Alfred Newman (1901-1970) was the most influential and respected composer and music director in Hollywood. The first-born of ten children to an impoverished produce seller in New Haven, Newman manifested his musical interests very early, and by the age of eight was well-known locally as a piano prodigy. He played for virtuoso Jan Ignace Paderewski, who arranged a New York recital for the boy, and a performing career seemed in the offing, until he was forced to begin earning a living for his family. Newman worked his way up from vaudeville to the orchestra pit of the Broadway theaters, and eventually became an established conductor and arranger known and respected by all of the best composers.
How the West was won is a family saga covering several decades of Westward expansion in the nineteenth century - including the Gold Rush, the Civil War, and the building of the railroads.
Westerns do not come any bigger than How the West was won, nor do movie scores come any grander, lovelier, or more memorable than its soundtrack.