• 1918 ~ Milton DeLugg, Bandleader on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson; Milton DeLugg and His Orchestra: Abe Burrows’ Almanac, The Chuck Barris Rah Rah Show, Dagmar’s Canteen, Doodles Weaver, The Gong Show, Judge for Yourself, Your Hit Parade; played accordion in The Milton DeLugg Quartet and songwriter
• 1928 ~ Jörg Demus, Austrian pianist
• 1934 ~ Billy Paul (Paul Williams), Singer
• 1941 ~ Tom McGuinness, Bass, guitar with Manfred Mann; McGuinness Flint; and Blues Band
• 1942 ~ Ted Bluechel, Jr., Singer, drummer with The Association
• 1944 ~ Eric Bloom, Singer, guitarist
• 1945 ~ John Densmore, Musician with The Doors
• 1950 ~ Dino Lipatti, classical pianist and composer whose career was cut short from causes related to Hodgkin’s disease, died at the age of 33
• 1952 ~ Michael McDonald, Singer, songwriter, keyboard with The Doobie Brothers
• 1960 ~ Rick Savage, Bass with Def Leppard
• 1972 ~ Motown’s Temptations reached the #1 spot on the top 40 charts with Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone. It was the fourth #1 hit for the Temptations, joining My Girl, I Can’t Get Next to You and Just My Imagination.
• 1981 Hershy Kay, composer, died at the age of 62. Union Jack is a ballet made by New York City Ballet co-founder and founding choreographer George Balanchine to traditional British tunes, hornpipe melodies and music-hall songs, ca. 1890–1914, adapted by Hershy Kay. The premiere took place on 13 May 1976, at the New York State Theater, Lincoln Center, to honor British heritage in the United States its bicentennial with costumes by Rouben Ter-Arutunian, original lighting by Ronald Bates and current lighting by Mark Stanley. At the finale, the ensemble spells out “God Save the Queen” in semaphore code and the Union Jack unfurls. Principal dancer Jock Soto included an excerpt from Union Jack in his farewell performance in June 2005.
• 1925 ~ June Christy (Shirley Luster), Singer, sang with Stan Kenton band
• 1929 ~ Leo Reisman and his orchestra recorded Happy Days are Here Again for Victor Records. The classic was recorded just three weeks after the stock market crash that plunged the nation into the Great Depression.
• 1937 ~ Ruth Laredo, American pianist
• 1940 ~ Tony Butala, Singer with The Lettermen
• 1942 ~ Norman Greenbaum, Singer
• 1943 ~ Meredith Monk, American composer, dancer, choreographer and singer
• 1946 ~ Duane Allman, Guitarist with The Allman Brothers Band
• 1946 ~ Ray Stiles, Bass, singer with Mud
• 1947 ~ George Grantham, Drummer, singer with Poco
• 1947 ~ Joe Walsh, Guitarist, singer with the Eagles; James Gang
• 1948 ~ Barbara Hendricks, American soprano
• 1957 ~ Jimmy Brown, Drummer with UB40
• 1959 ~ One of America’s great rock jocks was fired from WABC radio in New York. The ‘Moondoggy’ himself, Alan Freed, was axed in the midst of the payola music scandal.
• 1966 ~ Cabaret opened on Broadway for the first of 1,166 stellar performances. Joel Gray starred in the hugely successful musical that is an adaptation of both the play, “I Am a Camera”, and the novel, “Goodbye to Berlin”.
• 1971 ~ Isaac Hayes of Memphis, TN got his first #1 hit as the Theme from Shaft began a two-week stay at the top of the charts.
• 1973 ~ Allan Sherman, American parody singer and songwriter (Hello Muddah, Hello Faddah), died from emphysema at the age of 48
• 1984 ~ The largest crowd to see the unveiling of a Hollywood Walk-of-Fame star turned out as Michael Jackson got his piece of the sidewalk right in front of Mann’s Chinese Theatre in Los Angeles. ‘The Gloved One’ became star number 1,793 on the famed walk.
