Legendary Composer John Barry Dies at 77

Film Music Magazine • January 31, 2011

Legendary composer John Barry, best known for his scores for “Born Free,” “Midnight Cowboy,” “Dances with Wolves,” and 11 films in the James Bond series, has died of a heart attack at age 77.

In his early years, he achieved fame as the leader of the “John Barry Seven” and his arrangement of Monty Norman’s James Bond theme led to him scoring 11 films in the James Bond series. His IMDB listing for his composing work since 1960 lists over 110 titles.

Barry’s attitude towards scoring film was well known and respected by many throughout the industry. Sir Richard Attenborough once said of Barry, “He’s never satisfied with what he does. Every day he wakes up and believes that into his mind and soul is going to come some magical arrangement of notes that he’s going to ultimately either entrance you with in a concert hall or cinema. It’s because he thinks there’s still a peak to climb that he’s a great film music composer.”

Fellow James Bond composer David Arnold said, “I am profoundly saddened by the news but profoundly thankful for everything he did for music and for me personally.”

Barry won five Oscars for his music, which had a unique, lush sound heavily featuring strings and emotional, passionate orchestral composition.

For a complete list of Barry’s works, see:


By chris owens on January 31st, 2011 at 1:31 am

I have loved Mr Barry’s work since OHMSS; wonderful melodies. I use the adjective with care on this occasion.

Thank you, JB I miss you.

By Max Tofone on January 31st, 2011 at 4:38 am

I am very saddened by this news… I have admired Maestro John Barry for his wonderful music, composing philosophy and as a human being.

Thank you for all the emotions you gave me through your music.

RIP Maestro JB


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