned almost 50 years, Barry picked up a number of accolades recognising his contribution to music.
Indeed, his first Oscars came in 1967 for his Born Free score and its title theme. More Academy Awards followed for the soundtracks he wrote for The Lion in Winter, Out of Africa and Dances with Wolves.
Barry also won four Grammys, a Bafta for The Lion in Winter and a Golden Globe for Out of Africa. In 1999, he was presented with an OBE for services to music and he received a Bafta Fellowship in 2005.
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