November 4 ~ in Music History

today

.1783 ~ Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s “Symphony No. 36” premiered in Linz, Austria

.1841 ~ Carl Tausig, Polish pianist

OCMS 1847 ~ Felix Mendelssohn died
More information about Mendelssohn

.1876 ~ Johannes Brahms’ 1st Symphony in c minor, Op. 68 premiered in Karlsruhe, Grand Duchy of Baden

.1922 ~ Paul Rovsing Olsen, Danish composer, ethnomusicologist and music critic

.1922 ~ Anthony Vazzana, American composer

.1938 ~ Harry Elston, Musician with Friends of Distinction

.1938 ~ You’re a Sweet Little Headache, from the movie “Paris Honeymoon”, was recorded by Bing Crosby on Decca.

.1940 ~ Delbert McClinton, Songwriter, singer

.1947 ~ Mike Smith, Musician, saxophone

.1954 ~ Florence Henderson, who was all of 20 years old, joined with Ezio Pinza and Walter Slezak in “Fanny”. The show lit up Broadway 888 times.

.1962 ~ Bob Dylan gave his first major concert outside of Greenwich Village. The Carnegie Hall solo appearance was not well attended.

.1963 ~ The Beatles played a Royal Command Performance as part of an evening of entertainment for Queen Elizabeth at the Prince of Wales Theatre in London. David Frost was the emcee.

.1984 ~ The Artist Formerly Known as Prince kicked off his fall tour in Detroit. He broke the record for sold-out performances at the 20,000-seat Joe Louis Arena. The previous record-holder was The Artist Still Known as Neil Diamond, in 1983.

.2000 ~ Vernel Fournier, who was a drummer for premier jazz acts such as Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie, passed away after suffering an aneurysm. He was 72. Fournier, a New Orleans native, took lessons from a Bourbon Street drummer and as a teen played in New Orleans. He performed with jazz singers including Nancy Wilson and Billy Eckstine. He moved from New York City, where he lived for more than 30 years, to Madison County in 1998.

November 2 ~ in Music History

today

OCMS 1739 ~ Karl Ditters von Dittersdorf, Austrian composer and violinist
More information about Dittersdorf

.1785 ~ Frederich Kalkbrenner, German-French pianist and composer

.1937 ~ Earl ‘Speedoo’ Carroll, Singer with these groups the Carnations, the Cadillacs and the Coasters

.1938 ~ Jay Black (David Blatt), Singer with Jay and The Americans

.1941 ~ Brian Poole, Singer with Brian Poole & The Tremeloes

.1941 ~ Bruce Welch (Cripps), Guitarist with The Shadows

.1944 ~ Keith Emerson, British rock keyboardist

.1946 ~ Giuseppe Sinopoli, Italian conductor and composer

.1952 ~ Maxine Nightingale, Singer

.1955 ~ The first pop song by Julie London appeared on the charts. London’s smoky and sultry rendition of Cry Me a River stayed on the pop chart for five months, reaching as high as #9. Julie was Mrs. Jack Webb (Dragnet) and Mrs. Bobby Troup (songwriter, trumpeter).

.1958 ~ Billboard magazine introduced a new chart. It ranked the top singles in order, from number 1 to 100. Previously, only 30 records had been on the weekly hit list.

.1963 ~ After giving benefit performances for years, singer Kate Smith presented her first full concert performance to a paying crowd at Carnegie Hall in New York City.

OCMS 1968 ~ Another biggie for Stevie Wonder went on sale. For Once in My Life reached #2 on the pop charts on December 28, 1968.

.1974 ~ The first of the former Beatles to try a nationwide concert tour was in Los Angeles, appearing at the Forum. Unfortunately, only half the house was filled to see George Harrison. He stopped touring soon thereafter.

.1985 ~ On this day, for only the second time, a TV soundtrack LP topped the album charts. “Miami Vice” (title track by Jan Hammer) enjoyed a run of 11 (nonconsecutive) weeks. The only other TV soundtrack LP to chart at #1 was Henry Mancini’s “Peter Gunn” in 1959.

