• 1724 ~ First Performance of J. S. Bach’s Sacred Cantata No. 26 Ach wie flüchtig, ach wie nichtig performed on the 24th Sunday following Trinity. A portion of Bach’s second annual Sacred Cantata cycle in Leipzig, 1724-25.
• 1736 ~ J. S. Bach named court composer by Poland’s King Agustus III.
• 1826 ~ Composer Felix Mendelssohn and his sister Fanny performed his overture to “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” for the first time.
• 1828 ~ Death of Austrian composer Franz Schubert in Vienna, at the age of 31 from typhus. He is buried near Beethoven.
• 1859 ~ Mikhail Ippolitov-Ivanov, Russian composer and conductor
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• 1874 ~ Birth of composer Karl Adrian Wohlfahrt.
• 1875 ~ First Performance of Tchaikovsky‘s Third Symphony, in Moscow.
• 1888 ~ Piano Debut in Boston of composer Edward MacDowell with the Kneisel Quartet.
• 1905 ~ Tommy Dorsey, American trombonist and bandleader
• 1923 ~ First Performances of Béla Bartók‘sFive Dances and Zoltán Kodály‘sPsalums Hungaricus in Budapest, marking the 50th anniversary of the union of cities Buda and Pest.
• 1936 ~ Birth of classical music commentator (Detroit Symphony broadcasts) Dick Cavett, in Kearney, Nebraska. ABC-TV talk show host (Dick Cavett Show).
• 1936 ~ First concert recorded on magnetic tape with the London Philharmonic orchestra conducted by Sir Thomas Beecham at BASF’s own concert hall in Ludwigshaven, Germany.
• 1937 ~ Ray Collins, Songwriter
• 1938 ~ Hank Medress, Singer with The Tokens, record producer
• 1943 ~ Fred Lipsius, Piano, sax with Blood Sweat & Tears
• 1943 ~ Stan Kenton and his orchestra recorded Artistry in Rhythm, the song that later become the Kenton theme. It was Capitol record number 159. The other side of the disk was titled, Eager Beaver.
• 1944 ~ Agnes Baltsa, Greek mezzo-soprano
• 1954 ~ Sammy Davis, Jr. was involved in a serious auto accident in San Bernardino, CA. Three days later, Davis lost the sight in his left eye. He later referred to the accident as the turning point of his career.
• 1957 ~ American conductor Leonard Bernstein named Music Director of the New York Philharmonic. First American-born and educated conductor named to head an important American Orchestra.
• 1961 ~ A year after Chubby Checker reached the #1 spot with The Twist, the singer appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show to sing the song again. The Twist became the first record to reach #1 a second time around, on January 13, 1962.
• 1962 ~ For the first time, a jazz concert was presented at the White House. Jazz had previously been served as background music only.
• 2000 ~ First Performance of Philip Glass‘ Double Concerto for Timpani and Orchestra, by the American Composers Orchestra. Lincoln Center in New York.
• 2017 ~ Della Reese [Delloreese Patricia Early], American singer and actress (Della Reese Show, Royal Family), died at the age of 86
• 2017 ~ Mel Tillis [Lonnie Melvin Tillis], American country singer (Who’s Julie, M-M-Mel), died of respiratory failure at the age of 85
• 1569 ~ Paul Sartorius, German organist and composer
• 1615 ~ Guillaume Dumanoir, II, French violinist and composer who composed dance music enjoyed by Louis XIV
• 1667 ~ Nathaniel Schnittelbach, composer, died at the age of 34
• 1715 ~ Girolamo Abos, composer of Italian opera and church music.
• 1720 ~ Carlo Antonio Campioni, Italian composer.
• 1757 ~ Daniel Read, American composer of the First New England School, and one of the primary figures in early American classical music.
• 1775 ~ Karl Marian Paradeiser, German composer, died at the age of 28.
• 1780 ~ Robert Archibald Smith, English composer.
• 1829 ~ Anton G Rubinstein, Russian pianist/conductor/composer
• 1840 ~ Frederick Scotson Clark, composer.
• 1848 ~ Frédéric Chopin played his final piano concert at a Polish benefit ball at Guildhall in London.
• 1850 ~ Giuseppe Verdi‘s opera Stifellio was first performed at the Teatro Grande in Trieste despite difficulties with the censors which resulted in cuts and changes.
• 1852 ~ Minnie Hauk, American soprano
• 1854 ~ First Performance of Anton Rubinstein‘s Ocean Symphony in Leipzig.
