Last Wednesday night, I found out that my longtime friend Beth Krakower died after her valiant battle with breast cancer. We had known each other nearly 20 years, and while our contact initially sprung from her work as a publicist for film composers, it evolved into a more meaningful friendship. She was a great person and role model: smart, hard-working, energetic, and also caring and giving. Beth also had a great sense of humor. While occasionally we worked on a story together — and, among other things, she helped me land my first major liner notes gig with Sony Legacy a little over 15 years ago — we often just talked on the phone or in person about life and music. (We were both metalheads.) Sometimes a few months would fly by, but we always stayed in touch, even after she moved out to L.A., expanded her publicity enterprise, and rightfully became a major player there. She connected me to the talented Bear McCreary, and to a man who would turn out to be one of my best friends, Richard Torres.
The photo above was taken in February 2015, the last time that I saw Beth in person. I took her to Guido’s in West L.A. to thank her for letting me stay at her place during one of my many visits to that city. I’ll always think of her when I dine at that Italian place. I missed her on my trip to L.A. this past March, which I regret. I had a crazy schedule and she did too as she was getting back into her work groove after winning her first battle with breast cancer. I did not know there would be another.
The video below is from her memorial service at the Harmony Gold Theater in Los Angeles this past Tuesday. Close friends and many film composers whom she worked with (including Craig Safan, Cliff Martinez, Tyler Bates, and Bear McCreary) offered their eulogies and many performed music in her honor. (You can see the breakdown of the speeches and performances below.) It is clear that Beth’s zeal for her job, passion for film music, and love and compassion for her friends and associates touched everyone she knew. You can learn more about her here. The fact that the service was so well attended, and that so many people put such effort into expressing themselves verbally and musically in her honor, shows how much she meant to them.
Beth, I will miss you terribly. I love you and wish you were still here. Thank you for being in my life. Rest in peace.