• 2003 ~ Katherine Bidwell, who supported performing arts programs and held positions at the Metropolitan Opera Guild and Lincoln Center, died. She was 66. A musician herself, Bidwell joined the St. Louis Municipal Opera when she was 18. She became a trustee at Sarah Lawrence College, her alma mater, and sponsored performing arts programs there. In 1966, Bidwell joined the board of the Metropolitan Opera Guild. She was its president and chief executive from 1979 to 1986, and for the next 10 years, she was director of special projects for Lincoln Center. Bidwell founded the Katherine Bidwell Foundation for Young Singers and the patrons’ program of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. She was a trustee of several other organizations, including Westminster Choir College and the London School of Music and Dramatic Arts.
.1778 ~ Johann Nepomuk Hummel, German pianist and composer
.1805 ~ Fanny Cacilia Mendelssohn Hensel, German pianist and composer. She composed over 460 pieces of music. Her compositions include a piano trio and several books of solo piano pieces and songs. A number of her songs were originally published under her brother, Felix Mendelssohn’s, name in his opus 8 and 9 collections. Her piano works are often in the manner of songs, and many carry the name Lieder für das Pianoforte (Songs for the piano, a parallel to Felix’s Songs without Words).
.1831 ~ Ignaz Joseph Pleyel, Austrian composer/piano builder, died at the age of 74
1900 ~ Aaron Copland, American composer and conductor
Read quotes by and about Copland
More information about Copland
.1904 ~ Art Hodes, Russian-born American jazz pianist
.1915 ~ Martha Tilton, Singer, actress in The Benny Goodman Story, Sunny
.1915 ~ Theodor Leschetizky, composer, died at the age of 85
.1920 ~ Johnny Desmond (Giovanni DeSimone), Singer with the Bob-O-Links, the Bob Crosby Band, Glenn Miller AAF band, Don McNeill’s Breakfast Club, Your Hit Parade, Face the Music and an actor
.1921 ~ KYW radio, Chicago, IL broadcast the first opera by a professional company. Listeners heard Samson Et Dalila as it was being performed at the Chicago Auditorium.
.1940 ~ Freddie Garrity, Singer with Freddie and the Dreamers
.1944 ~ An outstanding array of musicians gathered in Hollywood to record a classic. Tommy Dorsey and orchestra made Opus No. 1, Victor record number 20-1608. Buddy Rich was the drummer in the session, Al Klink and Buddy DeFranco blew sax and Nelson Riddle played trombone on the Sy Oliver arrangement.
.1946 ~ Manuel de Falla, Spanish composer died at the age of 70. Along with Isaac Albéniz and Enrique Granados, he was one of Spain’s most important musicians of the first half of the 20th century.
.1948 ~ James Young, Guitarist with Styx
.1951 ~ Stephen Bishop, Singer, guitarist, songwriter
.1953 ~ Alexander O’Neal, Songwriter, singer
.1954 ~ Yanni (Chrysomallis), Pianist, music used on broadcasts of Tour de France, Olympic Games, World Series; swimmer on the Greek National Swim Team
.1955 ~ Frankie Banali, Musician with Quiet Riot
.1956 ~ Alec Such, Bass with Bon Jovi
.1967 ~ The Monkees received a gold record for Daydream Believer.
.1975 ~ They Just Can’t Stop It (The Games People Play) became a gold record for the Spinners. Their other hits include Then Came You (with Dionne Warwick), Could It Be I’m Falling in Love, The Rubberband Man, Working My Way Back to You, Cupid, It’s a Shame and I’ll Be Around, for Motown.
.1977 ~ Richard Addinsell, English composer (Alice in Wonderland), died at the age of 73
.1981 ~ For the second week in a row, Daryl Hall and John Oates owned the top spot on the pop music charts with Private Eyes.
.2000 ~ David Wilson, drummer and backup vocalist for The Cascades, died at the age of 63. The Cascades were best known for their No. 1 1963 hit Rhythm of the Rain, as well as Second Chance and Shy Girl. Wilson was born in 1936 in Scotland and moved to the United States with his family six years later. After he joined the Navy, Wilson formed a band with songwriter John Gummoe and some friends in San Diego. They first called themselves the Thunder Notes, but later took the name The Cascades when they recorded Rhythm of the Rain. The single earned the group a gold record.
.1880 ~ Sarah Bernhardt made her American stage debut. Bernhardt appeared in Adrienne Lecouvreur in New York City.
