Paul Buckmaster

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Paul Buckmaster
Birth name Paul John Buckmaster
Born 1946 (age 68–69)
London, England
Genres Classical, rock, pop, country, film score
Occupation(s) Musician, composer, arranger, film composer, conductor
Instruments Cello, synthesizer

Paul John Buckmaster (born in 1946, London, England) is a Grammy Award-winning English artist, arranger, conductor and composer.

He began learning the cello at the age of 4 and graduated from the Royal Academy of Music at age 21.[1]

He is perhaps best known for his orchestral collaborations with Elton John. He has displayed professional mastery as a cellist but he has also worked as an arranger on various hit songs, including David Bowie's Space Oddity (1969), and helped Miles Davis with the preparation of On the Corner. He was involved in the studio sessions which he did the arrangements for but Miles would often just ask him to hum bass lines and rhythms and then the musicians would then just take off. The arrangements he wrote were often used as a starting point which were then transformed until what was being played bore no resemblance to what he had written. This was in keeping with the Stockhausian approach that Buckmaster had been discussing with Miles in the weeks leading up to the session.

Buckmaster also played with Bowie and his band in the recordings for the original soundtrack to the science fiction film The Man Who Fell To Earth, in which David Bowie starred as Thomas Jerome Newton. Buckmaster himself told in the book 60 Years of Bowie that he had played cello on the original soundtrack recordings. Also Carlos Alomar, J. Peter Robinson and others were involved. Buckmaster: "There were a couple of medium tempo rock instrumental pieces, with simple motifs and rifly kind of grooves, with a line-up of David's rhythm section (Carlos Alomar et al.) plus J Peter Robinson on Fender Rhodes and me on cello and some synth overdubs, using ARP Odyssey and Solina. There was also a piece I wrote and performed using some beautifully made mbiras (African thumb pianos) I had purchased earlier that year, plus cello, all done by multiple overdubbing." Later film-director Nicholas Roeg decided not to use the recordings but existing songs as soundtrack for the movie.

In film, Buckmaster wrote some instrumental tracks for the 1974 Harry Nilsson film Son of Dracula, and composed the original score for Terry Gilliam's science fiction hit 12 Monkeys (Universal, 1995), which starred Bruce Willis, Madeleine Stowe and Brad Pitt.

Buckmaster won the 2002 Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s) for Drops of Jupiter.[2]

Selected discography[edit]

