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A look at the life and career of legendary composer Burt Bacharach


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Geoff Bennett: Popular composer Burt Bacharach, who won six Grammys and three Oscars, has died of natural causes.

Jeffrey Brown has a look at the hitmaker known for melodies such as "Walk On By," "I Say a Little Prayer," and dozens of others.

Jeffrey Brown: Burt Bacharach was best known for a string of hit songs he composed in the 1960s mainly for singer Dionne Warwick, often written with his longtime collaborator Hal David.

It was a signature romantic sound mixing orchestration with pop hooks, and his music was everywhere. Featured in the 1967 James Bond film "Casino Royale," a number one hit in 1968 with Herb Alpert, "This Guy's in Love With You," the score and hit song from the film "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid," which brought Bacharach an Oscar, and a Broadway success with "Promises, Promises."

Bacharach himself became a celebrity, including through his marriage to film and TV star Angie Dickinson, one of his four marriages. Years later, he even played himself in the "Austin Powers" Bond spoof films.

The post-'60s and '70s years found Bacharach experiencing a number of ups and downs, but he continued turning out music, while also gaining a new following among a younger generation of rock and pop musicians, notably including a long songwriting and performing collaboration with Elvis Costello. A box set of their recordings over three decades is due out next month.

In 2012, Bacharach and Hal David were honored by the Library of Congress with the Gershwin Prize for Popular Song, where legends like Stevie Wonder performed some of their biggest hits. Burt Bacharach continued to work into his 90s. He died yesterday at his home in Los Angeles at 94.

For the "PBS NewsHour," I'm Jeffrey Brown.

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