Saturday, September 26, 2020

Who Are Those Composers ~ Eric Rogers


Eric Rogers was born Eric Gaukroger on September 24, 1921. He was the brother of lyricist Alan Rogers.

Eric moved with his parents from Halifax, England to Morriston, Wales when he was three. He was interested in music from an early age, and during his attendance at church as a child, he was taught to play the church organ. His musical apprenticeship was generally untutored and he found himself playing the piano during the Second World War for free beer. 

After World War II, he formed his own orchestra, playing in the Orchid Room at London's Trocadero. He orchestrated the original stage production of Oliver!, first performed at the New Theatre, London on 30 June 1960.

As his reputation grew, he was offered many conducting jobs for films. Most notably, he composed the music for 22 Carry On films. He also conducted the music for the first James Bond film “Dr. No” under the name Eric Rogers. He would later go on to compose many film scores himself, most notably “Carry On Cabby” in 1963, “Carry On Matron” in 1972 and a hoard of other Carry On films. His final Carry On score was for “Carry On Emmanuelle” in 1978.  

Rogers immigrated to America in 1975, after working intermittently in England and America from 1970, and became in demand for composing various film and TV series. By this point he had struck up an alliance with DePatie and Freleng productions, who were at the time making a number of animated series for children, such as “Return to the Planet of the Apes” and “What's New Mr. Magoo?”. He worked for the company for four years, conducting scores for “What's New Mr. Magoo?” and “Pink Panther in a Pink Christmas”, and providing scores for “Return to the Planet of the Apes” and ‘Spider-Woman’ (TV series), for which he composed and conducted the theme and all the incidental music. He also conducted Dean Elliott's score for ‘The New Fantastic Four’ animated series in 1978. In 1981, he conducted the music for ‘Dennis the Menace in Mayday for Mother’.

Rogers was married to a Bluebell girl, with whom he had two sons.

Rogers died on April 8, 1981 in Chalfont St. Peter, Buckinghamshire. He was only 59.His death was registered under the name Eric Gauk-Roger.


ROGERS, Eric (aka Eric Gauk-Roger, Eric Rodgers) (Eric Gakkroger) [9/25/1921, Halifax, Yorkshire, England, U.K. – 4/8/1981, Chalfont St. Peter, Buckinghamshire, England, U.K.] – composer, conductor, arranger, songwriter, actor, brother of songwriter, Alan Rogers (Alan Gakkroger)  [19??-2000], married to ? father of two sons.

Carry on Cowboy – 1965

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