Written by Aaron Fullan
"James Horner: Oscar-winning Titanic composer dies in crash." That headline hit me like a ton of hot bricks last week when I was skimming through my Facebook news feed.
James Horner was one of my all-time favorite film scorers. The man was a musical genius. In my opinion, he wrote some of the most beautiful melodies of all time. A legend, by all accounts!
Ironically, this past September, I finally took the initiative to write to James Horner and thank him for his musical influence on my life. As somewhat of a tribute to his life, I want to share that letter with you now:
Dear James Horner,
I can’t tell you how much your music has meant to me. I have loved film scores for as long as I can remember and your music has inspired me to pursue that passion with determination. Your scores are iconic, memorable, and downright appealing! From epic to intimate, soul-searching to rip-roaring adventure, inconsolable sorrow to uncontainable joy, the scores you have written have seen no limits. Two of my absolute favorite scores are Land Before Time and Glory. Amazing.
As a result of your influence, I have passionately pursued music composition since a very young age. I know the market for music composition is a large one and the chance of acquiring the reputation that you have is slim, but I wanted to thank you for your dedication to your gift. It has inspired many young composers such as myself to strive to be the best musicians we can be. And as my employer always says, “never despise small beginnings.”
I sincerely hope that I am able to make your acquaintance someday and learn from you on a personal basis! I’ve always thought about how incredible it would be to come observe one of your scoring sessions and see how the whole process works.
Who knows, maybe we’ll co-op on a score someday… :)
With warmest regards from one of your most faithful listeners,
I felt an innate sense of sadness when I re-read this letter this past week. A sadness that comes from realizing that life is brief and unpredictable. I'm sure James Horner thought he had many more years of film scoring ahead of him when he went up in his plane that fateful day...but he didn't. Rather, he died tragically and stepped into eternity. As will all of us! Any time, any day!
Time is not our own. Life is not our own. God alone is in charge of those details.
"Now listen, you who say, 'Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.' Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes." [James 4:13-14]
May this verse (and the life/death of James Horner) inspire us to live each and every day as if it were our last, for we never know what a day may bring forth.
"Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ." [Colossians 3:23]
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