Barry Gray was one of the earliest composers in film and television to utilize electronic instrumentation in his scoring. Born in Lancashire and educated at the Royal Manchester College of Music, he began his musical career writing arrangements, principally of theater music, for a London publisher. After six years' service in the Royal Air Force during World War II, he resumed his career as an arranger, conductor, and composer on radio, and as an arranger and accompanist for various performing artists, most notably Vera Lynn, Hoagy Carmichael, and Eartha Kitt. Lynn was the artist with whom he was associated the longest, for ten years, from 1949 until 1959. During the early 1950s, Gray began experimenting with new recording methods, growing out of the advent of magnetic recording tape as a viable medium, and he founded his own studio in London, where he cut music for radio commercials and some of Vera Lynn's material, as well as tried out new sounds from the embryonic field of electronic music. Gray became a television composer in the mid-1950s when he was engaged, initially as an arranger and conductor, by AP Films, a small studio owned by Gerry Anderson, on a program called The Adventures of Twizzle, created by Roberta Leigh. This led to his becoming the composer of the music for such subsequent children's television series as Supercar, Fireball XL5, Stingray, Thunderbirds, and Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons, all of which were built around marionettes as characters, and all produced by Anderson and his expanded company, rechristened Century 21. Gray's music was rousing, expansive, and amazingly catchy, particularly his main title themes, which were among the most distinctive musical material of early-1960s television. Thunderbirds was sufficiently successful to generate two theatrical feature films, and also yielded a hit main title theme for Gray. All of Gray's music for these programs utilized such early electronic instruments as the Ondes Martenot and the Miller Spinetta, and he later added various electric organs, synthesizers, and oscillators to his array of instruments, as well as orchestras of up to 70 players. By the mid-1960s, thanks to his television work, Gray was sufficiently recognized by the British film industry to be engaged to provide special electronic music for such features as Dr. Who and the Daleks, Fahrenheit 451, and Island of Terror. His main creative association, however, was with producer Gerry Anderson, and one of the scores of which he was proudest was his music for Anderson's production of Journey to the Far Side of the Sun. He also provided the music for the series UFO and Space: 1999, before retiring in the mid-1970s. At the end of that decade, however, Gray re-emerged to add new musical material to videotape compilations of episodes of the children's series that he'd worked on in the early 1960s, and occasionally to conduct suites of his best film and television work.