October 29 ~ in Music History

today

 

• 1815 ~ Daniel Decatur Emmett, Composer of Dixie, originally titled Dixie’s Land

• 1829 ~ Maria Anna Walburga Ignatia Mozart (called Marianne and nicknamed “Nannerl”), Austrian pianist and Wolfgang’s sister, died at the age of 78

• 1891 ~ Fanny Brice (Borach), American singer and comedienne

• 1922 ~ Neal Hefti, Composer of TV’s Batman theme, The Odd Couple theme; Neal Hefti and His Orchestra performed on The Kate Smith Show

• 1925 ~ “Zoot” (John Haley) Sims, American jazz tenor and alto saxophonist and clarinetist.  He played with the Benny Goodman Band, Woody Herman Orchestra, Stan Kenton, Gerry Mulligan, Birdland All-Stars, Jazz at Carnegie Hall

• 1926 ~ Jon Vickers, Canadian tenor

• 1930 ~ The tune, It Must Be True, was recorded on Victor by Bing Crosby, who sang with Gus Arnheim and his orchestra.

• 1937 ~ Sonny Osborne, 5-string banjo, singer, baritone with Osborne Brothers

• 1937 ~ Michael Ponti, Freiburg Germany, pianist (Boston Competition 1964)

• 1941 ~ Jody Miller, Grammy Award-winning singer

• 1944 ~ Denny Laine (Brian Hines), Guitarist, singer with The Moody Blues

• 1944 ~ The Martha Graham dance company performed a famous contemporary composition called “Appalachian Spring” by Aaron Copland. This debut performance was staged at the Library of Congress.

• 1945 ~ Melba Moore, Singer and actress

• 1946 ~ Peter Green, Guitarist with Fleetwood Mac

• 1947 ~ Richard Dreyfuss, Academy Award-winning actor in The Goodbye Girl (1977) and Mr. Holland’s Opus

• 1953 ~ William Kapell, American pianist and recording artist, died in a plane crash at the age of 31

• 1961 ~ Randy (Steven Randall) Jackson, Singer with The Jackson Five, brother of Michael, Jermaine, Janet, LaToya, Tito, etc.

• 1961 ~ The top, pop song on the charts belonged to Dion (DiMucci). Runaround Sue was in its second week at the tiptop of the top~tune tabulation (it was in the top 40 for three months).

• 1970 ~ Neil Diamond received a gold record for the hit, Cracklin’ Rosie.

• 1981 ~ Loretta Lynn received a gold record for her album, “Greatest Hits, Vol. 2”.

• 1983 ~ After four weeks at #1 on the pop music charts, Bonnie Tyler’s Total Eclipse of the Heart slipped to #2. It was replaced by Islands in the Stream by Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton.

• 1987 ~ Woody Herman, American jazz clarinetist, alto and soprano saxophonist, singer, and big band leader passed away

• 2001 ~ Henry Berthold “Spike” Robinson, a Britain-based American saxophonist admired for his liquid tone and lyrical verve, died at the age of 71. Robinson was born in Wisconsin and came to Britain as a U.S. Navy bandsman after World War II. In his spare, he time played with British bebop pioneers such as Ronnie Scott, John Dankworth and Victor Feldman, making a series of recordings for the Esquire label. He returned to the United States and completed an engineering degree, continuing to play in jazz clubs while working for Honeywell Corp. He returned to music full-time in 1981 after recording an album of Harry Warren compositions featuring Feldman and bassist Ray Brown. In 1989 Robinson moved to England. Despite poor health, he played steadily throughout Europe and the United States. He also recorded for the Edinburgh- based Hep label.

October 17 ~ in Music History

today

• 1810 ~ Giovanni Matteo Mario, Italian tenor

• 1849 ~ Frederic Chopin died at the age of 39. Chopin was a Polish composer and virtuoso pianist of the Romantic era who wrote primarily for solo piano. He has maintained worldwide renown as a leading musician of his era, one whose “poetic genius was based on a professional technique that was without equal in his generation.

• 1892 ~ Herbert Howells, British composer

• 1909 ~ Cozy (William Randolph) Cole, Drummer. He played with Cab CallowayLouis Armstrong, in films – Make Mine Music, The Glenn Miller Story and started a drummers’ school with Gene Krupa

• 1938 ~ This was a big day in Tinseltown. NBC moved to the corner of Sunset and Vine, the ‘Crossroads of the World’. The new Hollywood Radio City drew thousands of visitors ready to fill studio-audience seats for popular radio programs.

