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All you have to know about James Horner

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All you have to know about James Horner

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All you have to know about James Horner

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All you have to know


about James Horner
The Biography, a little about his life.
His work, the story of his work life.
Horner today, a present view of James Horner.
Awards, all he have won and have lost.
Filmography, all he had done.
Top ten, we choose the better.
Links, other information points.

Biography

James Horner was born at 14 august 1953 at "Los Angeles" but soon, he moved to London where he studied at the Royal
College of Music. He was teached by Gyorgy Ligeti, a Hungary composer. He's important for the music appeared at the
movie "2001, a space odyssey". He also studied at the Holland Park School of London. At 1970 he had moved to "Los
Angeles" where he obtained a place to teach at the USC and he had donor a master at UCLA where he learned to improve
his composition and the music theory.

His work

He accepted to write filmmusic at 1978. His first compositions where made to the American Film Institute with serial B
movies and some TV programs. The better known of these works is his score to Battle Beyond the Stars by Roger
Corman.
In 1979 he made his first serious important movie The lady in red by Lewis Teague.
In 1981, James Horner began to show us his qualities like a composer, and with a peculiar sonority with some relative
importance like The Hand by Oliver Stone and Deadly Blessing by Wes Craven, where some rhythmical figures and
orchestral sounds that will mark him on the future.
In 1982, the public knew him with the second film of Star Trek saga (we can remember that the first film was composed
by the master Jerry Goldsmith) called Star Trek II, the wrath of Khan by Nicholas Meyer. Horner began to work with no
usual instruments combined with the orchestra. This fantastic combination he obtained a great majesty and a style very
defined. Also he can introduce the TV theme series composed by Alexander Courage with the talent of a master. In the
same year, he composed 48 Hours by Walter Gill with a good and very interesting jazz sound.
1983 was the year of the great soundtracks, one of them Krull by Peter Yates: The symphonise of Horner is very clear
and it's considerated like a essential score on the James Horner discography and also it was very difficult to find some
years later. The other great film was Brainstorm by Douglas Trumbull with the London Symphony Orchestra, the
Ambrosian Singers and The Choir of New College (Oxford). He used synthesiser sounds and he created a fascinating
composition with a lot shades of colour and really good score in the discography of this composer.
Until 1985 he composed a few scores but he was consolidated in the world of the film music. On Gorky Park by Michael
Apted he combined the main theme of the movie with the 1812 Tchaikovski's operture; Star Trek III and Commando are
other interesting scores. But the better work of these years is Cocoon, that marvellous film by Ron Howard with the
symfonism of John Williams but with an own sonority and a fantastic melodic main theme that is remembered and copied.
In 1986 he scored two important soundtracks with Award Nominations by the Academy and other critic awards. They are
An american tail by Don Bluth and Aliens by Ridley Scott. In Aliens, James Horner changed the previous sonority and he
made a score without any copy with the fantastic Goldsmith previous score for Alien. We follow him on the movie with an
obsession rhythm, military fanfares, adagios and claustrophobic themes. An american tail became a reference point in
cartoon movies and the next Horner films. This year is important too because he composed the song "Somewhere out
there" that Linda Ronstadt and James Ingram sing, was one of the most sold of the year and nominated as the Best Song
at the academy awards. That year he composed also other two important scores because they are very singular, When
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All you have to know about James Horner

