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Composer Nick Perito dead at 81

Aug. 16, 2005 at 1:20 PM

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 16 (UPI) -- Emmy-nominated composer and arranger Nick Perito has died of pulmonary fibrosis at age 81.

Perito, best known for his work with crooner Perry Como, died Aug. 3 at the Motion Picture and Television Fund Country House in Woodland Hills, Calif., the Los Angeles Times reported.

Perito joined Como as "The Perry Como Show" was ending in 1963 and remained his music director for tours, recording and TV specials, the Times said.

Perito also did the music for TV specials starring Andy Williams, Bing Crosby and Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme and appeared on many big recording sessions of the times. He handled the music for the televised Kennedy Center Honors in the 1980s and early '90s as well.

He was nominated for more than a dozen Emmys.

Perito is survived by his wife of 56 years, a daughter and two sons.

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