• 1940 ~ James Seals, Singer, guitar, saxophone, fiddle with Seals and Crofts

• 1940 ~ One year before recording that memorable song, Fry Me Cookie, with a Can of Lard, Will Bradley’s orchestra recorded Five O’Clock Whistle, also on Columbia Records.

• 1941 ~ Alan Howard, Bass with Brian Poole & The Tremeloes

• 1942 ~ Gary Puckett, Singer with The Union Gap

• 1945 ~ Actress Ava Gardner made news. She married bandleader Artie Shaw.

• 1946 ~ Jim Tucker, Guitarist with The Turtles until 1965

• 1949 ~ Bill Hudson, Comedian, singer with The Hudson Brothers, was married to actress Goldie Hawn

• 1953 ~ The first concert of contemporary Canadian music presented in the U.S. was performed by conductor Leopold Stokowski at Carnegie Hall in New York City.

• 1955 ~ Jose Ferrer and Claire Bloom starred on NBC’s Producer’s Showcase. They performed in “Cyrano De Bergerac”. Ferrer also won an Oscar for his performance in the film version.

• 1958 ~ Alan Jackson, Singer

• 1962 ~ Though the ‘Fab Four’ would appear on both radio and television, on what they would call ‘Auntie Beeb’ (the BBC), The Beatles made their first appearance this day on Great Britain’s Grenada TV Network.

• 1967 ~ A controversial rock musical “Hair”, opened on this day at the Anspacher Theatre in New York City. It ran for 1,742 performances and then became a movie.

• 1983 ~ Actor Anthony Quinn lit up the Great White Way in the revival of the 1968 musical, “Zorba”, that reunited Quinn with Lila Kedrova, who played Madame Hortense. They both had appeared in the film portrayal, “Zorba the Greek”, which won Quinn a nomination for Best Actor, and an Oscar for Kedrova as Best Supporting Actress. This was one of the few films that came before the Broadway show, rather than the reverse.

• 2003 ~ Bernard Schwartz, who produced “Coal Miner’s Daughter,” the Academy Award-nominated biopic of country singer Loretta Lynn, died of complications following a stroke. He was 85. Schwartz was a one-time Broadway child actor who got into television and film production in the 1950s, working on the popular paranormal suspense show “Alcoa Presents: One Step Beyond” and the hit science fiction film “Journey to the Center of the Earth.” Schwartz’ best known and most lauded production was “Coal Miner’s Daughter,” the 1980 film inspired by Lynn’s song of the same name. Sissy Spacek won an Oscar for her portrayal of Lynn and the film won the Golden Globe award for best musical or comedy. It also was nominated for an Oscar for best picture. In 1985, Schwartz featured Patsy Cline’s life in “Sweet Dreams,” which was named for one of her songs and starred Jessica Lange as the music legend killed in a plane crash. He also produced country singer Amy Grant’s 1986 TV special “Headin’ Home for the Holidays” and worked with Priscilla Presley on the 1988 miniseries “Elvis and Me.” Another of his best-known productions was 1983’s “Psycho II,” the darkly humorous but far bloodier sequel to Hitchcock’s 1960 thriller about troubled motel operator Norman Bates. Other feature films included “The Wackiest Ship in the Army,” “Global Affair,” which starred Bob Hope, and “Rage,” which starred Glenn Ford. Schwartz also produced “That Man Bolt” and “Bucktown,” both vehicles for former football star Fred Williamson, and the thriller “Roadgames” starring Stacey Keach and Jamie Lee Curtis.

October 5 ~ in Music History

today

• 1830 ~ Chester A. Arthur, Piano-playing president
Other Presidential Musicians

• 1925 ~ Jürgen Jürgens, German conductor

• 1930 ~ The New York Philharmonic Orchestra was first heard on the air over CBS radio from Carnegie Hall. The Sunday afternoon concerts set CBS back $15,000. Not per week, but for the entire season!

• 1935 ~ Margie Singleton, Singer, TV performer on Louisiana Hayride

• 1938 ~ Johnny Duncan, Singer

• 1938 ~ Carlo Mastangelo, Singer with Dion and The Belmonts

• 1939 ~ As long as Ted Weems’ orchestra recorded on Decca Records, so did the featured vocalist in his band, the barber from Canonsburg, PA, Perry Como. Before becoming a star in his own right, and making the move to RCA Records and NBC, ‘Mr. C.’ recorded I Wonder Who’s Kissing Her Now with Weems on Decca.