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the River Runs Black, by Christopher Cain with a lot of electronic sounds and The Name of the Rose, by Jaen-Jaques
Annaud where he can mix Gregorian style, bell sounds and some incredible chorus.
1988 is the year of his consecrated and the year when he arrived to the general public and all people began to compare
him with John Williams because his score for Willow by Ron Howard, a big score. This soundtrack begin the collaboration
between Horner, Ian Underwood and Kazu Matsui, a Japanese music known to play the Japanese instrument shakauachi
that he has used again in Legends of the Fall. That same year he repeat the success of An American Tail with another
Don Bluth production, The Land Before Time, as same as Willow, with the collaboration of the London Symphony
Orchestra and The King's college Choir, he obtained a similar score than An American Tail but with more quality. With this
movie he produced a song singed by Diana Ross that became a great commercial success. Also he composed the second
part of Cocoon, Cocoon, The Return. With Dad by Gary Goldberg, Horner worked again with Ian Underwood to obtain a
rhythmical jazz soundtrack where the orchestra it.
But 1989 it was the same without Field of dreams by Phil Alder Robinson and Glory by Ed Zwick. In the first, he scored a
new award nomination and in the second a magnificent main theme and a good chorus score with the collaboration of
The Boys Choir of Harlem, incredible and used in a lot of trailers and events. The soundtrack gives a lot to the movie,
emotional and force. That is the first score of the collaboration between Horner and Ed Zwick. Until the second part of An
American Tail, Fievel Goes West, he produced mediocre scores. Fievel goes west combine a western with some parts of
the previous score with a lot of suggestive songs, really good songs.
Successively he scored Once Around, a jazz Glenn Miller style score, Rocketeer, that remember us Willow for the good
main theme with a lot of force with a lot of sonority, rhythm and a good symphonic composition.
On 1992, he produced three soundtracks with success: Patriots Games, with Celtic and Irish music and the appropriated
tension that the movie needs; Sneakers is another of that rare scores where the sound of the clarinet (played by Winston
Marshalis) is very special, a cord section with electric tension combined with other orchestra action themes. Thunderheart
was a forgotten movie, with a very good score, with Indians sounds and the orchestra. Like we can see James Horner
combines a lot of music with his orchestration.
1993 was the year of the intimacy in soundtracks and he didn't need a magnificent symphony, but he had done his work
at the perfect point. We have to remember Bopha, African style according to the movie, and Searching for Bobby Fischer,
a score that we can't easy listen at the movie but it's very suggestive for his simplicity and a good melody, perhaps
similar at that point with Sneakers. At that point we can say that we enter to the today Horner days, where he combined
his sonority, the chorus and the air music, the long and easy identify melodies like on Legends of the fall. This is a new
collaboration with Ed Zwick appears to be a leiv-motiv all the movie, but this is false because if you listen on the compact
you can hear the tenderness and the feeling of James. He collaborates again with Kazu Matsui and Shakauachi, and it's
the score to discover for all music lovers and indispensable to the film music lovers.
1995 was his year, for the quantity and the quality and also he was won at the Academic Awards ceremony because he
had to win the award. We want to stand out: Braveheart by Mel Gibson and Apollo 13 by Ron Howard. The first it's a
extension of Legends of the Fall but with a complete orchestration well combined with intimate music and great themes
with Celtic inspiration, very well known for all of you it's a marvellous score. Apollo 13 was the surprise, because all of us
expected a great "fanfare" soundtrack, with the Williams style but Horner created a intimate score with force in some
moments to tell us the valour that the movie show us. It's a pity that the normal edition of the soundtrack is very horrible
with a lot of songs.
The 1996 was a year where he composed a lot of music. We can remark the soundtracks for Courage under fire, To
Gillian on her 37th Birthday, The Spitfire Grill and Ransom. They are good soundtracks but, perhaps, they are too similar
at other works he had done. Actually the better of them is The Spitfire Grill but there are two good themes in each of To
Gillian on her 37th Birthday and Courage under fire. In the other line, Ransom is really bad with a lot of songs and the
score is really bad. The worse he had done in the last times.
In the end of 1997 it was time for James Horner's biggest success ever. When he heard that James Cameron was making
a film about Titanic, he knew that this whas the movie he was born to score. And he was right - the score, and the song
"My Heart Will Go On", was a big success and earned him his two first Academy Awards. The soundtrack topped the
Billboard chart for 16 weeks, and has sold over 30 million copies worldwide, making it the best selling soundtrack ever,
and Horner a very happy, and rich man. The other composition in this year is The Devil's Own. The last years aren't too
productive for him: Mighty Joe Young, an IMAX movie called "Epic Journeys: The Great Migrations" and Bicentennal Man.
Not really good.
In 2000, he had composed a fantastic score, "The Perfect Storm". Incredible music for a spectacular film. With his music,
he descrives the adventure of some people in the middle of a incredible storm. He uses his music to imporve the effect of
tension. Is incredible what he had done with this film. Belive me, if you wanna buy some of the last James Horner's
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All you have to know about James Horner

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scores, you must get this one. But with his last score, we can't say the same, "How the grinch stole Christmas" is really
desapointing. But what he can do with these kind of films. We all expect the following compositions, we would like as
better as "The Perfect Storm".

Horner Today

James Horner is the beneficiary of the descent of other composers, combined with his talent and the success of his last
year and his youth (45 years), he can be a composer with a fantastic future and brilliant present.

Awards
Academy Awards:
1986: Aliens, best score nomination.
1986: An American Tail, best song nomination.
1989: Field of Dreams, best score nomination.
1995: Braveheart, best dramatic score nomination.
1995: Apollo 13, best dramatic score nomination.
1997: Titanic, best dramatic winner.
1997: My heart will go on, best song from Titanic
Grammies:
1986: An American Tail, best song of the year
1986: An American Tail, best movie song
Golden Globe:
1995: Braveheart, best score.
1997: Titanic, best score
1997: Titanic, best song

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