Artist picture of James Horner

James Horner

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Artist's Top Tracks

My Heart Will Go On Céline Dion, James Horner 05:10
A Gift Of A Thistle James Horner 01:37
Main Title James Horner 02:50
For The Love Of A Princess James Horner 04:07
Rose James Horner 02:52
Jake's first flight James Horner 04:49
The Secret Wedding James Horner 06:32
Pandora James Horner 03:17
Hymn to the Sea James Horner 06:25
Never an Absolution James Horner 03:02

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Biography

James Horner was a prolific American film composer with a long string of credits for major Hollywood movies including 'Titanic' for which he won two Academy Awards, one for the score and another for the song 'My Heart Will Go On' with lyrics by Will Jennings. The soundtrack album topped the UK's Official Albums Chart in 1998 and a sequel, 'Back to Titanic', went to number ten but topped Billboard's Classical Albums Chart. Celine Dion's recording of the song topped Billboard's Hot 100 and Adult Contemporary charts and the UK's Official Singles Chart. Horner and Jennings won Grammy Awards for Song of the Year and Best Song Written for a Motion Picture and the composer won for Record of the Year. He earned 14 Grammy Award nominations in total with wins for the score of 'Glory' (1990) and for Song of the Year and Best Song for Film Or TV for 'Somewhere Out There' from the animated feature 'An American Tail' (1987). He earned seven other Academy Award nominations for Best Score for 'Aliens' (1987), 'Field of Dreams' (1990), 'Braveheart' (1998), 'Apollo 13' (1998), 'Titanic' (1997), 'A Beautiful Mind' (2002), 'House of Sand and Fog' (2004) and 'Avatar' (2010) and one for Best Song for 'Whatever You Imagine' from 'The Pagemaster' (1995). He had Golden Globe nominations to match most of those along with nods for Best Score for 'Glory' (1990) and 'Field of Dreams' (1994).

Horner's Czech father Harry was a production designer in Hollywood who won Academy Awards for 'The Heiress' (1950) and 'The Hustler' (1962). He played the piano as a child and studied in England at the Royal College of Music. After graduating from the University of Southern California he began to write music for short films produced by the American Film Institute before director Lewis Teague hired him to write the music for his 1979 action drama 'The Lady in Red'. His career started in earnest with 'Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan' (1982) and continued with Walter Hills's '48 Hrs' (1982) and Michael Apted's 'Gorky Park' (1983). He collaborated with director Ron Howard on films such as 'Cocoon' (1985), 'Willow' (1998), 'Apollo 13' (1995) and 'A Beautiful Mind' (2001), with Mel Gibson on 'The Man Without a Face' (1993), 'Braveheart' (1995) and 'Apocalypto' (2006), with Jean-Jacques Annaud on 'The Name of the Rose' (1986), 'Enemy at the Gates' (2001) and 'Day of the Falcon' (2011) and with James Cameron on 'Aliens' (1986), 'Titanic' (1997) and 'Avatar' (2009).

He scored several animated features and composed for the concert hall including 'Double Concerto for Violin, Cello and Orchestra' which was recorded by the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, and 'Collage: A Concerto for Four Horns and Orchestra' which the London Philharmonic debuted at London's Royal Festival Hall in 2015. Horner died aged 61 in 2015, when the single-turboprop plane he was flying crashed in the Los Padres National Forest in Southern California. In its obituary the Guardian newspaper said he was "one of the most successful and admired composers of film soundtracks in Hollywood". His final score was used posthumously in 2016 for the Denzel Washington remake of 'The Magnificent Seven' which included an end title homage to Elmer Bernstein's much-loved theme for the 1960 Steve McQueen version.