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Biography

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Overview (5)

Date of Birth 3 July 1931Chicago, Illinois, USA
Date of Death 18 April 2012Los Angeles, California, USA
Birth NameRobert Oliver Ragland
Nickname Bob
Height 5' 8" (1.73 m)

Mini Bio (2)

Probably best know for composing music for cult and B-movies during the sixties, seventies, eighties and present. Ragland, Robert O. was not a very popular music composer, but friend Lalo Schifrin enjoyed most of his music and both worked together. Ragland was originally from Chicago, Illionis. He had spent time advertising in Hollywood to gamble into his musical talents. Playing the piano at age five, Ragland set a tone for music interest. During his school years he organized dance bands and graduated from Northwestern University. Ragland got a job with working for the Dorsey Borthers Orchestra. He later attained degrees and several Awards for musical talents in the American Conservatory in Chicago and the Academy of Music in Vienna. Ragland was overwhelmed to write music. During the sixties and seventies Ragland had composed music for Touch of Satan (1970). and also Cindy and Donna (1970). He began making music for several cult and B-Movies like The Thing with Two Heads (1972), Seven Alone (1974), Abby (1974), Return to Macon County (1975), Sharks Treasure (1975), Grizzly (1976), Pony Express Rider (1976), Massion of Doomed (1977) The Glove (1978) and Jaguar Lives! (1979). Ragland, oddly, was then known as one of the best music composers. With odd music like that Ragland had just begun and was becoming one of the most successful music composers in Hollywood. Ragland started other musical scores with Lalo Schifrin and orchestrator Jack Hayes. He started score for Project Kill (1980), Q: The Winged Serpent (1982), Brainwaves (1982), Hysterical (1983), 10 to Midnight (1983), Evils of the Night (1985), Deep Space (1987) and Messenger of Death (1988). In a bigger career of the nineties he did The Fifth Monkey (1990), No Place to Hide (1992), The Raffle (1994), The Fear (1995), Evil Obession (1995), Warhead (1996), Orion's Key (1996), Top of the World (1997) and Motel Blue (1997). These great films have marked Robert O. Ragland a short but successful career as a Hollywood music composer. Ragland scored Wing Commander (1999), but it was rejected. Ragland then also performed music in Broadway plays and other music concerts. Ragland retired in 1999 at age 69.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Anonymous

Robert O. Ragland is one of the most prolific music composers in the film industry. Originally from Chicago, Ragland gave up a comfortable executive position in advertising to gamble on his musical talents in Hollywood. Since that decision made in 1968, Ragland has made his impressive presence known in the film community by scoring over 50 motion pictures in a span of nearly thirty years. He first became interested in music by playing the piano at the age of five. During his school years, Ragland both performed and organized dance bands. After graduating from Northwestern University, he served as a musical arranger for the Dorsey Brothers Orchestra and also attained degrees and awards in music from the American Conservatory of Music in Chicago and attended the Academy of Music in Vienna. Upon the death of Tommy Dorsey, one of the leads in the Dorsey Brothers Orchestra, Ragland offically left the music business for advertising, but his urge to write music for motion pictures overwhelmed him and he came out to California in 1969 and began composing music for such motion pictures as "Seven Alone", "Abby", "Return to Macon County", "Pony Express Rider" "Sharks Treasure", "Project: Kill", "Grizzly", "Mansion of Doom", "Jaguar Lives", "Q: The Winged Serpent", "Messenger of Death", "10 to Midnight", "The Fear", "Orion's Key", "Top of the World" and "Motel Blue". Although Ragland retired in 1999, he still occasionally writes music for films.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Blythe379@cs.com

Spouse (1)

Martha Montgomery (1972 - 9 May 2005) (her death)

Trade Mark (1)

Uses low sounding insturments in his films. Usually with a lot of his B-Movie and Cult films.

Trivia (12)

Works with music orchestrator Jack Hayes.
He retired in 1999.
Used low sounding instruments for Grizzly (1976).
Used the twelve of the lowest sounding instruments in Grizzly (1976).
Was mostly used in most of the 'disaster' films in the 70s.
He and other music composer and friend Lalo Schifrin worked as partners through the seventies. They took turns when they both composed music for director William Girdler. Girdler had used them in Abby (1974), Grizzly (1976), Day of the Animals (1977), The Manitou (1978) and Project Kill (1980).
He disliked a few parts in his score for Q (1982).
He played the piano at age five.
Most of his music for films is usually performed and conducted at The National Philharmonic Orchestra of London.
Stepfather of Oscar nominated film composers David Newman and Thomas Newman.
Married Martha Montgomery in the early 1972, after the death of her husband, famous Oscar winning film composer, Alfred Newman.
Member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences [Music Branch].

Personal Quotes (2)

The film composer has two main pressures... Time and Quality. Usually it is necessary to compose high quality music in a very short time and in most of my cases usually two weeks because money has already been budgeted.
(The scoring of Grizzly) "Because of the recent popularity of 'disaster' films, I was faced with the problem of creating a unique, but dramatically supportive score for Grizzly."

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