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Randy Newman

Randy Newman (born November 28, 1943) is an American singer and songwriter. Though he has released several hit singles, his primary influence is in his songwriting and his work on film scores, including Ragtime and The Natural[?], as well as scoring all the Disney-Pixar films to date, including Toy Story, A Bug's Life[?] and Monsters, Inc[?].

Newman had become a professional songwriter by the time he was seventeen, and landed a contract as a singer with Reprise Records. His debut album, Randy Newman[?], was unsuccessful for its 1968 release (see 1968 in music). However, artists including Dusty Springfield and Peggy Lee covered his songs. In 1970, Harry Nilsson recorded an album of Newman compositions called Nilsson Sings Newman[?]. That album was a success, and it paved the way for Newman's 1970 release, 12 Songs. 12 Songs was critically acclaimed, but sales were slow. 1972's Sail Away[?] became a moderate hit, as was Good Old Boys[?] (1974), a concept album that became a well known due to a controversy about the song "Rednecks", which many felt mocked Southern American heritage. Similarly, 1977's "Short People" earned Newman the enmity of several little person activist groups, even though it is in fact a satire on racism.

Newman's work as a film composer began in 1981, with Ragtime. For this, he was nominated for two Academy Awards. His 1983 album Trouble in Paradise received greater critical acclaim than most of his recent work, and included the hit single "I Love L.A.". Though the song was meant to mock yuppie culture, the irony was lost on many of Newman's listeners.

In the 1990s, Newman adapted Dr. Faust[?] into a concept album and musical. He was again nominated for an Academy Award for his work on "You've Got a Friend" for Toy Story. His latest album is Bad Love[?] in 1999.

Newman has the dubious distinction of receiving the most Oscar nominations[?] without a single win (15). His streak was broken when he received the Best Song Oscar for the Monsters Inc. song "If I Didn't Have You".

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