Monty Norman, original composer of James Bond music, dies aged 94

Monty Norman, original composer of James Bond music, dies aged 94

Author of songs for Cliff Richard and Tommy Steel, traveling companion of Benny Hill, he signed the soundtrack of James Bond versus Dr No.

Monty Norman, author of the original plot of the music of James Bond, died Monday July 11 at the age of 94, announced his official site. “It is with great sadness that we share the news that Monty Norman passed away on July 11, 2022 after a brief illness.“, Can we read on the site, which displays a large black and white photo of the composer, displaying a frank smile.

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Created for the first film of the saga, James Bond versus Dr No (1962), the version of Monty Norman’s music did not convince the producers, who asked John Barry (who died in January 2011), a monument to film music (Midnight Cowboy, Out of Africa, etc.), to retouch it. The latter later claimed authorship of the work, but in March 2001 Monty Norman won a libel suit against the Sunday Times, who attributed it to John Barry. Monty Norman had ordered the newspaper to pay 30,000 pounds (48,000 euros at the time) in damages for this article published in October 1997.

First guitar at the age of 16

Born in east London to a Jewish family that left the British capital in the early days of the Blitz at the start of World War II, he got his first guitar at the age of 16, given to him by his mother, and discovers the Beatles and Eric Clapton. In the 1950s and early 1960s, he sang for jazz groups, including those of Cyril Stapleton, Ted Heath and Nat Temple, and participated in variety shows.

Alongside entertainer Benny Hill, he hits the road, taking turns headlining according to the preferences of the city where they were: comedy or music. He then began to compose, and wrote songs for Cliff Richard and Tommy Steel, one of the pioneers of rock in the United Kingdom, as well as for musicals, such as Make Me An Offer and Espresso Bongo.

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