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Hans Zimmer, rock star / The Atlantic

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Like many other late-night hosts, Stephen Colbert introduces the musical acts that close out his show while holding their CD in his hands. His recent guests have included Japandroids, A$AP Mob, and Billy Joel, but Tuesday's episode was a bit different: The album Colbert was promoting was the soundtrack to Planet Earth II (the much-anticipated BBC America nature documentary series), and the act was the composer Hans Zimmer, jamming on the synthesizer as the orchestra behind him played the program's theme music. For a film composer to appear on a talk show is practically unheard of. But this is Zimmer, who's about to embark on a national tour that will include performances at Coachella, the California music festival being headlined this year by Radiohead, Beyoncé, and Kendrick Lamar.

Sony Classical recently released a brand-new album that showcases some of Hollywood's greatest ever movie themes, written by Zimmer. This vivid collection of back-to-back blockbuster hits brings together for the first time the composer's unmistakeable movie themes, re-imagined and in arrangements especially written for some of our top musicians including superstar pianist, Lang Lang; cello wizards, 2CELLOS and Tina Guo; outstanding violinists, Maxim Vengerov and Lindsey Stirling; Classic BRIT Award-winning saxophonist, Amy Dickson; internet sensations, The Piano Guys and with stupendous vocals by Leona Lewis.