Barry De Vorzon (born in 1934) and Perry Botkin Jr. (born in 1933) are American composers and producers, both originating from New York. Their biggest hit together was their composition of the theme music for the TV soap opera The Young And The Restless, later known as “Nadia’s Theme” during the 70s music era. “Nadia’s Theme” also won them an Academy Award in 1978 for “Best Instrumental Arrangement.” Also in 1977 the pair also had a minor hit single “Bless The Beasts and The Children,” which was their own composition as well as their instrumental rendition of the Carpenters’ 1971 original recording. Together they also wrote the theme music to the 1970 drama movie R.P.M. De Vorzon and Botkin are also considerably successful in their own separate music careers.
About Barry de Vorzon & Perry Botkin Jr. — their own lives and musical pursuits
Singer, songwriter, film music composer and music producer Barry DeVorzon was born in New York City, New York on July 31, 1934. Among his songwriting credits were his composition “Dreamin’,” which became a hit for Johnny Burnette in 1960, as well as hits for Johnny’s brother, singer Dorsey Burnette, who wrote the following songs with De Vorzon: “Big Rock Candy Mountain,” “Hey Little One,” “Noah’s Ark” and “Red Roses”). He was also responsible for creating the theme music to the TV series S.W.A.T.
De Vorzon had also been the frontman of the California doo-wop trio Barry and the Tamerlanes, whose single “I Wonder What’s She’s Doing Tonight” became a Top 40 pop hit in 1963. It was released on his own label, Valiant, which he established in 1960. As
Perry Botkin was born on April 16, 1933, in New York, New York, the son of a composer. Aside from being a composer himself and as well as producer, Botkin is also a musician and arranger, having worked with stars Bobby Darin, The Lettermen and Harry Nilsson, among others.
De Vorzon and Botkin’s hit “Nadia’s Theme”
De Vorzon and Botkin first partnered together to compose the soundtrack for the 1971 movie Bless the Beasts and the Children. One of the pieces they wrote was the main song title, which was recorded by the Carpenters. The song was nominated for a Grammy in 1972, but it lost to Isaac Hayes’ “Theme from Shaft.”
Another piece the duo composed for Bless the Beasts and the Children film was originally titled as “Cotton’s Dream.” However, it was re-titled as “Nadia’s Theme” as the sports program Wide World of Sports broadcast a montage of Romanian gymnast Nadia Comaneci doing her routines during the 1976 Olympics in Montreal, with that music on the background (Comaneci herself, though, never used the song in any of her floor exercises). Since the song was heard on the television, viewers began to flood the producers with requests.
Botkin himself re-arranged “Nadia’s Theme” specifically for the Young and the Restless. The theme music, released on A&M Records, became a chart success in 1976, peaking at #8 on the Billboard Hot 100 and the Billboard’s adult contemporary charts apiece. “Nadia’s Theme” stayed on the Hot 100 for a total of 22 weeks. The single’s album, Nadia’s Theme (The Young and the Restless), peaked at #42 on the Billboard 200 chart.
“Nadia’s Theme” also won the Grammy for Best Instrumental Arrangement in 1978. It has now become an oldies classic tune and one of the easy listening favorites.
De Vorzon and Botkin released their own renditon of “Bless the Beasts and the Children” in 1977, from the same album. It became a minor pop hit at #82 and #24 adult contemporary.
De Vorzon continued to compose songs, such as “It’s Christmas Once Again in Santa Barbara.” The song has since been re-recorded, replacing the original “Santa Barbara” with other city names. He also developed a software called MasterWriter, which is designed and intended for composers and lyricists.
Botkin, on the other hand, eventually retired from doing commercial music in 1990. Afterwards he started to produce and release CD’s of mostly electronic music.
- Wikipedia bio of Barry De Vorzon
- Wikipedia bio of Perry Botkin Jr.
- Barry de Vorzon’s discography on Discogs
- Perry Botkin’s discography on Discogs
- The Carpenter’s “Bless the Beasts and the Children” lyrics