James Horner (1953 – 2015)

I’d like to take a moment to acknowledge the passing of an amazing talent and a great artist. News sources are reporting today that composer James Horner has died in a plane crash in California.

james_horner

James Horner composed the score for more than ninety films, including Glory, A Beautiful Mind, Avatar, and Titanic. His music is beautifully evocative and emotional. It’s music to listen to when you want to feel moved and inspired.

I bought the soundtrack to Glory on cassette tape soon after seeing the film. I listened to it over and over again until parts of the tape were stretched too thin to play properly. The music affected me deeply, recalling vivid imagery and intense emotions. At first I simply remembered scenes from the film, but then the music began to inspire new ideas. Characters and plots emerged. Listening to that soundtrack, I formed complete narratives in my mind. I could sit back, close my eyes, listen to the music, and the stories would play like private films across my eyelids, with every turning point and revelation cued in perfect time by the score.

That wasn’t the last of his soundtracks to have that effect. I can’t recall how many stories and ideas his work inspired in me.

James Horner’s music wasn’t just well-crafted and aesthetically pleasing. It’s beauty and creativity overflowed, moving his listeners’ imaginations, inspiring many to create works of their own. That effect is a testament to his artistry.

My condolences to James Horner’s family, friends, and fans. The movies won’t be quite the same without him.

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