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Overview for Randy Newman
Randy Newman

Randy Newman


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Also Known As: Died:
Born: November 28, 1943 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Los Angeles, California, USA Profession: Music ...


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Because his father was in the US Army between 1944-46, the family moved frequently, living in New Orleans, Louisiana; Jackson, Mississippi; and Mobile, Alabama. As a result, Newman's birthplace is often mistakenly said to be New Orleans.

As a child, Newman had four or five operations for crossed eyes.

Inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2002.

"I prefer making a little noise to being mellowed out. If I had to eliminate easy listening or heavy metal, I'd eliminate easy listening. If one thing had to go, I'd eliminate the sort of nice, mellow music to chew potato chips and talk to your friends by. I don't care for that too much. I like the edge to rock. Mostly, I admire people who say something." --Randy Newman quoted in Playboy, 1987.

"I know it's not the wisest thing to say when one is entering the field, but except for Stephen Sondheim and the occasional show like 'Falsettos', I don't think what's on Broadway today measures up to the past. Most television is better. To me there's no doubt about the fact that for years the best music has been rock-and-roll." --Newman to Stephen Holden in The New York Times, September 24, 1995.

"I always thought I'd do pictures. I had classical training and could do it, I thought. But, yeah, some trepidation because, I mean, they were strict. I'd have lunch at Fox where Lionel [Newman] and Jerry Goldsmith and Johnny Williams would be sitting around. I heard somebody say once, 'Oh, Beethoven's Emperor Concerto is a piece of shit.' It makes a kid a little nervous hearing that. They'd see a concert and be complaining: 'They never took the goddam mutes off.' So I'm listening to all this stuff, and my mouth drops open. It made you afraid to put a note down. Now I know, you know? Fuck it. It's just talk. As great as Johnny and Jerry are and were, there's room for others." --Newman quoted in The Hollywood Reporter Film & TV Music Special Issue, January 15, 1997.

"My uncles were kinda different in the way they dealt with how I didn't go in for their kind of Hollywood music composing careers. Emil was always supportive. Alfred mysteriously kept telling me, 'Whatever you do, keep writing songs.' Lionel was nice but he could also be rough. At a family party in the 80s, he was playing some 1930s songs, and called out to me, 'Rand? Is this song yours?' I told him it wasn't, and he answered, 'I was wondering, because it doesn't have a melody.'" --Newman to Robert Koehler, quoted in Daily Variety, July 15, 1997.

"Randy Newman should be a happy man, but he seems steeped in bitterness. He is bitter because the music he writes for the movies (like the upbeat score for 'Toy Story' and the lush orchestration for 'Ragtime') sells better, and earns more recognition, than the biting songs he writes for himself, songs like 'Short People,' 'Rednecks' and 'Lonely at the Top.'" --From The New York Times, March 22, 2002.

"It was a bigger deal than I'd have thought. I was actually touched when the orchestra stood up and the people stood up. I was surprised at how moved I was." --Newman on the response when he received the Oscar in People^, 04/15/02

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