• 1943 ~ Steve Miller, Singer, songwriter with The Steve Miller Band

• 1947 ~ A small Northern California company got a major boost from Bing Crosby. The first show recorded on tape was broadcast on ABC radio. ‘Der Bingle’ was so popular, that his taped show promoted wide distribution of the new magnetic tape recorders that would become broadcast classics – the venerable Ampex 200.

• 1949 ~ Brian Connolly, Singer with The Sweet

• 1949 ~ B.W. Stevenson, Singer, songwriter

• 1950 ~ Eddie Clarke, Guitarist with Motorhead

• 1951 ~ Bob Geldof, Singer, songwriter with Boomtown Rats, organized fund-raising group: Band Aid

• 1955 ~ Leo Barnes, Musician with Hothouse Flowers

• 1962 ~ Ken Noda, American pianist and composer

• 1962 ~ The Beatles debut single ‘Love Me Do’ was released in the UK. It spent 26 weeks on the chart peaking at No.17. Beatles producer George Martin has said when ‘Love Me Do’ was released, it was the day the world changed.

• 1965 ~ Adding to his many credits, accolades and honors, Henry Mancini received a gold record for the soundtrack LP from the movie, The Pink Panther.

• 2000 ~ Singer, actor and composer Cuco Sanchez, whose six-decade career included the ranchera hits La cama de piedra and Anillo de compromiso, died of liver failure. He was 79. Sanchez, whose full name was Jose del Refugio Sanchez Saldana, recorded his first song at 13. In 1940, he was signed by Mexico’s largest media company, for which he acted in movies and television programs. Sanchez’s long career included about 200 songs, which were translated into 27 languages. Among his hits were Mi chata, Anoche estuve llorando, No soy monedita de oro, Buenas noches mi amor, Con la misma moneda, Que manera de perder, Fallaste corazon, and Oigame compadre. Sanchez also composed music for movies.

• 2000 ~ The Beatles Release Own Account of Band’s History. Its title is “The Beatles Anthology”

• 2003 ~ Clarence B. Cagle, a legendary pianist for the Texas Playboys, died at the age of 83. Cagle began playing violin and banjo at house parties at age 9. In 1938, Cagle moved to Coffeyville, Kan., where he played with Herb Goddard’s Oklahoma Wanderers. By then, he’d switched to playing the piano. Cagle auditioned for legendary Texas swing musician Bob Wills in 1943 in Tulsa. He got the job and performed with the Texas Playboys until Wills left for Hollywood to make Western films. Cagle stayed in Tulsa with Wills’ brother, Johnnie Lee Wills, developing his well-known “Boogie Woogie Highball.” Cagle played with him for the next 17 years. He was admitted to the Western Swing Hall of Fame in Sacramento, Calif., in 1988.

• 2014 ~ Geoffrey Holder, Trinidadian-American actor, choreographer, singer, director and painter (Annie, The Wiz), died at the age of 84

It’s Vladimir’s Birthday!

Vladimir Horowitz

 

 

Destined to become one of the world’s greatest pianists, Vladimir Horowitz was born in 1903 in Kiev, Russia. While most young children were playing games, Vladimir was playing with the ivories. His time was well spent as he was fully capable of performing publicly by the time he was sixteen.

Within four years, the young piano virtuoso was entertaining audiences at recitals throughout Leningrad – 23 performances in one year, where he played over 200 different works of music, never repeating a composition. After Leningrad, Horowitz played in concerts in Berlin, Hamburg and Paris.

In 1928, the Russian pianist traveled to the United States to play with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra at Carnegie Hall. Arturo Toscanini chose Horowitz to perform his first solo with the New York Philharmonic. It was there that Horowitz met his bride-to-be, Toscanini’s daughter, Wanda. The two were wed in Milan in 1933. New York became Horowitz’ permanent home in 1940. He became a U.S. citizen a few years later, devoting the rest of his career to benefit performances, and helping young, aspiring artists.

His return to the concert stage in May of 1965 was a triumphant success, as was his television recital, Vladimir Horowitz at Carnegie Hall.

Just three years before his death, Vladimir Horowitz returned to his homeland to perform once again for the Russian people on April 20, 1986. They felt he had been away far too long … close to sixty years.

