One of the most popular and successful young British composers, David Arnold was born in Luton, England and now lives and works in London. Having spent much of his youth playing in school bands, orchestras, nightclubs, pubs and concert halls, playing clarinet, guitar and keyboards, David's interests began to move away from writing and performing, to writing, arranging and producing. Growing up in Luton, an industrial town about 30 miles north of London, he met a fellow film enthusiast, Danny Cannon and together they decided to make films.
In a few years, they had made numerous short films and Danny proceeded to attend Englands prestigious National Film and Television School, where David continued to score the student films Danny made. Their graduation film‚ ‘Strangers’, attracted much interest from the professional film community. David had written, orchestrated and conducted the score the same way he had done for 23 other short films he had written for over the previous two or three years, finding his way through the process by doing, rather than by being taught. It was the interest in ‘Strangers’ he had done for 23 other short films he had written for over the previous two or three years, finding his way through the process by doing, rather than by being taught. It was the interest in ‘Strangers’ that enabled Danny to land his first professional directing job, “The Young Americans”, starring Harvey Keitel and Viggo Mortensen. Danny convinced the producers to let David score the movie, and with a small budget and 1 day of recording time, the score to “The Young Americans” was created. For the end credits of the movie, David enlisted Icelandic singer Bjork to cowrite and sing ‘Play Dead’. Hailed by the NME and Melody Maker as their ‘single of the week’, Play Dead garnered sales and critical appreciation in equal measures. Time Out’s review of Arnold’s score for The Young Americans included the comment; “At last! This is what music soundtracks should sound like”. It was soon after that Roland Emmerich and Dean Devlin, who were writing and producing the sci-fi epic “Stargate”, heard some music from “The Young Americans” and offered David the chance to score their movie. The success of the film and the music announced David on the world stage as a contemporary film composer with style, wit, versatility and an unabashed love of both the lush, romantic, ridiculous, energetic and thrilling.
Since then David Arnold has become one of the British film industry’s most talented and respected players, switching seamlessly from the orchestral grandeur on movies such as Stargate (1994), Independence Day (1996) — for which he received a Grammy award , to more scaled down urban grooves and beats on films such as Shaft (2000), Enough, Changing Lanes (2002) and 2 Fast 2 Furious (2003).
Also, and perhaps more significantly, David Arnold is the man who has succesfully taken over from John Barry as the composer for the world famous James Bond movies, having written the music for Tomorrow Never Dies (1997) The World is Not Enough (1999) and Die Another Day (2002). Away from the film world, David Arnold maintains a career as a successful record producer and songwriter, having worked with a wide range of contemporary artists including KD Lang, Pulp, Chrissie Hynde, Iggy Pop, Garbage, David McAlmont, Martina Topley-Bird, Natasha Bedingfield‚ Aimee Mann, George Michael and Damien Rice.