• 1860 ~ Edmund Scheucker, Viennese harpist.
• 1861 ~ Vaclav Suk, Czech-born Russian composer and violinist.
• 1861 ~ First Performance of Johannes Brahms‘ Piano Quintet No. 1 in g, Op. 25, at a rehearsal in Hamburg, with pianist Clara Schumann.
• 1862 ~ The work noted above received its official premiere with members of the Hellmesberger Quartet; Brahms at the piano, in Vienna.
• 1870 ~ Alfred Hill, Australian composer
• 1873 ~ David Karl Björling, Swedish tenor
• 1873 ~ W.C. Handy, American blues composer and bandleader
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• 1889 ~ George S. (Simon) Kaufman, Playwright: The Cocoanuts, A Night at the Opera, with Moss Hart, The Man Who Came to Dinner, You Can’t Take It with You
• 1893 ~ George Alexander Osborne, Irish pianist and composer (La Pluie de perles), died of natural causes at the age of 87
• 1894 ~ Debut of opera star Enrico Caruso in Mario Morelli’s L’Amico Francesco at Naples Teatro Nuovo.
• 1895 ~ Paul Hindemith, German-born American composer and conductor
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• 1896 ~ Lawrence Mervil Tibbett, American baritone
• 1905 ~ Eddie (Albert) Condon, Guitarist, bandleader, promoter of Dixieland Jazz
• 1908 ~ Conductor Arturo Toscanini made his debut in the United States this day. He appeared at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York, conducting Aida.
• 1931 ~ Bob Gibson, Singer, songwriter, leader of folk music movement in late ’50s, duo of Gibson and (Bob) Camp
• 1932 ~ The Palace in New York City closed its doors. It was the most famous vaudeville theater in America. Later, it became a movie house with live performances preceding the flicks; most notably: the team of Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis in their heyday.
• 1935 ~ The Rodgers and Hart musical, Jumbo, opened in New York City for a run of 233 performances.
• 1937 ~ Bob Crosby and his orchestra recorded South Rampart Street Parade on Decca Records.
• 1945 ~ Martine Van Hammel, Ballet, American Ballet Theatre
• 1955 ~ ‘Tennessee’ Ernie Ford drove to the top spot on the record charts on this day. Sixteen Tons, where he owed his “soul to the company store…”, became the fastest-selling record in history, jumping to #1 in just 3 weeks. The tune, on Capitol Records, stayed at #1 for eight weeks.
• 1964 ~ Albert Hay Malotte, composer, died at the age of 69
• 1964 ~ Diana Krall, Canadian Jazz pianist and singer
• 1970 ~ Anne Murray received a gold record for Snowbird. She was the first Canadian recording artist to receive a gold record.
• 2000 ~ Russ Conway, a British pianist known as the “Prince Charming of Pop” who sold
More than 30 million records in the 1950s and ’60s, died at age 75. He had 17 consecutive hits in the late 1950s and early 1960s, and won a silver disc when his record Roulette topped 250,000 sales – a total rapidly equaled by three other hits, Sidesaddle, China Tea and Snow Coach. Conway’s formal piano education consisted of one lesson at age 4. He left school at 14 and got work in a lawyer’s office. But he was sent to juvenile detention for three years for taking money he found in a package. In a detention center, he found a piano to play. While doing a stint as a pianist in a club, he was discovered by choreographer Irving Davies. He went on to provide piano accompaniment to a string of singers. Soon he was composing the songs that made him famous and won him the nicknames “Prince Charming of Pop” and the “Sheik of the Keyboard.”
• 2001 ~ Blue guitarist and singer Isaac Scott, a major figure in the city’s music scene for more than a quarter century, died of complications from diabetes. He was 56. A stream of musicians paid their respects to Scott, said his ex-wife, Eloise DePoe. He was found in his apartment Nov. 4 and never regained consciousness. Scott recorded several albums, including “The Isaac Scott Band,” “Big Time Blues Man” and “High Class Woman.” He also appeared on the compilation albums “Live at the San Francisco Jazz Festival” and “Live at the Roadhouse.” Primarily a “cover artist,” Scott did not write his own songs, which hindered national recognition. But he received several local honors, including the Washington Blues Society’s Hall of Fame (1991) and lifetime-achievement (2000) awards. He also performed at last year’s opening of the Experience Music Project. Scott taught himself piano and guitar, and started out playing gospel music, once touring the West Coast with the Five Blind Boys of Mississippi. In 1974, he turned his attention to blues, with a sound flavored by his love of Seattle-born guitar legend Jimi Hendrix. Like Albert Collins, an early influence, Scott played electric guitar with his thumb instead of a pick, which contributed to his distinctive sound. He also was known for his stamina, often playing two- and three-hour sets.
