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Allyn Ferguson, Emmy-winning theme song composer, dies

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif. - Allyn Ferguson, an Emmy-winning composer who co-wrote the themes for the 1970s TV shows "Charlie's Angels" and "Barney Miller," has died at 85.

Ferguson died at his home in Westlake Village near Los Angeles on June 23, his daughter, Jill Ferguson, said.

Ferguson wrote scores for dozens of TV episodes in the 1970s and 1980s but he may be best-known for the "Charlie's Angels" and "Barney Miller" themes he co-wrote with Jack Elliott.

He received eight Emmy nominations, winning the award for music composition in 1985 for scoring a television adaptation of the classic novel "Camille." It was one of several literary adaptations that Ferguson scored for producer Norman Rosemont.

"Allyn will always be remembered as the co-writer of two iconic television themes," said Jon Burlingame, author of "TV's Biggest Hits." "But I think his real strength was in writing large-scale orchestral scores for Rosemont.

"He'd often write lavish orchestral scores, some very swashbuckling in nature, that helped to set the mood and place the viewer in the proper period," Burlingame said. "It was great stuff; he was really good at this." Ferguson also conducted and was musical co-director for Academy Award, Emmy and Grammy shows.

During his career, Ferguson also was an arranger or musical director for artists such as Sarah Vaughan, Andy Williams, Johnny Mathis and Julie Andrews.

He wrote the arrangements for the Count Basie Orchestra's 1998 Grammy-winning album, "Count Plays Duke."

- AP

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