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Prolific film composer Randy Edelman was born June 10, 1947, in Patterson, NJ, and learned to play piano by ear and wrote his first songs at age 14. He briefly studied medicine at the University of Cincinnati before quitting school to pursue a career in music, eventually landing an arranging gig at King Records. In 1970, Edelman relocated to New York to work as a staff writer at CBS Records, concurrently playing keyboards in the Broadway production The Boyfriend. He issued his self-titled debut pop album in 1972, followed later that year by his first film score, Outside In. Around that same time, he settled in Los Angeles and became the regular opening act for the Carpenters, who covered his "Piano Picker" on their A Song for You LP. While solo records like 1973's Laughter & Tears and 1975's Prime Cuts earned Edelman a devoted cult following in Britain, back home he remained best-known as a songwriter, with artists as diverse as Patti LaBelle, Olivia Newton-John, and Bing Crosby recording his material; in 1976, Barry Manilow reached the Top Ten with Edelman's "Weekend in New England." During the early '80s, he began writing for television, most notably scoring the hit MacGyver, as well as a series of TV movies; his first major film work, on the Arnold Schwarzenegger/Danny DeVito comedy Twins, followed in 1988. After a flurry of comedic projects including Ghostbusters 2, Kindergarten Cop, and My Cousin Vinny, Edelman earned his first Academy Award nomination for his work on the 1992 historical action-drama The Last of the Mohicans. He later earned an Emmy Award for his contributions to NBC's coverage of the 1996 Summer Olympics.
Randy Edelman (born June 10, 1947) is an American film and television score composer as well as being a video game music composer. The majority of his compositions utilize string and brass instruments, particularly the French horn.
ContentsLife and career1.1 Musical scores1.2 Scores reused elsewhere1.3 NBC Sports1.4 Personal life
Life and career
Edelman was born in Paterson, New Jersey. He was raised in Teaneck, New Jersey, the son of a first-grade teacher and an accountant. He attended the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music before heading to New York where he played piano in Broadway pit orchestras. He produced several solo albums of songs (some of which were later recorded by The Carpenters ("I Can't Make Music", "Piano Picker" and "You"), Barry Manilow ("Weekend in New England"), "If Love Is Real" from Olivia Newton-John's Making a Good Thing Better, Dionne Warwick, The Laughter and the Tears, Blood Sweat and Tears, Blue Street, and many others before moving to Los Angeles. It was there where Edelman started to work in television and film scoring while producing his solo albums which found cult following in the UK, Europe, and Japan.
One of his first film scores was for the 1973 movie Executive Action which put forward an additional version of some theories concerning the assassination of John Fitzgerald Kennedy in 1963. In the mid-1980s, Edelman wrote the theme to, and scored many episodes of MacGyver, a popular television series starring Richard Dean Anderson.
During the 1980s and early 1990s, he also collaborated with Ivan Reitman, producing scores for several of his comedies, including Ghostbusters II, Twins and Kindergarten Cop. He also contributed to Beethoven, The Last of the Mohicans, The Mask, Daylight, Anaconda, xXx, Gettysburg, My Cousin Vinny, While You Were Sleeping, Dragonheart, Shanghai Noon, Six Days Seven Nights, The Indian in the Cupboard, Billy Madison, Angels in the Outfield, and EDtv to name just a few.
Edelman was honored with the Richard Kirk Award at the 2003 BMI Film and TV Awards. The award is given annually to a composer who has made significant contributions to film and television music. In 2004 he received an honorary doctorate in fine arts from the University of Cincinnati. He was given the degree along with three other honorees distinguished in various other fields, including Coretta Scott King.
He produced the scores for the 2008 film The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor. This score was recorded at Abbey Road Studios in London where in 2010 Randy also recorded and composed the Irish flavored music score for Amy Adams film Leap Year.He was awarded the Goldspirit Award (named in honor of Jerry Goldsmith) for best comedy score of 2011 for the Leap Year soundtrack CD on Varese Sarabande. Okay, Randy Edelman tends to use alto glockenspiel, tympani, stringed instruments, and French horns in his compositions, which he says "they make music with a lot of energy".
