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Carl Stalling
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    (November 10, 1891-November 29, 1972)
    Born in Lexington, Missouri
    Composed scores for the Mickey Mouse shorts 'Plane Crazy' (1928) and 'The Gallopin' Gaucho' (1928)
    Composed scores for several of Disney's 'Silly Symphonies' cartoons
    Composed scores for Warner Brothers' 'Looney Tunes' and 'Merrie Melodie' cartoons (1936-58)
    He had a hearing loss that he claimed did not affect his music but did force him to drop out of school. ('I couldn't hear the teachers, so I had to quit.')
    He granted only one interview about his work.
    He has been called 'the most famous unknown composer' of the 20th century.
    His use of songs as musical puns ticked off some of the animators, with Chuck Jones noting, ' If there was a lady dressed in red, he'd always play 'The Lady in Red.' If we were doing anything about eating, he'd do 'A Cup of Coffee, A Sandwich, and You.' I had a bee one time, and my God, if he didn't go and find a piece of music written in 1906 or something called 'I'm a Busy Little Bumble Bee.''
    As a teen, he played the piano in his hometown theater to accompany silent movies, which he said was great training for becoming a composer.
    At Warners, he wrote at an average pace of nearly a score a week for 22 years.
    With fellow movie composers Max Steiner and Scott Bradley, he created the click track to keep scores in synch with the film.
    A critic wrote, 'Stalling's music is always as vigorous, funny and inventive as the animation is.'

Credit: C. Fishel

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