Best Soundtrack Composers

My favorite composers, and their masterpieces that I prefer.
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1.
Bernard Herrmann
Music Department, Citizen Kane
The man behind the low woodwinds that open Citizen Kane, the shrieking violins of Psycho, and the plaintive saxophone of Taxi Driver was one of the most original and distinctive composers ever to work in film. He started early, winning a composition prize at the age of 13 and founding his own orchestra at the age of 20...
“ Vertigo,
The Ghost and Mrs Muir,
North by northwest,
Citizen Kane,
Psycho,
Marnie,
Taxi driver,
The wrong man,
The Trouble with Harry ” - oxyboldine
 
2.
“ Mulholland drive,
Lost Highway,
Blue Velvet,
Twin Peaks fire walk with me,
A straight story,
Twin Peaks (TV) ” - oxyboldine
 
3.
Ennio Morricone
A classmate of director Sergio Leone with whom he would form one of the great director/composer partnerships (right up there with Eisenstein & Prokofiev, Hitchcock & Herrmann, Fellini & Rota), Ennio Morricone studied at Rome's Santa Cecilia Conservatory, where he specialized in trumpet. His first film scores were relatively undistinguished...
“ Once upon a time in America,
Once upon a time in the West,
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly,
The Untouchables,
For a few dollars more ” - oxyboldine
 
4.
“ Le Mépris,
La Femme d'à côté,
La nuit Américaine,
Les Deux Anglaises et le Continent,
Tirez sur le pianiste ” - oxyboldine
 
5.
Danny Elfman
Music Department, Corpse Bride
As Danny Elfman was growing up in the Los Angeles area, he was largely unaware of his talent for composing. It wasn't until the early 1970s that Danny and his older brother Richard Elfman started a musical troupe while in Paris; the group "Mystic Knights of Oingo-Boingo" was created for Richard's directorial debut...
“ Sleepy Hollow,
Big fish,
Edward scissorhands,
Batman,
Mission : impossible ” - oxyboldine
 
6.
Miklós Rózsa
Music Department, Ben-Hur
'Miklos Rozsa' studied the violin from the age of five. In 1926, he began studying at the Leipzig Conservatory. In 1929, his violin concerto was performed there. While living in Paris from 1931, Rozsa had his 'Variations on a Hungarian Peasant Song' and his 'Symphony and Serenade for Small Orchestra' performed...
“ Moonfleet,
The asphalt jungle,
Double indemnity,
Spellbound,
Providence ” - oxyboldine
 
7.
Vangelis
Soundtrack, Collateral
Vangelis is a composer and performer who works almost exclusively with electronic instruments. He is probably most well known for his Chariots of Fire and Blade Runner soundtracks or for the tracks used in the Cosmos television series. He has been involved in many musical collaborations, most famously with Jon Anderson.
“ Blade Runner ” - oxyboldine
 
8.
Nino Rota
Composer, The Godfather
Born in Milan in 1911 into a family of musicians, Nino Rota was first a student of Orefice and Pizzetti. Then, still a child, he moved to Rome where he completed his studies at the Conservatory of Santa Cecilia in 1929 with Alfredo Casella. In the meantime, he had become an 'enfant prodige', famous both as a composer and as an orchestra conductor...
“ Il Gattopardo,
The Godfather,
Fellini Roma,
La dolce vita ” - oxyboldine
 
9.
“ The Bridges of Madison county,
Unforgiven,
A perfect world,
Absolute power ” - oxyboldine
 
10.
Clint Eastwood
Perhaps the icon of macho movie stars, and a living legend, Clint Eastwood has become a standard in international cinema. Born May 31, 1930 in San Francisco, the elder of two children in a middle-class family, Eastwood finished high school at the comparatively late age of nineteen and worked odd jobs over a period of several years before enrolling at Los Angeles City College...
“ Mystic river,
Flags of our fathers,
Changeling,
Million dollar baby ” - oxyboldine
 
11.
“ A History of violence,
Gangs of New York,
The Lord of the Rings,
The Fly ” - oxyboldine
 
