Angelo Badalamenti: Twin Peaks theme and Blue Velvet soundtrack composer dead at 85 - what David Lynch said

Longtime collaborator David Lynch simply said, ‘today... no music’ in tribute

<p>Angelo Badalamenti performing in 2015 (Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty Images)</p>

Angelo Badalamenti performing in 2015 (Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

US composer Angelo Badalamenti, who is best known for writing the music for Twin Peaks, has died at the age of 85, his family has confirmed.

In 1990, Badalamenti received a Grammy for the stirring soundtrack and collaborated closely with David Lynch, the show’s director. He died on Sunday (11 December) of natural causes, surrounded by family members.

“The family of Composer Angelo Badalamenti, best known for his work with director David Lynch confirms that the composer, loving husband, father and grandfather passed away on December 11th 2022 peacefully of natural causes, surrounded by his family,” the family statement read.

“The family appreciates their privacy at this time.”

But who was Badalamenti, and what else did he work on over his long career? Here is everything you need to know.

Who was Angelo Badalamenti?

Badalamenti was born in 1937 in Brooklyn, New York, and began taking piano lessons at age eight. By the time he was a teenager, his aptitude at the piano led to him being hired as a summer pianist at resorts in the Catskill Mountains to accompany vocalists.

His elder brother was a jazz trumpet player who used to improvise with other musicians, and Badalamenti also attended Latin American dance clubs.

He later enrolled at the Eastman School of Music at the University of Rochester, but after two years he transferred to the Manhattan School of Music, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in 1958 and a master’s degree in 1959.

Badalamenti wrote the soundtrack to Lynch’s 1986 American neo-noir mystery thriller Blue Velvet, after he was brought in to be Isabella Rossellini’s singing coach for the song title song of the film.

He also scored the soundtrack to Lynch’s 2001’s Mulholland Drive, and the Twin Peaks soundtrack won him the 1990 Grammy award for best pop instrumental performance.

He was later awarded the lifetime achievement award from the World Soundtrack Awards as well as the Henry Mancini award from the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers.

How did he die?

Badalamenti and his wife, Lonny, married in 1968 and had two children. He died at his home in Lincoln Park, New Jersey, of natural causes on 11 December, surrounded by family members.

Lynch, during his daily installment of his Weather Report vlog said on December 12: "today... no music”.