David Raksin was an American composer of classical and film music. He was born in Philadelphia in 1912 and studied at the University of Pennsylvania and the Curtis Institute of Music. He is best known for writing the music for the classic film noir Laura, for which he was nominated for an Academy Award in 1944. His other notable film scores include Forever Amber, The Bad and the Beautiful, and The Secret Life of Walter Mitty.
Raksin’s most popular albums include the 1956 collection Film Music of David Raksin, and the 1994 compilation David Raksin Conducts David Raksin. Among his standout songs are the title track from Laura, “The Bad and the Beautiful,” and “Lush Life,” which has been covered by numerous jazz musicians.
An interesting fact about Raksin is that he was a protégé of Aaron Copland and studied composition with Roger Sessions, among other notable composers. He was also an accomplished pianist and conducted many of his own compositions.