• 2001 ~ Tommy Flanagan, a jazz pianist who worked with such artists as Ella Fitzgerald, died of an arterial aneurysm. He was 71. Flanagan, part of his own classic jazz trio, accompanied Fitzgerald for 20 years, also acting as her musical director. He also worked for Tony Bennett. He became a celebrated figure in jazz with such trio albums as “Jazz Poet” (1989) and “Let’s” (1993). Flanagan’s trio included bassists George Mraz and Peter Washington, and drummers Kenny Washington, Lewis Nash and Albert Heath. Flanagan won the distinguished Danish Jazzpar Prize in 1993. Born in Detroit, Flanagan was the youngest of six children. He recorded “Sunset and the Mockingbird: The Birthday Concert,” live at the Vanguard in 1998. He was to appear at Iridium this holiday season.
.1817 ~ Louis Lefébure-Wély, French organist and composer
.1854 ~ George Whitefield Chadwick, American composer and conductor
.1868 ~ Gioachino (Antonio) Rossini, Italian composer (Barber of Seville, William Tell), died at the age of 76. “Delight must be the basis and aim of this art,” Rossini wrote. “Simple melody – clear rhythm!” Rossini’s contribution to the development of opera was immense.
.1921 ~ Loonas Kokkonen, Finnish composer
.1943 ~ Leonard Bernstein replaced an indisposed Bruno Walter as conductor of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra. Thus began a legendary career and worldwide appreciation for Bernstein’s many compositions with the orchestra.
.1951 ~ Nicolai Karlovich Medtner died. He was a Russian composer and pianist.
.1965 ~ Julie Harris starred in “Skyscraper”, which opened on Broadway in New York City. The musical ran for seven months.
.1968 ~ This was a good day for The Beatles. Their movie, “Yellow Submarine”, premiered in the U.S. and the single, Hey Jude, topped the pop music charts (it was in its 7th of 9 weeks at #1).
.1975 ~ Whoa Whoa Whoa, Feeeelings. One of the great lounge-lizard songs of all time, Feelings by Morris Albert, went gold.
.1988 ~ Antal Dorati, Hungarian-American conductor (Dresden Opera 1928-29), died at the age of 82
.1999 ~ Donald Mills passed away. He had been one of the Mills Brothers.
.2000 ~ Cecil Blackwood, a gospel singer who was a member of the Blackwood Brothers and crooned with Elvis Presley, of cancer at the age of 66. The Blackwood Brothers, who have won nine Grammys and 20 Dove awards, were a favorite of Elvis Presley, who briefly sang with Cecil Blackwood in a group named the Songfellows. The Blackwood Brothers were formed in 1934, the same year Blackwood was born in Ackerman, Miss. He became the group’s baritone in 1954. The Blackwood Brothers have recorded 300 albums, backed country stars Porter Wagoner and Barbara Mandrell, and are members of the Southern Gospel Music Hall of Fame.
.2000 ~ Jimmy Payne Sr., a tap dancer whose rhythm and technique, as well as a mastery of precise steps, attracted Bob Fosse, June Allyson, Gregory Hines, Lena Horne and others to his Chicago studio, died Nov. 13 at the age of 95. The son of a Cuban mother and Barbadian father, Payne grew up in the Panama Canal Zone before moving to New York in 1917. After traveling from New York to Chicago in 1947, Payne helped introduce African and Afro-Cuban rhythms to the dance scene. He taught in a number of Chicago dance studios from the 1950s into the 1970s. He continued to teach some of the city’s top dancers until his regimen was slowed by a number of strokes in his early 90s.
.2000 ~ New York entertainment lawyer and tax expert Joseph Taubman, who wrote how-to books for people working in the business side of show business, died at the age of 81. Taubman’s clients included Lionel Richie, Pete Seeger, Joan Baez and Arlo Guthrie. He also served as counsel to the National Film Board of Canada. Taubman wrote “Financing a Theatrical Production,” and his treatises on various aspects of the entertainment business published in the 1970s remain in print.
.2000 ~ The site, thebeatles.com, went live and is the band’s only official presence on the Internet among a flood of unofficial fan sites.
