Alan Hawkshaw death: TV composer behind Grange Hill and Countdown themes dies

Tributes were paid to legendary TV composer Alan Hawkshaw, who died aged 84

Alan was responsible for some UK television themes including Countdown, Grange Hill and Channel 4 News.

The news was shared this evening by artistic agency DNYA Music Limited.

“Proud Leeds-born composer, musician and performer Alan Hawkshaw has tragically passed away,” they said in a statement.

“He was the originator of incredible theme songs such as Grange Hill, Channel 4 News, Countdown, Dave Allen at Large, Arthur C Clarke’s Mysterious World to name a few.”

The post went on to highlight Alan’s work over more than 7,000 recording sessions, alongside huge artists such as Tom Jones, Barbara Streisand and David Bowie.



Legendary composer Alan Hawkshaw has died aged 84

The statement continued: “One of the most sampled musicians in the world, hip-hop producers in particular have plundered Alan’s catalog of works, including the largest of them, Jay-Z with Pray who was on the American Gangster album.

“Alan would often joke:” I am one of the oldest rap artists in the world! “

He also said of Streisand, “Barbara kept this song for eight years until I sent her a note through one of her attorneys saying please save it before the one of us does not die. (Barbara then recorded Alan’s song Why Let It Go. “

Alan reportedly suffered a fourth stroke in July this year.

He was recovering at home but was admitted to hospital this week with pneumonia.



Tributes were paid to Alan who was behind many of Britain’s most iconic TV themes

He leaves his wife Christine, who said in a statement: “It was heartbreaking to say goodbye to Alan, my husband of 53 years and the love of my life.

“We spent the last few hours looking at each other lovingly, holding hands without needing words.

“I told him that he and I were forever, and even though he hadn’t been able to speak for the past two months, he did manage a few ‘forever’ and I knew he was at peace. you love someone that much, you have to let them go. “

Tributes have also been shared on Twitter by admirers of Alan’s work over the years.

“Goodbye Alan Hawkshaw. He wrote The Champ. He performed on Melody Nelson. He was in the shadows. He wrote the themes of Grange Hill, Countdown and Channel 4 News. I haven’t heard any at least. one, ”said one of them.

Another wrote: “Very sad to hear of the death of Alan Hawkshaw, the composer, musician and library musician who gave us classic tunes such as Grange Hill and performed with many greats. Thoughts to his friends and to his family, including his daughter Kirsty of Opus III fame. The Champion. “

“RIP Alan Hawkshaw. His stage music and legendary themed melodies have been the soundtrack of our lives: Dave Allen, The Sweeney, Countdown, The Kenny Everett Video Show, Grange Hill, Tucker’s Luck and Arthur C Clarke’s World of Strange Powers to name a few, said a third.


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