Favourite Blaxploitation Composersby mister_gs | created - 01 Sep 2012 | updated - 11 months ago | Public
No ranking, just sorted First Name / Family Name. Except Donald Byrd, he is for sure a great musician (not only for film music). Personal favourites are hard to choose since there are so many superb Soul and Jazz musicians in this list. But when it comes to film music, I'd name Curtis Mayfield, Isaac Hayes, Luchi De Jesus, Melvin van Peebles and Quincy Jones. Thanks for checking, enjoy.
4. Alan Tew
Soundtrack | August: Osage County
British composer and arranger Alan Stanley Tew got his start in the 1950's as a pianist and arranger for The Len Turner Band in London, England. Tew later became the leader of his own orchestra which has performed dozens of soundtrack and library music albums. In addition, Alan has also ...
10. Barry White
Soundtrack | Baby Driver
Barry White first made his mark in the music business in the 1960s as a session musician, even serving for a spell as an A&R man for a small, independent Los Angeles record label. He first hit it big in 1973 with a series of albums and singles emphasizing lush orchestrations and elaborate ...
14. Brian Bennett
Music_department | Black Dynamite
Composer Brian Bennett is the three times winner of the Ivor Novello Award. Initially achieving fame as drummer with The Shadows, he has since forged a career as one of Britain's leading writers of music to picture.
Brian was born in London in 1940 and by the late 1950s was one of the most ...
Composer | Mean Johnny Barrows
Coleridge-Taylor Perkinson was born on June 14, 1932 in New York City, New York, USA. He is known for his work on Mean Johnny Barrows (1975), Thomasine & Bushrod (1974) and A Warm December (1973). He died on March 9, 2004 in Chicago, Illinois, USA.
18. Curtis Mayfield
Soundtrack | Armageddon
Rhythm and blues performer/songwriter credited with defining 1960's Chicago sound in hits like "It's All Right" and "Gypsy Woman." His style influenced other artists from pop to hip hop. Has been a quadriplegic ever since he was struck by lighting rig during outdoor concert in New York, 1990. ...
19. David Shire
Music_department | Zodiac
David Shire was born on July 3, 1937 in Buffalo, New York, USA as David Lee Shire. He is known for his work on Zodiac (2007), Short Circuit (1986) and Saturday Night Fever (1977). He has been married to Didi Conn since February 11, 1984. They have one child. He was previously married to Talia Shire.
Music_department | Color of Night
Dominic Carmen Frontiere, 86, Emmy and Golden Globe winning film and television composer, former head of music at Paramount Pictures, passed away in Tesuque, New Mexico on 21 December 2017. He is survived by his wife Robin and their children Emily, Joseph, Nicholas and Sofia, as well as daughter ...
22. Don Costa
Music_department | Hello, Dolly!
Don Costa was born on July 10, 1925 in Boston, Massachusetts, USA as Dominick P. Costa. He is known for his work on Hello, Dolly! (1969), Madigan (1968) and Lanigan's Rabbi (1976). He was married to Terry Ray Costa. He died on January 19, 1983 in New York City, New York, USA.
24. Donny Hathaway
Soundtrack | Two Weeks Notice
Donny Hathaway was born on October 1, 1945 in Chicago, Illinois, USA. He is known for his work on Two Weeks Notice (2002), The Intouchables (2011) and Malcolm X (1992). He was married to Eulaulah Hathaway. He died on January 13, 1979 in New York City, New York, USA.
29. Edwin Starr
Soundtrack | Adventures in Babysitting
Born Charles Hatcher in Nashville, Tennessee, Starr formed his first group, the Future Tones, in 1957, recording one single before his three-year army service. In 1965, he was offered a solo deal following two years of touring with another band.
Starr's early hits included "Agent Double-O Soul" and ...
35. Gordon Parks
Director | The Learning Tree
The pre-eminent American photojournalist of sub-Saharan descent. An acclaimed photographer for Life magazine from the late 40s through late 60s, he turned to directing films, his second of which, the blaxploitation movie Shaft (1971), achieved success at the box office. In 1989 his first film ...
