Perry Botkin Jr., Composer Behind The Young and the Restless Theme, Dead at 87

Grammy-winning TV and film composer Perry Botkin Jr. has died. He was 87.

The music maker died on Monday, his longtime friend John Scheinfeld (writer of The Happy Days of Garry Marshall) confirmed on Facebook.

"Today I share the news that the man who discovered Harry [Nilsson] and signed him to his first publishing contract, a gentleman and gentle-man named Perry Botkin, passed away," he wrote. "Perry was a magnificently talented composer, arranger, producer and storyteller, perhaps best known for composing the Grammy-winning 'Nadia's Theme' for the CBS soap The Young and the Restless."

The arranger died at Providence Saint Joseph Medical Center in Burbank, California. His cause of death has not been revealed. A rep for Botkin Jr. could not be reached.

Botkin Jr. created "Nadia's Theme" alongside Barry De Vorzon in the '70s. The iconic tune, which earned them a Grammy Award for best instrumental arrangement in 1977, was on the Billboard Hot 100 chart for 19 weeks. The Young and the Restless' theme was given its name after being featured in ABC's Wide World of Sports' montage that highlighted Russian Olympic medalist Nadia Comănec for the 1976 Summer Olympics.

In 1971, Botkin Jr. and De Vorzon's album, Bless the Beasts and Children, earned them a Grammy nod for best original score written for a motion picture or TV special.

Botkin Jr. was also behind popular theme songs for '70s sitcom Mork & Mindy and The ABC Sunday Night Movie weekly program. Throughout his decades-long career, Botkin Jr. composed several recognizable commercial tunes for brands including American Airlines, Baskin-Robbins, Busch Light Beer, Chevron and Mattel.

Though he was born in New York on April 16, 1933, the hitmaker was raised in Los Angeles after his family moved to The City of Angels soon after his birth. Botkin Jr. began developing his musical abilities in high school, where he played the trombone as part of a student jazz quartet (which also included composer John Williams, who played piano for the group).

He completed the film scoring program at the University of Southern California's Thornton School of Music. He is the son of Perry Botkin, a successful jazz guitarist, banjoist and composer.

Botkin Jr. is survived by his wife Liza, son David and grandson Daniel Tyler Botkin.

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