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Harry Moses Simeone (May 9, 1911 – February 22, 2005) was an American music arranger, conductor, and composer who popularized the Christmas song "The Little Drummer Boy", for which he received co-writing credit.
Simeone was born in Newark, New Jersey, United States. He grew up listening to stars performing at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City, not far from his native Newark. Initiated and inspired by this childhood passion, he sought a career as a concert pianist. To this end, he enrolled in the Juilliard School of Music, which he attended for three years, but when he was offered work at CBS as an arranger for bandleader Fred Waring, he dropped out of Juilliard to accept it.
At CBS, Simeone worked as an arranger and musical director for Waring's radio and television programs. He also began composing and arranging music for films and television shows. In 1958, he founded the Harry Simeone Chorale, a choir of 25 singers that specialized in performing a cappella Christmas music. The choir's first album, Sing We Now of Christmas, was a huge success, and it launched Simeone's career as a popular Christmas music composer and arranger.
The Harry Simeone Chorale went on to record over 50 albums, and their music has been featured in numerous films and television shows. Simeone himself wrote or co-wrote many of the choir's most popular songs, including "The Little Drummer Boy", "O Holy Night", and "Silent Night".
Simeone was a prolific composer and arranger, and his music has been performed by some of the world's leadingchoirs and orchestras. He was also a respected educator, and he taught music at Juilliard and other universities.
Simeone died in New York City in 2005 at the age of 93. He was a major figure in the field of Christmas music, and his music continues to be enjoyed by millions of people around the world.