Tommy Tallarico

From Sega Retro

Tommy Tallarico.jpeg
Tommy Tallarico
Place of birth: Springfield, Massachusetts, United States
Date of birth: 1968-02-18 (age 56)
Employment history:
Role(s): Composer, Musician, Guitarist

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Tommy Tallarico is an American musician and video game music composer. Well known for soundtracks to games like Earthworm Jim and The Terminator (Mega-CD), Tallarico’s music was considered exceptionally well-composed for the era, and the positive reception of his work led to the creation of his own company, Tommy Tallarico Studios.

Early life

Tallarico was born in Springfield, Massachusetts on February 18, 1968. He spent much of his youth around music; his parents took him to see the Springfield Symphony when he was 9 years old, and he taught himself to play piano and guitar only a year later. Tallarico cites the scores for Star Wars and Rocky as inspirations, and later classical music. Tallarico was also inspired by his cousin Steven Tyler of the band Aerosmith. Tallarico would attend his cousin's concerts as a child, and grew a desire to become a music performer.[1]

Ever since childhood, video games have been an important part of Tallarico’s life. He and his father often played Asteroids and Space Invaders, and the young Tallarico would take his father's tape recorder to the arcade to record their soundtracks. Later he would play guitar over the result for his neighborhood friends.[2]

Tallarico attended Cathedral High School, and later Western New England University for a year. However at 21, Tallarico went to California to try and obtain a job in the video game industry. Unfortunately, circumstances didn’t work in Tallarico’s favor and led to him being homeless and living under a pier. Tallarico was able to acquire a job as a keyboard salesman at a Guitar Center in Santa Ana, California. On his first day of work, Tallarico’s TurboGrafx-16 was noticed by an employee of a newly-founded video game company, Virgin Mastertronic, and he was subsequently offered a job as their first play tester.[1]


Virgin Interactive

Tommy Tallarico Studios

Founded in 1994.

Video Games Live

Industry work

In 2002 he founded the Game Audio Network Guild, and currently serves as its president. He wrote and co-produced the television programs The Electric Playground and Reviews on the Run and hosted both shows alongside Victor Lucas.

He and Victor Lucas also act as video game correspondents for HypaSpace Weekly. Tallarico is the cousin of Steven Tyler, the lead singer of Aerosmith.

Production history



Song credits

Main article: Tommy Tallarico/Song credits.

Cool Spot (Mega Drive version)

  • Wipeout Tune — Arrangement
  • Beach Music — Music & Arrangement
  • Jazzy Tune — Music & Arrangement
  • Wall Tune — Music & Arrangement
  • Groovie Tune — Music & Arrangement
  • Play Da Blues — Music & Arrangement
  • Western Tune — Music & Arrangement
  • Parade Tune — Music & Arrangement
  • Rave Dancetune — Music & Arrangement
  • Flag Rising — Arrangement
  • 7 Cool Points — Music & Arrangement
  • Replenish — Music & Arrangement
  • 1-Up — Music & Arrangement
  • Getting Letter — Music & Arrangement
  • Spot Fall Over — Music & Arrangement
  • Game Over Tune — Music & Arrangement

Sonic and the Black Knight

  • Molten Mine — Music, Programming
  • Great Megalith — Music & Arrangement, Programming
  • The Cauldron — Music, Programming