.2002 ~ Mieke van Hoek, a dance choreographer and teacher, died. She was 56. The Dutch-born van Hoek taught modern-dance choreography and dance improvisation at the Rotterdamse Dansacademie. After emigrating to the United States in 1977, van Hoek worked as a teaching assistant at the American Dance Festival in Durham, N.C., and studied at the Laban/Bartenieff Institute in New York. She founded a center for meditation, healing and the arts in Canones in 2000.
.1969 ~ “Can you tell me how to get … how to get to Sesame Street?” The classic, “Sesame Street” debuted on 170 Public Broadcasting stations and 20 commercial outlets. Created by the Children’s Television Workshop, the show starred endearing characters including Gordon, Susan, Bob, Bert, Ernie, the Cookie Monster, Oscar the Grouch and, of course, Big Bird!
.1986 ~ “Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band Live/1975-85”, the long-anticipated album by ‘The Boss’, hit record stores this day. Fans made the LP a one~day sellout, buying over a million copies and generating more first-day dollars than any record in 30 years. It’s a five-disc, 40-song set.
.1993 ~ “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” opened at Minskoff Theater in New York for 223 performances
.1994 ~ Carmen McRae passed away
.2014 ~ “Uptown Funk” single released by Bruno Mars (Billboard Song of the Year 2015, Grammy Record Of The Year, Grammy Song of the Year 2016)
.2015 ~ Allen Toussaint passed away. He was a New Orleans-based pianist, songwriter and Rock and Roll Hall of Famer.
.2015 ~ Robert Lawson Craft died. He was an American orchestral conductor, scholar and writer. Mr. Craft spent nearly a quarter-century as Stravinsky’s amanuensis, rehearsal conductor, musical adviser, globe-trotting traveling companion and surrogate son. After Stravinsky’s death in 1971, at 88, he was a writer, lecturer, conductor, public intellectual and keeper of the Stravinskian flame.
1814 ~ Adolphe Sax, Belgian instrumentalist, inventor of the saxophone and saxotromba
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1854 ~ John Phillip Sousa, American bandmaster and composer; “The March King”
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1860 ~ Ignace Jan Paderewski, Composer, pianist, Polish patriot, First Premier of Poland (1919), brought white Zinfandel wine grapes to U.S. for the first time
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1893 ~ Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Russian composer of the late-Romantic period (1812 Overture, Swan Lake), died at the age of 53
.1916 ~ Ray Conniff, American conductor, arranger and composer of popular music, trombonist
.1932 ~ Stonewall Jackson, Singer
.1936 ~ This was the day that big band icon Woody Herman played in his first recording session. He recorded Wintertime Dreams on Decca disc #1056.
.1937 ~ Eugene Pitt, Singer
.1938 ~ P.J. Proby (James Smith), Singer
.1940 ~ Guy Lombardo and the Royal Canadians recorded one of their lesser-known songs for Decca. It was The Moon Fell in the River.
.1941 ~ Doug Sahm, Singer, founded Sir Douglas Quintet
.1943 ~ Mike Clifford, Singer
.1947 ~ George Young, Guitarist with The Easybeats
.1948 ~ Glenn Frey, Songwriter, singer with The Eagles
1965 ~ Edgard Varèse, French-born composer, died at the age of 81
.2001 ~ John Denman, a clarinetist who was most recently artistic adviser to the Tucson Symphony Orchestra’s pops division, died from complications of esophageal cancer. He was 68. Denman, a native of London, was a principal clarinetist for the orchestra for more than 20 years. Denman also played principal clarinet with the London Symphony Orchestra and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. He taught music at Trinity College in England before coming to teach at the University of Arizona. He joined the Tucson Symphony Orchestra in the late 1970s. In 1984, Denman left the University of Arizona after failing to receive tenure. For the rest of his life, he focused on his performing career. He also designed a small clarinet, the Kinder-Klari, to make practicing easier for young hands. Denman performed and recorded with jazz icon Buddy DeFranco and was a member of several jazz bands.
.2002 ~ Maria Johansson, an organist who became a local legend for singing religious songs and hymns in one of Stockholm’s main squares every day for nearly three decades, died at the age of 84. The daughter of a preacher, Johansson often served homemade sandwiches to the poor during breaks in her daily performance. At one point, she went to work at a bakery to help pay for the sandwiches, her husband said.
.2016 ~ Zoltan Kocsis, Hungarian pianist and conductor, died at the age of 64
1739 ~ Karl Ditters von Dittersdorf, Austrian composer and violinist
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.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.