.1890 ~ Caesar-Auguste Franck, Belgian organist/composer died in Paris
.1921 ~ Jerome Hines, American bass
.1924 ~ Sergei Mikhailovich Lyapunov, Russian pianist and composer
.1927 ~ Patti Page, American singer of popular music
.1927 ~ Chris Conner, Singer
.1932 ~ The team of Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein II debuted with their show, Make Mine Music. The Broadway production continued for 342 performances.
.1939 ~ This day marked Frank Sinatra’s last recording session with the Harry James Band. Sides recorded were Every Day of My Life and Ciribiribin.
.1939 ~ “Life With Father” premiered on Broadway in New York City. Eight years later, the show broke the existing record for longest-running stage production.
.1941 ~ Rodney Slater, Saxophone, trumpet with The Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band
.1944 ~ Bonnie Bramlett, Songwriter, singer with Delaney and Bonnie and Friends
.1946 ~ Roy Wood (Ulysses Adrian Wood), Singer, songwriter, formed Electric Light Orchestra
.1947 ~ Minnie (Julia) Riperton, Singer
.1949 ~ Alan Berger, Bass with Southside Johnny & The Asbury Jukes
.1949 ~ Bonnie Raitt, American blues-rock singer and guitarist, won the Grammy Award in 1990, daughter of actor, John Raitt
.1954 ~ Ricki Lee Jones, Singer
.1958 ~ Terry Lee Miall, Drummer with Adam & The Ants
.1964 ~ Judy Garland and her daughter, Liza Minnelli, appeared together at the London Palladium. The program was shown on U.S. TV; and the LP, Live at the London Palladium became a classic on Capitol Records.
.1967 ~ The first solo movie by a Beatle opened in the U.S. It was John Lennon’s How I Won the War.
.2003 ~ Henry Phace Roberts, a tap dancer who performed with the Copasetics, the Five Blazers and the Three Rockets, died. He was 92. Roberts performed on television on “The Tonight Show” and “The Ed Sullivan S Show” and was in the films “Cabin in the Sky,” “Stormy Weather” and “The Cotton Club.” Born in Savannah, Ga., he was trained to tap dance on the streets as a child. Roberts began dancing professionally at 14, and performed for the last time at 87 with the Copasetics on a European tour.
1874 ~ Charles Ives, American composer
More information on Ives
• 1890 ~ Ferdinand “Jelly Roll” Morton, jazz pianist/composer
• 1913 ~ Grandpa (Louis Marshall) Jones, Country Music Hall of Famer, Grand Ole Opry, singer
• 1914 ~ Fayard Nicholas, American tap dancer, one-half of The Nicholas Brothers and actor (The Five Heartbeats)
• 1923 ~ Robert Craft, American conductor and writer
• 1935 ~ Jerry Orbach, American singer and actor for the musical theater
• 1937 ~ Wanda Jackson, Singer, songwriter
• 1939 ~ Jay Siegel, Singer with The Tokens
• 1939 ~ All the Things You Are was recorded by the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra on the Victor label. Jack Leonard was the featured vocalist.
• 1945 ~ Ric Lee, Drummer with Ten Years After
• 1950 ~ Tom Petty, Singer with The Traveling Wilburys
• 1951 ~ Al Greenwood, Keyboards with Foreigner
• 1955 ~ “Day-O. Day-ay-ay-ay-o!” One of the most popular of the Harry Belafonte hits was recorded for RCA Victor. Day-O didn’t make it to the pop charts for over a year, until January of 1957, after its name had been changed to The Banana Boat Song (Day-O).
• 1958 ~ Mark King, Bass, singer with Level 42
• 1958 ~ Ivo Pogorelić, Croatian pianist (1978 Casagrande winner)
• 1962 ~ With Halloween just around the corner, we remember that Bobby “Boris” Picket and the Crypt Kickers reached the top of the charts this day (for two weeks) with The Monster Mash. And someone, somewhere, has resurrected it every Halloween since.
This piece is now in Piano Maestro in the Halloween section and there is sheet music, if you are interested.
• 1962 ~ The musical, Mr. President, written by Irving Berlin, opened on Broadway. Mr. President ran for 265 performances.
• 1965 ~ The Beatles received a gold record for the single, Yesterday. This song marked the first time a cello was used in a pop hit.
• 2000 ~ Li Yundi, an 18-year-old virtuoso from China, has won Poland’s Frederic Chopin piano competition, becoming one of the youngest players to capture the prestigious international prize. Read the whole story
• 1979 ~ Following extensive renovation to return Radio City Music Hall to the look and feel of its 1931 art deco glory, the venerable New York City theatre reopened. “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” was the first live presentation.
