Stu Phillips (composer)

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Stu Phillips
Stu Phillips 2007.jpg
Phillips in 2007
Background information
Birth name Stuart Phillips
Born (1929-09-09) September 9, 1929 (age 87)[1]
Genres classical
film scores
television scores
Occupation(s) arranger
record producer
Years active 1958–present
Labels Colpix Records,
Capitol Records (w/ Hollyridge Strings) (1958-unknown)

Stuart Phillips (born September 9, 1929[1]) is an American composer of film scores and television-series theme music, conductor and record producer. He is perhaps best known for composing the themes to the television series Knight Rider and Battlestar Galactica.



Phillips studied music at The High School of Music & Art in New York City, New York, and at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York. While at Eastman, he began arranging music for the Rochester Civic Orchestra.[2]

In 1958, Phillips began composing television and film scores. One of his first scores was for Columbia's 1964 movie, Ride the Wild Surf. He also founded Colpix Records and produced hits for Nina Simone, The Skyliners and Shelley Fabares, (pronounced 'fab bray'). Stu Phillips produced "Johnny Angel" for Shelly Fabares, who played the teen-age daughter on The Donna Reed Show. According to Joel Whitburn's 'Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits' "Johnny Angel" was released March 17, 1962 and was a #1 hit from April 7 - 20, 1962 staying on the charts for 13 weeks. There was also a follow-up hit to "Johnny Angel" called "Johnny Loves Me" which also made the Top 40 (#21) in July of '62.

In the mid-1960s, he worked for Capitol Records and created, produced and arranged for the Hollyridge Strings.[2]

In the late 1960s and early 1970s, Phillips continued scoring films and television series including music for the films Beyond the Valley of the Dolls (1970), The Seven Minutes (1971) and the television series The Monkees and Get Christie Love!.

In 1974, he began working at Universal Studios scoring television series; Glen Larson made extensive use of his compositions. During this time, he scored music for the television series The Six Million Dollar Man, McCloud, and Battlestar Galactica.[2] His Battlestar Galactica theme was featured prominently in the film Airplane II: The Sequel (1980). He also composed music for the television series The Amazing Spider-Man (which was for Charles Fries/Dan Goodman/Danchuck Productions) during this time.

In the 1980s, Phillips left Universal and began working at 20th Century Fox, again being a favorite composer of Glen Larson, where he composed music for the television series The Fall Guy and Automan.[2] Both programs were Larson productions.

Later years[edit]

Phillips went into semi-retirement in the 1990s. Since that time, he has appeared at fan conventions for Battlestar Galactica and has attended cult-film screenings for Beyond the Valley of the Dolls.[2]

In 2002, Phillips published his autobiography Stu Who?: Forty Years of Navigating the Minefields of the Music Business.

In 2006, he also participated in a documentary film featured on the special edition DVD re-release of Beyond the Valley of the Dolls.[3]

Long a "serious" musician, Phillips has also orchestrated pieces by Ludwig van Beethoven and Sergei Rachmaninoff for symphony orchestra.[2]

Phillips can be heard on discussing the history of The Hollyridge Strings's Christmas album, which it released in 2008.


Film music[edit]

Television music[edit]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Grammy Award

BMI Film & TV Awards

Further reading[edit]


  1. ^ a b Stu Phillips at the Notable Names Database (
  2. ^ a b c d e f Stu Phillips official biography at
  3. ^ The Beyond the Valley of the Dolls special-edition DVD features Look on up at the Bottom: The Music of the Dolls. USA: 20th Century Fox.

External links[edit]