Taro Kida, a prolific composer of theme songs for TV programs and commercials who was dubbed the "Mozart of Naniwa," referring to an old name of the Osaka-centered area in western Japan where he mainly worked, has died, his agency said Wednesday. He was 93.

The most famous work of the pianist-turned-composer, who hailed from Hyogo Prefecture, included TV commercial songs for Demae Iccho instant ramen and food products of the Osaka-based 551 Horai brands, as well as for the restaurant chain Kanidoraku, also headquartered in the city.

In a file photo taken in December 2010, Taro Kida (C) is pictured with his fans at an event in Osaka.

Kida died Tuesday, according to Office Tomde Co. The cause of his death is unknown.

When asked in past interviews about the number of songs he had made, Kida said there was no official count, but half-jokingly guessed it could be a few thousand or more.

A TV producer gave Kida his nickname as one of his songs sounded like Mozart's "Eine Kleine Nachtmusik."

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