Covid kills a major US composer

Covid kills a major US composer


norman lebrecht

December 09, 2020

The rock musician Brian Eno was first to break the sad news that Harold Budd has died, of Covid-19 complications.

Budd, who was 84, was born in Los Angeles and raised in the Mojave Desert. In music, he crossed many genres.


He hung out with the iconoclasts John Cage, Morton Feldman and Terry Riley as much as he did with the California rock scene. Although he gave up composing for the 1970s, having ‘minimalized myself out of existence’, his works were revered by the avant-garde, which irked him. ‘I found a new direction, in which I purposely tried to create music that was so sweet and pretty and decorative that it would positively upset and revolt the avant-garde,’ he said. It marked a breakthrough into Satie-like ambient music.

He lived in London in the 1980s, immersed in its diversity and becoming invilved in film music.

His last album, Another Flower, was released only last week.


  • What do you get when you play new age music backwards? New age music.

  • Lord Bus Stop says:

    He collaborated with The Cocteau Twins on the wonderful record _The Moon and the Melodies_.

  • Plush says:

    A star in Chicago. Sad news.

  • Ed Meares says:

    A lovely person. A wonderful teacher. A pure musical mind. Music of great richness and depth, without compromise.

  • DLOC says:

    A master of melancholy is gone.
    Rest in peace Harold Budd