Benjamin Wynn is an American composer, sound designer and music producer mostly known for creating the sound design for the TV series, Avatar: The Last Airbender. He has collaborated with composers such as Joby Talbot. He is the co-owner of The Track Team, a music and sound production company based in Los Angeles and also produces hip-hop electronic music under the name, Deru. He is the grandson of renowned neurosurgeon, Joseph Ransohoff.
Wynn studied electronic music at the California Institute of the Arts, where he focused on synthesis, signal processing, acoustics, music theory and composition, and earned a Bachelor's degree in music technology.
In 2007, Wynn (as Deru) collaborated with British composer Joby Talbot on the score to Wayne McGregor's ballet, "Genus", based on Charles Darwin's book, On the Origin of Species, commissioned by the Paris Opera Ballet. The ballet premiered at the Palais Garnier in October 2007 and was commissioned for a second round of performances in November 2009. The eight-part score combines electronics with a 10-part choir and string instruments. The score is available on Ant-Zen and Dear Oh Dear Records and was featured in the 2009 documentary, "La Danse: The Paris Opera Ballet".
The Track Team:
Wynn is co-owner of a music and sound design company in Los Angeles called The Track Team. He was the force behind the sound design for all three seasons of Nickelodeon's hit television show, Avatar: The Last Airbender, which won a prestigious 2008 Peabody Award. Wynn was nominated for a Motion Picture Sound Editor's Golden Reel award in 2009 for his sound design work on Avatar: The Last Airbender.
He started The Track Team with co-founder Jeremy Zuckerman in 2004. Together they have created music for the Nickelodeon TV series, Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness, the score for the feature films Just Peck and A Leading Man and music and sound design for DC Comics shorts. Wynn is currently working on the sound design for the sequel to Avatar: The Last Airbender, Avatar: The Legend of Korra. Ben and Jeremy won a 2012 Emmy Award for music editing for Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness. In 2013, they were nominated for another Emmy Award for music editing for Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness and in 2014 as well, their third Emmy Award nomination.
Wynn is also an electronic music producer under the name "Deru". He is signed to the label Friends of Friends and has released three albums on Mush Records, Merck Records, and Neo Ouija and many remixes and tracks for compilations for labels like Hometapes, Ghostly International, Hymen Records, 1320 Records, Unseen, and Mille Plateaux. His forthcoming album, "1979", slated to be released on June 17, 2014, is a limited-edition sculptural object, featuring nine songs by Wynn and accompanied by nine short films by video artist Anthony Ciannamea, that are housed in a custom handheld video projector.
In 2010, Deru and fellow electronic music producer Free the Robots joined the electronic music group The Glitch Mob on their nationwide "Drink the Sea" tour.
Deru scored the music and curated the soundtrack for the feature-length film, Outliers, Vol. I: Iceland. The score is based on his field recordings from a trip to Iceland in October 2011. The film premiered in Chicago in July 2012.