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Robert F. (Bob) Bain


1924 - 2018 Obituary Condolences
Robert F. (Bob) Bain Obituary
January 26, 1924 - June 21, 2018 Noted studio guitarist Bob Bain died of heart failure at his beachfront home in Oxnard on June 21. He was 94. For 22 years, Bain was the principal guitarist for Doc Severinsen's Tonight Show Band and played on countless television shows and film scores during his seven-decade career. Among the many artists he recorded with were Frank Sinatra, Rosemary Clooney, Ray Charles, Quincy Jones, Linda Ronstadt, Ella Fitzgerald, Tommy Dorsey and Nat Cole. But Bain was perhaps best known for playing the timeless guitar riff for Henry Mancini's "Peter Gunn Theme." In addition, he was the featured guitarist for 'The Magnificent Seven,' 'MASH,' 'The Rockford Files,' 'The Pink Panther,' 'Mr. Lucky' and hundreds of other film and TV productions. Bain was born in Chicago, Illinois, and began his long and legendary music career with Joe Wolverton's Trio after his high school graduation in California. At age 19, Bain joined a USO tour that took him to New York, Europe and Africa. On his return he played with Andre Previn's Trio in Hollywood and in 1944 joined the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra. It was with Dorsey's band that he played on 'Thrill of a Romance,' his first of a multitude of movie scores. It was a harbinger of a studio career unequaled by few, if any guitar players. In addition to his being the guitarist on Frank Sinatra's most famous recordings, film buffs know Bain for accompanying Audrey Hepburn's singing of "Moon River" in 'Breakfast at Tiffany's.' Bain was predeceased by his first wife Helen Jean Bain, née Meyer, in 1960 and his second wife Judith Ann Bain, née Clark, in 2005. He is survived by his daughters Cris A. Bain-Borrego, Sunny A. Bain and respective sons-in-law Francisco (Quique) Borrego and Brian Engebretsen, and four grandchildren: Julian and Lara Borrego and Heath and Dustin Engebretsen. Bain is also survived by his beloved longtime partner Ruth Crooker. In lieu of flowers please send contributions to Friends & Patrons of the L.A. Philharmonic or the Harbor & Beach Community of Oxnard. A tribute and celebration of Bob Bain's life will be held at the Sportsmen's Lodge Events Center, 12833 Ventura Blvd., Studio City, on Sunday, August 19th at four p.m.
Published in the Los Angeles Times from Aug. 11 to Aug. 12, 2018
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