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Award-winning composer Richard Joseph passes away

Mon 05 Mar 2007 12:47pm GMT / 7:47am EST / 4:47am PST

Richard Joseph, one of the most prominent figures in videogame music in the 80s and 90s and an award-winning pioneer of the medium, has died of lung cancer.

Joseph was diagnosed with the disease earlier this year and had been undergoing chemotherapy, but died after slipping into a coma on Sunday morning.

His career spanned over two decades of videogame music, and he is widely credited with major innovations in the medium - including the introduction of true voice acting in his work on Mega Lo Mania, the first use of interactive music in the Bitmap Brothers' Chaos Engine and multiple collaborations with well-known recording artists, including Queen's Brian May and Ultravox' John Foxx.

Joseph's later work also won him significant professional recognition, and in 2000 his work on the audio for Theme Park World helped Electronic Arts to win a BAFTA award for Best Audio for the game. In the same year, his soundtrack for Cannon Fodder GBA was also nominated for an award - as were the soundtracks he subsequently produced (with composer James Hannigan) for Elixir Studios' Republic: The Revolution and Evil Genius.

In recent years Joseph had moved to the south of France, where he ran a studio specialising in soundtracks using next-generation audio technology, SoundTropez.

As well as being a hugely influential pioneer in the game audio space, Joseph was also an amiable figure who was well-liked and much respected among fans of classic game soundtracks - with his work on games by the Bitmap Brothers and Sensible Software, in particular, being considered to be among the finest game audio of the time.

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