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Tew is known as a composer of library music, including the theme tunes for British TV programmes, Doctor in the House called "Bond Street Parade" and the theme for ...And Mother Makes Three. He also composed all the music for the series, The Hanged Man, some of which has been used as incidental music for The Two Ronnies, The Sweeney, the 2009 blacksploitation spoof Black Dynamite, and would eventually become the intro music for the American TV series, The People's Court. That same track, entitled "The Big One", was used in an episode of the British detective show Van der Valk.
Tew also has led his own orchestra, The Alan Tew Orchestra, and collaborated with Cat Stevens.
During his career, Tew a number of orchestral albums with highly imaginative arrangements for the CBS label, though none of them have been reissued on CD. In particular, Tew's album The Magnificent Westerns (1969) is very highly regarded.
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