Rockers Who Score Films - Rolling Stone
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Rockers Who Score Films

Bjork, Nick Cave, Daft Punk, Trent Reznor and more


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Sigur Ros' Jonsi created an original score for Cameron Crowe’s 2011 film, We Bought a ZooRolling Stone streams the soundtrack.

Daft Punk

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Daft Punk

Daft Punk collaborated with composer and producer Joseph Trapanese for the Tron: Legacy score. Daft Punk created 24 songs for the film over a period of two years. In addition to the band’s signature electronic sound, the score featured an 85-piece orchestra.

karen O

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Karen O

Karen O, lead singer for the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, is known for her tremendous stage presence and remarkable voice. She composed tracks for the soundtrack to the 2009 film Where the Wild Things Are, along with bandmate Nick Zinner. Karen O and the Kids' whimsical song "All is Love" was nominated for Best Song Written for a Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media at the Grammy Awards in 2010.

danny elfman

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Danny Elfman

Before Danny Elfman began composing scores for film and TV, he was the frontman for Oingo Boingo.  In addition to composing the theme songs for The Simpsons and Desperate Housewives, Elfman has composed scores for multiple films. He has worked with Tim Burton several times, creating the score for Pee-wee's Big Adventure, Beetlejuice, Batman, Edward Scissorhands, Mars Attacks!, Sleepy Hollow, Planet of the Apes, Big Fish, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Corpse Bride and Alice in Wonderland.

DJ Shadow

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DJ Shadow

DJ Shadow has shown his talent working as a DJ, music producer and songwriter. He broadened his portfolio when he produced and composed some of the songs included in the Dark Days film score. The film documents a group of people living on the fringe of society, in abandoned subway tunnels in New York City.

Mark Mothersbaugh

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Mark Mothersbaugh

Mark Mothersbaugh of the band Devo has been the creative mind behind the musical scores for countless films and TV series. Perhaps most notably, Mothersbaugh has scored most of Wes Anderson's films, including Bottle RocketRushmoreThe Royal Tenenbaums and The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou.

nick cave

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Nick Cave

Nick Cave has successfully transitioned from rock into composing, for films such as The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford in 2007. Cave and Warren Ellis also composed for The Road in 2009. The duo's first film project was for The Proposition (2005), directed by John Hillcoat. Here is the director of with Cave.  


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In 2000 Bjork teamed up with director Lars von Trier, starring in his film Dancer in the Dark and helping to create the original score. The soundtrack was a joint effort by Bjork, Mark Bell, Sjón and von Trier, who also included a handful of songs from The Sound of Music.

Stewart Copeland

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Stewart Copeland

Stewart Copeland, drummer for the Police, has had a very successful career composing soundtracks for films such as AirborneTalk RadioWall StreetSurviving the GameSee No Evil, Hear No EvilHighlander II: The QuickeningThe Leopard SonShe's Having a BabyTaking Care of BusinessI Am David and Good Burger, to name a few. Here is a still from the 1993 film Airborne.

tom waits

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Tom Waits

Tom Waits is featured in Rolling Stone's 100 Greatest Singers Of All Time list. In addition to his extraordinary career as a singer-songwriter, he collaborated with Crystal Gayle to create the original soundtrack for Francis Ford Coppola's film One From the Heart. Waits received a nomination for Best Music Score at the Academy Awards. Here is a still of Waits from the film.

Yo La Tengo

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Yo La Tengo

Yo La Tengo created their first original score, titled The Sounds of the Sounds of Science, for several short documentaries shot underwater by Jean Jean Painlevé. The band went on to work on numerous film scores, such as JunebugGame 6, Old Joy and Shortbus, to name a few.

Peter Gabriel

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Peter Gabriel

Peter Gabriel has composed numerous scores for TV series and films.  Among his film scores is the music for The Last Temptation of Christ, Rabbit-Proof Fence, Sea Monsters: A Prehistoric Adventure and Birdy.

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