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.
1830 ~ Frederic Chopin left Warsaw for Paris, never to return. He was presented a cup of Polish soil on this day.
More about Chopin
1902 ~ Eugen Jochum, German conductor
.1921 ~ Jan Tausinger, Rumanian-born Czech violist, conductor and composer
.1923 ~ Victoria de Los Angeles, Spanish soprano
.1926 ~ Lou Donaldson, Alto saxophone, singer
.1937 ~ ‘Whispering’ Bill (James) Anderson, Songwriter, singer
.1940 ~ Barry Sadler, Songwriter, singer
.1944 ~ Keith Emerson, Keyboards with Emerson, Lake & Powell as well as Emerson, Lake & Palmer
.1944 ~ Chris Morris, Guitarist with Paper Lace
.1945 ~ Rick Grech, Bassist, violinist
.1950 ~ Dan Peek, Guitarist, singer with America
.1951 ~ Ronald Bell, Saxophone with Kool & The Gang
.1957 ~ Lyle Lovett, Grammy Award-winning singer, Best Male Country Vocal in 1989
.1959 ~ Eddie MacDonald, Bass with The Alarm
.1962 ~ Rick Allen, Drummer with Def Leppard
.1962 ~ Mags Furuholmen, Keyboards, singer with a-ha
.1968 ~ George Harrison’s soundtrack LP, “Wonderwall”, was released. It was the first solo album by one of The Beatles. The album was also the first on the new Apple label.
.1969 ~ Warner Brothers Records added Faces, to its roster. They fared OK, but even better when lead singer Rod Stewart stepped out to become a superstar on his own. The group’s former label, Mercury, capitalized on the fact by releasing Maggie Mae and three other Faces tunes before Stewart went solo for Warner exclusively.
.1969 ~ The last album of The Beatles reached #1 on the album chart. “Abbey Road” was the top LP for eleven nonconsecutive weeks. The final studio recordings from the group featured two songs; ‘Something’ & ‘Here Comes The Sun’. The cover supposedly contained clues adding to the ‘Paul Is Dead’ phenomenon: Paul is barefoot and the car number plate ‘LMW 281F’ supposedly referred to the fact that McCartney would be 28 if he was still alive. ‘LMW’ was said to stand for ‘Linda McCartney Weeps.’
1975 ~ Elton John’sIsland Girl hit number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The song parked itself at the top of the hit heap for 3 weeks.
.1979 ~ Andrew Lloyd Webber & Tim Rice’s musical “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” premiered
• 1813 ~ Franz Schubert, age 12, finished his first symphony, The Symphony in D Major
More information about Schubert
• 1896 ~ Howard Hanson, American composer, educator and conductor
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• 1909 ~ Josef Gingold, Russian-born American violinist
• 1936 ~ Charlie Daniels, American CMA Award-winning musician (1979), guitar, fiddle, singer with Charlie Daniels Band
• 1941 ~ Curtis Lee, Singer
• 1941 ~ Hank Marvin (Brian Rankin), Guitarist with The Shadows
• 1945 ~ Wayne Fontana (Glyn Ellis), Singer with The Mindbenders
• 1948 ~ Telma Hopkins, Singer with Dawn
• 1955 ~ A local kid from Lubbock, TX opened a concert for Marty Robbins and Elvis Presley. In the audience was a youngster by the name of Scott Davis. He would later become a superstar. We know him as Mac Davis. The kid who opened the concert was Buddy Holly.
• 1957 ~ After a show at the Pan Pacific Auditorium in Los Angeles, local police told Elvis Presley that he was not allowed to wiggle his hips onstage, the local press also ran headlines saying Elvis would have to clean up his act. The next night, the Los Angeles Vice Squad filmed his entire concert, to study his performance.
• 1961 ~ Brian Epstein, a record store owner in London, was asked by a customer for a copy of the record, My Bonnie, by a group known as The Silver Beatles. He didn’t have it in stock so he went to the Cavern Club to check out the group. He signed to manage them in a matter of days and renamed them The Beatles.