39. Isaac Hayes
Actor | Escape from New York
Isaac Hayes was the second-born child of Isaac Sr. and Eula Hayes, but was raised by his grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Willie Wade Sr. The child of a poor family, he grew up picking cotton in Covington, Tennessee. He dropped out of high school, only to be encouraged later by his former high school ...
40. J.J. Johnson
Soundtrack | Sea of Love
J.J. Johnson was born on January 22, 1924 in Indianapolis, Indiana, USA as James Louis Johnson. He was a composer, known for Sea of Love (1989), Shaft (1971) and The Six Million Dollar Man (1974). He was married to Carolyn and Vivian. He died on February 4, 2001 in Indianapolis.
44. Jerry Butler
Soundtrack | Mr. Nobody
Jerry Butler got his start in the music business at age 18 when he and his friend Curtis Mayfield formed a singing group and named them The Impressions. They had an almost immediate hit with a song Butler wrote, "For Your Precious Love", which became the group's first gold record. Nicknamed "The ...
47. Johnny Harris
Music_department | The Powers of Matthew Star
Johnny Harris was born in Edinburgh, Scotland 1932 (of Welsh parentage) and is a graduate of the Guildhall School of Music in London. He originally played trumpet with English big bands in the 50's and started freelance writing and arranging in the early 60's before he was hired by Tony Hatch for ...
59. Paul Riser
Soundtrack | Coach Carter
Began his Motown career as a session trombonist and then began arranging. Arranged the majority of Motown's top hits from the '60s through the '80s. Biggest hits as an arranger include "My Girl" and "Papa Was A Rollin' Stone" by The Temptations, "I Heard It Through The Grapevine" by Marvin Gaye, "...
60. Quincy Jones
Producer | The Color Purple
Considered to be one of the greatest minds in music and television history, Quincy Delight Jones, Jr. was born on March 14, 1933 in Chicago, Illinois. He is the son of Sarah Frances (Wells), a bank executive, and Quincy Delight Jones, Sr., a carpenter.
Jones found his love for music while he was ...
Composer | Top of the World
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 ...
Composer | Tongue
Roger Hamilton Spotts is an American composer and arranger who has enjoyed a highly successful career that has spanned over five decades. He has collaborated with noted musicians such as Dizzy Gillespie, Ray Charles, Count Basie and Lionel Hampton, to name a few. For Roger, his 'work' was always a ...
66. Smokey Robinson
Soundtrack | Big Time
Multi-talented performer/writer/producer Smokey Robinson's career, and life, is inextricably tied up with Motown Records' founder Berry Gordy (his first two children are named Tamla, for the Gordy-owned label Smokey recorded for, and Berry, for Gordy himself). He and Gordy have had a professional ...
71. Thom Bell
Soundtrack | Avengers: Infinity War
Composer / arranger / record producer Thom Bell is known as one of the chief architects of "The Sound Of Philadelphia". In the mid-'60s he was the house pianist at The Uptown Theatre in Philadelphia and later became musical director for Chubby Checker. In 1966 he partnered up with entrepreneur Stan...
72. Tito Sotto
Tito Sotto was born on August 24, 1948 in Quezon City, Metro Manila, Luzon, Philippines as Vicente Castelo Sotto III. He is a composer and actor, known for Iskul Bukol: 20 Years After (The Ungasis and Escaleras Adventure) (2008), Naku ha! (1984) and Iskul bukol (1980). He is married to Helen Gamboa.
77. Willie Hutch
Soundtrack | Four Brothers
Extremely talented, versatile and ambitious R&B singer, songwriter, guitarist and producer Willie Hutch was born as Willie McKinley Hutchison on December 6, 1944 in Los Angeles. Willie grew up in Dallas, Texas and sang in the doo-wop group the Ambassadors as a teenager. Following graduation from ...