12.
Pino Donaggio
Composer, Carrie
Born in Burano (Venice) in 1941, Pino Donaggio studied violin at the Conservatory of Venice and Milan. After a period of adolescent performer of classical music with the Solisti Veneti and the Soloists of Milan, in 1959 he began to devote himself to the pop music that soon led to international success...
“ Body Double,
Dressed to Kill,
Blow Out,
Raising Cain ” - oxyboldine
 
13.
“ Hana-bi,
Princess Mononoke,
Spirited away ” - oxyboldine
 
14.
John Carpenter
Writer, Halloween
John Howard Carpenter was born in Carthage, New York, to mother Milton Jean (Carter) and father Howard Ralph Carpenter. His family moved to Bowling Green, Kentucky, where his father, a professor, was head of the music department at Western Kentucky University. He attended Western Kentucky University and then USC film school in Los Angeles...
“ Halloween,
In the Mouth of Madness,
The Thing ” - oxyboldine
 
15.
John Williams
As one of the best known, awarded, and financially successful composers in US history, John Williams is as easy to recall as John Philip Sousa, Aaron Copland or Leonard Bernstein, illustrating why he is "America's composer" time and again. With a massive list of awards that includes over 41 Oscar nominations (five wins)...
“ E.T. The Extra-terrestrial,
Jurassic Park,
Raiders of the Lost Ark ” - oxyboldine
 
16.
Franz Waxman
Music Department, Peyton Place
Franz Waxman (Wachsmann) pursued his dream of a career in music despite his family's misgivings. He worked for several years as a bank teller and paid for piano, harmony and composition lessons with his salary. He later moved to Berlin, where he continued his study and progress as a musician. He was able to support himself by playing and arranging for a popular German jazz band...
“ Rear Window,
Sunset blvd.,
Fury ” - oxyboldine
 
17.
Adolph Deutsch
London-born piano child prodigy Adolph Deutsch trained at the Royal Academy of Music from the age of eight and composed his first piece, a waltz for piano, entitled "La Charmeuse" two years later. He moved to the U.S. in 1910 and got his first job working for a publishing house, during which time he...
“ The Apartment,
Some like it hot,
The Maltese falcon ” - oxyboldine
 
18.
Max Steiner
Composer, Casablanca
Austrian composer who achieved legendary status as the creator of hundreds of classic American film scores. As a child he was astonishingly musically gifted, composing complex works as a teenager and completing the course of study at Vienna's Hochschule fuer Musik und Darstellende Kunst in only one year...
“ The Searchers,
The Big sleep,
Pursued ” - oxyboldine
 
19.
Frank Skinner
Music Department, The Great Ziegfeld
The author of the textbook "F.Skinner's Simplified Method for Modern Arranging" (published 1934) began his musical career as a pianist in vaudeville alongside his brother Carl. He then became a noted arranger for New York dance orchestras in the 1930's and was briefly active in the field of music publishing...
“ Imitation of life,
All that heaven allows,
The Tarnished angels ” - oxyboldine
 
20.
Charles Chaplin
Writer, Modern Times
Charles Chaplin was an English comic actor, filmmaker, and composer who rose to fame in the silent era. Chaplin became a worldwide icon through his screen persona "the Tramp" and is considered one of the most important figures in the history of the film industry. His career spanned more than 75 years...
“ City lights,
The gold rush,
Modern times ” - oxyboldine
 
21.
Roy Webb
Composer, Notorious
Trained in classical music at Columbia University, Webb worked on Broadway by the time he was in his mid-20's, not only composing incidental music, but co-writing original plays with his older brother, the director Kenneth S. Webb. By 1923, he worked as conductor/arranger on hit shows like "Music Box Revue" and "Stepping Stones"...
“ Out of the past,
Notorious,
Cat people ” - oxyboldine
 
22.
Michel Legrand
Michel Legrand is a three times Academy Award-winning French composer, conductor and pianist who composed over 200 film and television scores as well as recorded over a hundred albums of jazz, popular and classical music. He was born on February 24, 1932, in Becon-les-Bruyeres, in the Paris suburbs...
“ Les demoiselles de Rochefort,
Les parapluies de Cherbourg ” - oxyboldine
 
