John Scott Biography

Patrick John Michael O’Hara Scott, 1 November 1930, Bristol, England. After being very active in the 60s pop scene, Scott has developed into a respected film music composer, now living in London and Hollywood. During his early career he acted as staff arranger with the Ted Heath band, playing saxophone, clarinet, harp and flute; for many years he was regarded as one of England’s foremost jazz flautists. ‘Johnny’ Scott (as he was then known) also played in the Woody Herman orchestra, and arranged for Bert Ambrose. He claimed to have learned much from Henry Mancini, when playing for him on flute and saxophone in London sessions for films including Charade and Arabesque. For a while he worked closely with John Barry in The John Barry Seven, and played on Barry’s scores for Beat Girl (1959) and The Whisperers (1967), as well as on several early James Bond movies. In the record studios Scott accompanied Cilla Black, Tom Jones, Matt Monro, the Hollies, Shirley Bassey, Elkie Brooks, Gerry And The Pacemakers, P.J. Proby, Edward Woodward, the Mike Sammes Singers, Freddie And The Dreamers, Spike Milligan and Charlie Drake. In the mid-60s he formed his own jazz combo - the Johnny Scott Quintet - playing flute with Duncan Lamont on saxophone, Barry Morgan on drums, David Snell on harp and Arthur Watts on bass. His growing interest in composition led him to offer his work to mood music publishers for their recorded music libraries, for the use of radio, film and television companies. Scott’s music was published by Keith Prowse, Peer International and Boosey & Hawkes. His score for a 1965 promotional film Shellarama brought offers for his first feature film, A Study In Terror (1965), which he wrote as ‘Patrick John Scott’. He was persuaded to change it to ‘Johnny’, but as his film work grew he decided that ‘John’ seemed more suitable. His next assignments included Doctor In Clover (1966), Rocket To The Moon (1966) and The Long Duel (1967). In 1971 an operation on his lower jaw forced him to give up playing, since when he has concentrated on composition. Major film scores followed: Jerusalem File (1971), Antony And Cleopatra (1972), England Made Me (1973), Penny Gold (1973), The Final Countdown (1980), Greystoke (1984), The Shooting Party (1984), King Kong Lives (1986), Deadly Pursuit (US title Shoot To Kill) (1987), Man On Fire (1987), The Deceivers (1988), Winter People (1989), Black Rainbow (1990). His work onInseminoid (1980) received the 1981 award for Best Musical Score at the International Festival of Horror and Science Fiction films in Madrid, Spain. Television credits include themes for Thames Report (ITV), Tonight (BBC), Midweek (BBC), Nationwide (BBC) and episodes for The World About Us (BBC), The Queen’s Garden (1985) and Survival (Anglia Television). Recent work has included numerous Jacques Cousteau specials such as Clipperton - The Island Time Forgot (1981), The Warm Blooded Sea (1983), The Amazon (1983) and the Cousteau 75th Birthday tribute (1985). His television work has been rewarded with two Emmys - Wild Dogs Of Africa (a 1972 documentary) and Little Vic (a 1978 mini-series). After years of making recordings with many record companies, Scott has established his own label JOS Records to promote his own scores.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.

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