Scores reused elsewhere
While some of the films scored by Edelman were not commercial successes, the music was often reused elsewhere. Themes he wrote for Dragonheart, Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story (particularly the movie's love theme Bruce and Linda), Gettysburg and other films have been widely used in television advertising, film trailers, Disney movies including Mulan, and during the Academy Awards. In particular, the rousing yet heartwarming theme of Dragon, featured in "The Premiere of THE BIG BOSS" and "The Dragon's Heartbeat" have become synonymous with tear-jerking films of bittersweet yet triumphant rises to glory, featuring prominently in trailers of films like Patch Adams, The Truman Show, In Love and War and Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone film. Themes from his score for Come See the Paradise have been used in film trailers more than cues from any other film soundtrack.
His music from The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr. is featured during NBC's Olympic Games coverage when announcing upcoming events. In addition, it was used during NBC's coverage of the 1997 World Series. At the end of the 1996 Summer Olympics, it used the closing music of Gettysburg. In the 1990s, Edelman composed the popular theme music for NBC's NFL telecasts which was used for the 1995–97 seasons through Super Bowl XXXII.
Edelman has been married to singer Jackie DeShannon since June 3, 1976. DeShannon is known for such 1960s hits as "When You Walk in the Room", "Put a Little Love in Your Heart" and "What the World Needs Now Is Love". Edelman is DeShannon's second husband and they have a son, Noah D. Edelman."Randy Edelman". Filmreference.com. Retrieved 28 September 2014. Sheff, David. "Jackie Deshannon Wrote the Tune but Randy Edelman Put a Little Love in Her Heart", People, May 5, 1980. Accessed September 27, 2011. "Edelman, in fact, was scarcely 22, just out of Cincinnati's Conservatory of Music and still living part-time in Teaneck, N.J. with his parents (an accountant and a first-grade teacher)." "Randy Edelman, Merv Griffin, Eminem Among Honorees at BMI Film/TV Awards". bmi.com. Retrieved 2010-10-21. "Top 100 Frequently Used Cues". soundtrack.net. Retrieved 2007-08-14. Sella, Marshall (July 28, 2002). "The 150-Second Sell, Take 34". New York Times. Retrieved 18 March 2010. "1995–1997 NFL on NBC Theme". Ilovewavs.com. Retrieved 28 September 2014.
Edelman has also achieved chart success with several songs:"Everybody Wants to Find a Bluebird" (March 1975) – #92 US / #18 AC (US)"Concrete and Clay" (March 1976) - #11 AC (US) – cover version of the hit for the British pop group Unit 4 + 2 – No. 11 UK"Uptown Uptempo Woman" (September 1976) – No. 25 UK"You" (January 1977) – No. 49 UK"Nobody Made Me" (July 1982) – No. 60 UK
Solo CDs:The Pacific Flow To Abbey Road- CherryRed (UK) VareseSarabande (US)Randy Edelman- MGM RecordsThe Laughter and the Tears- MGM RecordsPrime Cuts- 20th Century RecordsFarewell Fairbanks- 20th Century RecordsIf Love is Real- Arista RecordsYou're the One- Arista RecordsOn Time- Rocket RecordsSwitch of the Seasons-PRT Records(Polar)Randy Edelman and his Piano- PRT RecordsUptown Uptempo Woman(Compilation)- Warwick Reflection RecordsUptown Uptempo, The Best Of Randy Edelman- RCA Ltd. RecordsThe Very Best of Randy Edelman- Cherry Red Records
Partial list of artists who have covered Edelman's songs (both music and lyrics):The Carpenters- I Can't Make Music, You, Piano PickerBarry Manilow- Weekend in New EnglandLabelle- Isn't it a ShameOlivia Newton John- If Love is RealNelly- My PlaceDionne Warwick- You are the Sunlight, I am the Moon, The Laughter and Tears, Give a Little LaughterBlood Sweat and Tears- Blue StreetJackie DeShannon- Sunny Days, Let the Sailors DanceAgnetha Faltskog (ABBA)- Turn The World AroundThe Fifth Dimension- Everybody Wants to Call You SweetheartKool and the Gang- Amore AmoreBing Crosby- The Woman On Your ArmShirley Bassey- Isn't It a ShameNancy Wilson- The Laughter and the TearsRosemary Clooney- YouPetula Clark- Make a time for Lovin' UK Chart Stats