• 1965 ~ Earl Bostic, American jazz alto saxophonist and a pioneer of the post-war American rhythm and blues style, passed away
• 1980 ~ Annette Funicello, Cubby O’Brien, Tommy Cole, Sherry Alberoni and Dickie Dodd joined other Mouseketeers wearing black ears and white shirts on a sound stage in Burbank, CA. They were celebrating the 25th anniversary of the Mickey Mouse Club. The five special events each week were:
Fun with Music Day on Monday
Guest Star Day on Tuesday
Anything Can Happen Day on Wednesday
Circus Day on Thursday
Talent Roundup Day on Friday
• 2003 ~ Oliver Sain, a saxophonist whose work was later recorded by artists from Loretta Lynn to Sean “P. Diddy” Combs, died of bone cancer. He was 71. Sain was a musician, songwriter and producer, known for his performances on songs like Bus Stop and Feel Like Dancing in the 1970s. He performed as recently as the previous night, his wife said. Sain’s work was sampled by Combs on his “No Way Out” CD and recorded by artists including the Allman Brothers Band, Chaka Khan and Ry Cooder. Sain grew up in Dundee, Miss., where he became known for his saxophone playing. He moved to St. Louis in 1959 and opened a recording studio in the city in the next decade.
• 2008 ~ A statue honoring AC/DC’s Bon Scott was unveiled at the Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour in Western Australia. Although born in Scotland, Scott grew up in Fremantle after his family emigrated to Australia in 1952. Bon started out his newfound Australian life in Melbourne, his family lived in the suburb of Sunshine for 4 years before moving to Fremantle. Scott was born in 1946 died on 20th February 1980. He is buried in Fremantle Cemetery.
• 2018 ~ Richard GIll died at the age of 76. He was an Australian conductor of choral, orchestral and operatic works, who has been involved in music training and education.
• 1971 ~ Folk singer Joan Baez received a gold record for her hit, The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down. It turned out to be her biggest hit, peaking at #3 on the charts on October 2, 1971.
• 1979 ~ Nadia Boulanger, French composer and conductor (1st woman to conduct Boston Symphony), died at the age of 92
• 1983 ~ Celebrating its 100th anniversary, New York’s Metropolitan Opera featured a daylong concert with some of the world’s greatest opera stars. On stage at the Met were Dame Joan Sutherland, Placido Domingo and Luciano Pavarotti.
• 2001 ~ Tom Baker, one of Australia’s most respected jazz musicians, died of a heart attack while touring in the Netherlands. He was 49. Baker, a native of California, took up residence in Australia 30 years ago. He was a regular at Sydney’s famous jazz club, The Basement. Willie Qua, drummer and co-founder of one of Australia’s best-known jazz bands, Galapagos Duck, said Baker had often played as “a part-time member” of the band and was an icon of the Sydney jazz scene. Baker formed his first band, Tom Baker’s San Francisco Jazz Band, in 1975, earning himself a reputation as one of Australia’s very best jazz musicians. Recently he toured extensively through Europe and America.
Franz Liszt was born in Raiding, near Ödenburg, October 22, 1811 and died in Bayreuth, July 31, 1886. He was a Hungarian composer and pianist who was a major influence during the romantic period. Liszt was an outstanding pianist at seven, composed at eight and made concert appearances at nine. In addition to being a piano virtuoso, he was also a critic, conductor, city music director, literary writer and transcriber of the works of other composers. He transcribed Beethoven’s Symphonies for the piano.
Franz Liszt began his career as the outstanding concert pianist of the century, who, along with the prodigious violinist Niccoló Paganini (1782-1840), created the cult of the modern instrumental virtuoso. To show off his phenomenal and unprecedented technique, Liszt composed a great deal of music designed specifically for this purpose, resulting in a vast amount of piano literature laden with dazzling, and other technical marvels. In this vein, Liszt composed a series of virtuosic rhapsodies on Hungarian gypsy melodies, the best-known being the all too familiar Hungarian Rhapsody no. 2. Liszt developed the rhapsody as a form of serious music. This kind of music is worlds apart from the generally more introspective, poetic music of pianist-composer Frédéric Chopin.
Liszt was wildly handsome and hugely talented. He was extremely popular in Paris during the 1830’s. It is said that women actually fainted at his piano recitals. He was the first to position the piano so that its lid reflected the sound and the audience could see his profile as he performed.
Liszt was the first to write a tone poem, which is an extended, single-movement work for orchestra, inspired by paintings, plays, poems or other literary or visual works, and attempting to convey the ideas expressed in those media through music. Such a work is Les Préludes, based on a poem in which life is expressed as a series of struggles, passions, and mysteries, all serving as a mere prelude to . . .what? The Romantic genre of the symphonic poem, as well as its cousin the concert overture, became very attractive to many later composers, including Saint-Saëns, Tchaikovsky, Dvorák, Sibelius, and Richard Strauss.