Twin Peaks Composer Angelo Badalamenti Dead At 85

Badalamenti worked frequently with David Lynch on his many surreal, ethereal, and memorable projects.


Angelo Badalamenti, the famed composer perhaps best known for his collaborations with filmmaker David Lynch, has died. According to the fan site Welcome to Twin Peaks, several of Badalamenti's family members confirmed his death on Monday.

No cause of death was given.

Badalamenti died at 85, ending a decades-long career collaboration with Lynch--the pair began working together after being brought on as a singing coach for Isabella Rossellini on the 1986 film Blue Velvet. Badalamenti eventually became Lynch's go-to composer, creating music for Twin Peaks, Lost Highway, and Mulholland Drive. In 1990, Badalamenti won a Grammy Award for Best Pop Instrumental Performance for his work on Twin Peaks. Lynch, in typical heartfelt but cryptic fashion, hinted at his collaborator's death and the loss of his "brother" saying "today… no music" on his daily weather report.

"I sit with Angelo and talk to him about a scene and he begins to play those words on the piano," Lynch told The New York Times in 2005, explaining their process. "Sometimes we would even get together and make stuff up on the piano, and before you know it that leads to the idea for a scene or a character."

In addition to frequently working with Lynch, Badalamenti also collaborated with David Bowie, Paul McCartney, Nina Simone, Liza Minnelli, Michael Jackson, LL Cool J, Pet Shop Boys, and Marianne Faithfull. Badalamenti composed the opening theme to the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona.

The Brooklyn-born musician worked as a music teacher in Dyker Heights, Brooklyn, before Lynch changed the entire arc of his life and career.

The family's statement in part reads that "Angelo stayed true to his roots and family, never leaving North Jersey for LA. Not to mention the casual but mind-blowing stories he never ran out of. He will be truly missed by many. 'Who has lived a good life has a good death.'"

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