The Simpsons is a vastly different show to what it was back in its golden era, that much is not really up for debate. And in a move that signals the fact that the series is trying to carve out as new and fresh a path as they possibly can, they just fired the guy who wrote all the show’s most iconic songs.

The series’ long-time composer Alf Clausen has reportedly been given the boot from the show, according to Variety.

Clausen has served as the show’s main composer for 27 years, with his first work for the series being the score for the first ‘Treehouse of Horror‘ episode way back in season two.

Clausen reportedly told Variety that he received a phone call from show producer Richard Sakai, telling him that the show was seeking “a different kind of music,” and that he would be removed from his position effective immediately. Clausen’s last work for the show was the score of the season 28 (jesus) finale, which aired back in May.

Longtime fans of the show will be intimately familiar with Clausen’s work, as he produced and composed the music behind virtually every song The Simpsons has featured on-air. This includes the likes of ‘We Do,’ ‘Who Needs The Kwik-E-Mart?,’ ‘The Monorail Song,’ ‘We Put The Spring In Springfield, and ‘You’re Checkin’ In,’ the latter two of which Clausen picked up Emmy Awards for Outstanding Individual Achievement in Music and Lyrics in 1997 and 1998 respectively. Clausen’s 30 overall Emmy nominations for his work on The Simpsons is the most of any musician.

It’s long been suspected that Clausen’s salary and musical budget have been sticking points for the production, despite the show’s overall hefty profitability. Clausen worked with a 35-piece orchestra, which included the costs of musicians, orchestration, and recording studios, with overall expenses often running into millions of dollars. The use of an orchestra was a demand of Matt Groening from the beginning of the show.

Clausen confirmed the news of his forced exit from the show on social media a short while ago.

Representatives from the FOX network have yet to issue comment.

Source: Variety