Few composers have built as illustrious a resume as John Barry, dead at 77, who won four Oscars over the course of his 40-odd-year career. While he might've gotten accolades for scores like Dances With Wolves, Out of Africa and Body Heat, his work on such films as Black Hole, King Kong and various Bond flicks are still a wonder to behold.
"He was the reason why I got into film music," said David Arnold, who picked up the Bond score baton from Barry after The Living Daylights. "It's a profound loss for everyone. He was gruff and forthright and hilarious. But it's the musical legacy that's astonishing. The music he wrote often transcended the film he wrote it for. James Bond would have been far less cool without John Barry holding his hand."
The "James Bond Theme"
Even though the most famous movie theme of all time is credited to Monty Norman, it was Barry's arrangement on Dr. No (1962) that achieved cultural immortality. Barry would go on to compose the music for 11 more Bond films.