Year Artist Song Album Notes
2014 Hunter Hayes "...interlude" Storyline Arranger/Conductor
2014 Ferras feat. Katy Perry "Legends Never Die" Ferras Arranger/Conductor
2013 The Goo Goo Dolls "When The World Breaks Your Heart" Magnetic Arranger/Conductor
2012 Ben Folds Five "On Being Frank" The Sound of the Life of the Mind Arranger/Conductor
2010 Taylor Swift "Back To December"
Speak Now Arranger/Conductor
2009 Mika "I See You" The Boy Who Knew Too Much Arranger/Conductor
2008 Guns N' Roses "Street of Dreams"
"There Was A Time"
Chinese Democracy Arranger/Conductor
2007 The Bravery "The Ocean" The Sun and the Moon Arranger/Conductor
2007 Mika "Happy Ending" Life in Cartoon Motion Arranger/Conductor
2007 Katharine McPhee "Ordinary World" Katharine McPhee Arranger/Conductor
2007 Michael Buble' "Lost" Call Me Irresponsible Arranger/Conductor
2007 Mig Ayesa "Baby I Love Your Way"
"Kiss From a Rose"
"Who Wants to Live Forever"
"Can't Find My Home"
"Life on Mars"
"Wrapped Around Your Finger"
Mig Arranger/Conductor
2006 Ben Folds "Still" Over the Hedge (Soundtrack) Arranger/Conductor
2006 New Found Glory "When I Die"
Coming Home Arranger/Conductor
2006 Kenny Rogers "Water & Bridges"
"One Life"
Water & Bridges Arranger/Conductor
2006 Jesse McCartney "Invincible" Right Where You Want Me Arranger/Conductor
2006 Bianca Ryan "Awake" Bianca Ryan Arranger/Conductor
2005 Bon Jovi "Wildflower" Have a Nice Day Arranger/Conductor
2005 Carrie Underwood "Lessons Learned"
"Starts With Goodbye"
Some Hearts Arranger/Conductor
2005 Faith Hill "Paris" Fireflies Arranger/Conductor
2005 Ben Folds "Landed" Songs For Silverman Arranger/Conductor
2005 The Wallflowers "Beautiful Side of Somewhere" Rebel, Sweetheart Arranger/Conductor
2005 The Darkness "Seemed Like a Good Idea at the Time"
"Blind Man"
One Way Ticket to Hell... and Back Arranger/Conductor
2005 Nerina Pallot "Geek Love"
Fires Arranger/Conductor
2004 Keith Urban "Tonight I Wanna Cry"
"She's Gotta Be"
Be Here Arranger/Conductor
2004 Tears for Fears "Secret World" Everybody Loves a Happy Ending Arranger/Conductor
2004 Third Day "Wire"
"It's a Shame"
Wire Arranger/Conductor
2003 Train "Lincoln Avenue"
"Your Every Color"
My Private Nation Arranger/Conductor
2003 The Thorns "No Blue Sky" The Thorns Arranger/Conductor
2003 Something Corporate "The Runaway"
"Me and the Moon"
North Arranger/Conductor/Performer
2003 Beth Hart "I'll Stay With You" Leave the Light On Arranger/Conductor
2003 Luis Miguel "Nos Hizo Falta Tiempo" 33 Arranger/Conductor
2003 Live "Run Away" Birds of Pray Arranger/Conductor
2003 Wilshire "In Your Arms"
New Universe Arranger/Conductor
2002 Faith Hill "You're Still Here"
"Safest Place to Hide"
Cry Arranger/Conductor
2002 Tim McGraw "She's My Kind of Rain" Tim McGraw and the Dancehall Doctors Arranger/Conductor
2002 Something Corporate Leaving Through the Window Arranger/Conductor
2001 Train "Drops of Jupiter" Drops of Jupiter Arranger/Conductor
2002 Grammy Winner
Arrangement of the Year
2001 Elton John "This Train Don't Stop There Anymore"
"Original Sin"
"Ballad of the Boy in the Red Shoes"
"Emperor's New Clothes"
Songs from the West Coast Arranger/Conductor
2000 No Doubt "Too Late (Reprise)" (Hidden instrumental track) Return of Saturn Arranger/Conductor
1999 Julio Iglesias Jr Under My Eyes Arranger/Conductor
1999 Tal Bachman "Beside You"
"You're My Everything"
Tal Bachman Arranger/Conductor
1999 Lara Fabian "Sola Otra Vez" Lara Fabian Arranger
1998 Des'ree "Time" Supernatural Arranger/Conductor
1997 Collective Soul "She Said" Scream 2 Soundtrack Arranger/Conductor/Co-composer
1996 Counting Crows "Daylight Fading"
"I'm Not Sleeping"
"Another Horsedreamer's Blues"
Recovering the Satellites Arranger/Conductor
1996 Celine Dion "Falling into You" Falling into You Arranger/Conductor
1995 Elton John "Believe"
Made in England Composer/Arranger/Conductor
1993 Dwight Yoakam "Ain't That Lonely Yet"
"Try Not to Look So Pretty"
This Time Arranger/Conductor
1994 Grammy Winner
Best Male Country Vocal Performance
1992 Lionel Richie "My Destiny"
"Love, Oh Love"
Back to Front Arranger/Conductor
1991 Kenny Loggins "Cody's Song"
"Too Early for the Sun"
Leap of Faith Arranger/Conductor
1991 Lloyd Cole Don't Get Weird on Me Babe Arranger/Conductor
1985 Mick Jagger "Hard Woman" She's the Boss Arranger/Conductor
1983 Nick Heyward North of a Miracle Arranger[3]
1983 Stevie Nicks "Beauty and the Beast" The Wild Heart Arranger/Conductor
1978 Elton John A Single Man Arranger/Conductor
1977 Grateful Dead Terrapin Station Arranger/Conductor entire Side Two of Album
1976 Elton John Blue Moves Arranger/Conductor
1974 Miles Davis "Ife" Big Fun Arranger/Conductor
1974 Carly Simon "Haven't Got Time for the Pain" Hotcakes Arranger/Conductor
1973 Elton John "Have Mercy on the Criminal"
"Blues for My Baby and Me"
Don't Shoot Me I'm Only the Piano Player Arranger/Conductor
1973 Shawn Phillips "Lady of the Blue Rose" Bright White Arranger/Conductor
1973 Blood, Sweat & Tears No Sweat Arranger/Conductor
1972 Miles Davis On the Corner Arranger/Conductor
1972 Carly Simon "You're So Vain" No Secrets Arranger/Conductor
1971 Elton John "Tiny Dancer"
Madman Across The Water Arranger/Conductor/Musical Director (Full Album)
1971 Rolling Stones "Moonlight Mile"
Sticky Fingers Arranger/Conductor
1971 Leonard Cohen Songs of Love and Hate Arranger/Conductor
1971 Harry Nilsson "Without You" Nilsson Schmilsson Arranger/Conductor
1971 Elton John

"Variations on "Friends" Theme"
"Variations on Michelle's Song"
"I Mean To Do My Work Today"
"Four Moods"

Friends Arranger/Conductor/Musical Director (Full Album)
1970 Elton John Tumbleweed Connection Arranger/Conductor/Musical Director (Full Album)
1970 Elton John "Your Song"
"Border Song"
"The Greatest Discovery" (cello Intro)
Elton John Arranger/Conductor/Musical Director (Full Album)
1970 Mick Farren "Mona, The Whole Trip" Mona – The Carnivorous Circus Solo cello
1969 David Bowie "Space Oddity"
"Wild Eyed Boy from Freecloud"
Space Oddity Arranger/Cellist/Conductor


  1. ^ Eder, Bruce. "Paul Buckmaster: Biography". Allmusic. Retrieved 2010-03-14. 
  2. ^ "Drops of Jupiter > Charts & Awards > GRAMMY Awards". Allmusic. Retrieved 2010-03-14. 
  3. ^ "North of a Miracle – Nick Heyward". Allmusic. Retrieved 2015-06-29. 

External links[edit]