23.
Mark Snow
Composer, The X-Files
Mark Snow became a good friend with Michael Kamen while they were studying music at New York's Art and Music High School. After graduation, they became roommates at Juilliard (an elite music school). After studying at Juilliard, he became very fond of pop music. He, Michael Kamen and 3 others formed the New York Rock'n'Roll ensemble...
“ Les Herbes Folles,
Coeurs ” - oxyboldine
 
24.
Wendy Carlos
Composer, The Shining
Wendy Carlos, one of the great innovators in synthesized and electronic music, was born as Walter Carlos in Rhode Island on November 14, 1939. She underwent a sex-change operation in 1972, details of which she revealed during a surprise Playboy interview in 1979. Walter's last credited release is "Sonic Seasonings" (1972)...
“ The Shining,
Clockword orange ” - oxyboldine
 
25.
Elmer Bernstein
Music Department, Cape Fear
Elmer Bernstein was educated at the Walden School and New York University. He served in the US Army Air Corps in World War II. A prolific and respected film music composer, he was a protégé of Aaron Copland, who studied music with Roger Sessions and Stefan Wolpe. Bernstein worked in various artistic endeavors...
“ Some came running,
The Age of innocence ” - oxyboldine
 
26.
Dimitri Tiomkin
Music Department, It's a Wonderful Life
Dimitri Tiomkin was a Russian Jewish composer who emigrated to America and became one of the most distinguished and best-loved music writers of Hollywood. He won a hallowed place in the pantheon of the most successful and productive composers in American film history, earning himself four Oscars and sixteen Academy Awards nominations...
“ Dial M for murder
Rio Bravo ” - oxyboldine
 
27.
“ La Cérémonie,
Bellamy ” - oxyboldine
 
28.
“ L'avventura ” - oxyboldine
 
29.
Alfred Newman
Music Department, The King and I
“ You only live once ” - oxyboldine
 
30.
“ Night of the hunter ” - oxyboldine
 
31.
“ Les 400 coups ” - oxyboldine
 
32.
“ Blow-up ” - oxyboldine
 
33.
“ Pierrot le fou ” - oxyboldine
 
34.
Mark Isham
Music Department, Crash
From his days as one of the pioneering icons of electronic music to his current status as a world-renowned legendary film composer, Mark Isham continues to be one of the most prolific and provocative artists on the scene. His gift for creating unforgettable melodies and his love of fresh, innovative sonic palettes have earned Isham many awards including a Grammy...
“ The Black Dahlia ” - oxyboldine
 
35.
“ A bout de souffle ” - oxyboldine
 
36.
“ Bram Stocker's Dracula ” - oxyboldine
 
37.
Henry Mancini
Born in Cleveland, Ohio, but brought up in Pennsylvania, where he played the flute in a local band, as a youth, before sending some arrangements to Benny Goodman. Goodman offered him a job and, after serving in WWII, he joined the rearranged Glenn Miller band. In 1952, he was given a two-week assignment...
“ Touch of Evil ” - oxyboldine
 
38.
Peter Gabriel
Soundtrack, WALL·E
Peter Gabriel was educated at Charterhouse School, Surrey, England. He was the lead singer of leading progressive rock band Genesis from its inception until he left in 1975 for a successful solo career as a singer-songwriter, soundtrack composer and innovator in visual presentation of music...
“ The Last Temptation of Christ ” - oxyboldine
 
39.
Leonard Bernstein
Soundtrack, Moonrise Kingdom
Renowned composer ("West Side Story", "Candide", "On The Town"), conductor, arranger, pianist, educator, author, TV/radio host, educated at the Boston Latin School and Harvard University (BA) with Walter Piston. Edward Burlingame Hill and A. Tillman Merritt. He studied piano with Helen Coates, Heinrich Gebhard and Isabelle Vengerova...
“ West Side Story ” - oxyboldine