     Horowitz’s birthday

     anniversary of Horowitz’s death

     History of the Piano

     News Item including Horowitz

 

September 29 ~ in Music History

today

 

• 1863 ~ Opera “The Pearl Fishers” (Les Pêcheurs de Perles) by Bizet was first produced at the Théâtre Lyrique in Paris

• 1907 ~ (Orvon) Gene Autry, ‘The Singing Cowboy’, actor in over 100 cowboy westerns, singer, CMA Hall of Fame and the only person to have 5 Hollywood Walk of Fame stars. They were for film, radio, TV, stage and records.

• 1930 ~ Richard Bonynge, Australian conductor

• 1930 ~ “Ba, ba, ba, boo. I will, ba ba ba boo … marry you!” ‘Der Bingle’, better known as Bing Crosby, America’s premier crooner for decades, married Dixie Lee.

OCMS 1935 ~ Jerry Lee Lewis, American rock-and-roll singer and pianist
More information about Lewis

• 1942 ~ Jean-Luc Ponty, French jazz pianist

• 1947 ~ Dizzy Gillespie presented his first Carnegie Hall concert in New York, adding a sophisticated jazz touch to the famous concert emporium. Diz would become one of the jazz greats of all time. His trademark: Two cheeks pushed out until it looked like his face would explode. But, as the hepcats said, “Man, that guy can blow!”

 

• 1948 ~ Mark Farner, Guitar: singer with Grand Funk Railroad

• 1953 ~ Danny Thomas, who many now remember as Marlo’s dad and Phil Donahue’s father-in-law, is also remembered for many things that influenced television. At the suggestion of his friend, Desi Arnaz, Thomas negotiated a deal that would allow him to retain ownership rights to his programs, like Make Room for Daddy, which debuted this day on ABC-TV. Later, in 1957, the show would move to CBS under the Desilu/Danny Thomas Productions banner. The rest is, literally, TV history. His success allowed him to give something back to the world, in the form of his philanthropic efforts to build St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital in Memphis. “All I prayed for was a break,” he once told an interviewer, “and I said I would do anything, anything, to pay back the prayer if it could be answered. All I needed was a sign of what to do and I would do it.” And so it was.

• 1962 ~ My Fair Lady closed on this day after a run of 6½ years. At the time, the show held the Broadway record for longest-running musical of all time. 3,750,000 people watched the wonderful show and heard tunes like Wouldn’t it Be Loverly, Show Me, Get Me to the Church on Time, I’m an Ordinary Man, I’ve Grown Accustomed to Her Face and the Vic Damone/Robert Goulet standard, On the Street Where You Live. The team of Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe turned George Bernard Shaw’s play, Pygmalion, into a colorful, musical production. They gave a new life to the rough-around-the-edges, cockney, flower girl; the subject of a bet between Professor Higgins (Just You Wait, ’Enry ’Iggins) and a colleague. The Professor bet that he could turn Eliza Doolittle into a proper lady (The Rain in Spain). With a Little Bit of Luck he did it. Eliza, looking and acting very much like a princess, sang I Could Have Danced All Night. After its Broadway success, My Fair Lady was made into a motion picture (1964) and won seven Academy Awards including Best Picture.

• 1983 ~ On the Great White Way, A Chorus Line became the longest-running show on Broadway, with performance number 3,389. Grease, the rock ’n’ roll production, had been the previous box-office champ since 1980.

• 2001 ~ Dan Cushman, a prolific fiction writer whose 1953 novel “Stay Away, Joe” was made into a movie starring Elvis Presley, died of heart failure. He was 92. The former New York Times book critic wrote dozens of books and was best known for “Stay Away, Joe.” The book’s portrayal of American Indians stirred controversy in Montana, and Indian novelist James Welch vetoed an excerpt for inclusion in “The Last Best Place,” a Montana anthology. In 1998 Cushman received the H.G. Merriam Award for Distinguished Contributions to Montana Literature, joining such notables as Richard Hugo, A.B. Guthrie Jr. and Norman Maclean. Cushman was first paid for his writing when he received $5 a week for reporting news for a newspaper in Big Sandy, Mont. “It was in Big Sandy where I learned all the trouble you can cause by printing all the news of a small town,” Cushman said. He wrote books set in the South Pacific, the Congo and the Yukon, and drew on his colorful life for much of his fiction. Cushman worked as a cowboy, printer, prospector, geologist’s assistant, advertising writer and radio announcer.