• 1983 ~ Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton received a gold record to add to their collections for their smash, Islands in the Stream.
• 2000 ~ Julie London, American singer and actress (Nurse McCall-Emergency), died at the age of 74
• 2000 ~ Gwyneth “Gwen” Verdon, American actress, singer and dancer (Cotton Club, Sweet Charity), died at the age of 75
• 2006 ~ Anna Russell, English music satirist and composer, died at the age of 94
• 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.
• 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.
• 1941 ~ Fry Me Cookie, with a Can of Lard was recorded by the Will Bradley Orchestra on Columbia. Ray McKinley was featured.
• 1942 ~ Dave Lovelady, Drummer with The Fourmost
• 1943 ~ C.F. (Fred) Turner, Musician with Bachman~Turner Overdrive
• 1947 ~ Bob Weir (Hall), American rock guitarist and singer with The Grateful Dead
• 1953 ~ Tony Carey, Keyboards with Rainbow
• 1959 ~ Gary Kemp, Guitarist with Spandau Ballet, brother of musician Martin Kemp
• 1969 ~ Wendy Wilson, Singer with Wilson Phillips, daughter of Beach Boys singer, Brian Wilson
• 1972 ~ John C. Fogerty and Creedence Clearwater Revival called it a career … and the group disbanded. Fogerty continued in a solo career with big hits including, Centerfield and The Old Man Down the Road.
• 1976 ~ Memphis, TN disc jockey Rick Dees and his ‘Cast of Idiots’ made it all the way to number one on the Billboard Hot 100 with the immortal Disco Duck(Part 1). Dees is still around, but not as a recording artist. He’s a DJ in Los Angeles and is hosting several varieties of the Weekly Top 40 show, syndicated around the world.
• 1983 ~ George Liberace passed away. He was an American musician and television performer. Born in Menasha, Wisconsin, he was the elder brother and business partner of famed U.S. pianist Liberace.
• 1990 ~ Art Blakey passed away. He was an American jazz drummer and bandleader.
• 2000 ~ David Golub, American pianist and chamber music conductor, passed away at the age of 50. Born in Chicago, Golub grew up in Dallas, where he began learning the piano. In 1969 he moved to New York and spent his student years honing his technique at New York’s Juilliard School of Music. He also began conducting during summer breaks at Vermont’s Marlboro festival. In 1979, he accompanied violinist Isaac Stern on a tour of China. A film about the tour, “From Mao to Mozart,” won the 1980 Academy Award for Best Documentary. As a performer, Golub was perhaps best known for his work with violinist MarkKaplan and cellist Colin Carr in the trio they formed in 1982. In the late 1990s, Golub began cultivating his interest in opera. Under his leadership, the Padua Chamber Orchestra recorded some of Haydn’s least-known work for opera. An acclaimed chamber ensemble performer – most notably with the Golub-Kaplan-Carr Trio – Golub led the Padua Chamber Orchestra during the 1994-95 season and took it on tour in the United States in 1999. He is survived by his wife, Maria Majno.
• 2001 ~ Oscar-winning composer and lyricist Jay Livingston, whose collaboration with Ray Evans led to such hits as Silver Bells, Que Sera, Sera and MonaLisa, died of pneumonia. He was 86. Livingston’s songwriting partnership with Evans spanned 64 years. Often called the last of the great songwriters, Livingston and Evans had seven Academy Award nominations and won three – in 1948 for Buttons and Bows in the film The Paleface, in 1950 for Mona Lisa in Captain Carey, USA, and in 1956 for Que Sera, Sera in The Man Who Knew Too Much. They wrote the television theme songs for Bonanza and Mr. Ed, and were honored by the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers for the most performed music for film and TV for 1996. Livingston was born on March 28, 1915, in the Pittsburgh suburb of McDonald. He met Evans in 1937 at the University of Pennsylvania, where they were both students. The team’s final project was the recording, Michael Feinstein Sings the Livingston and Evans Song Book, due for 2002 release.
• 1894 ~ Albert Stoessel, American conductor and composer
• 1918 ~ Jerome Robbins (Rabinowitz), Academy Award-winning director of “West Side Story” in 1961, Tony Award-winning choreographer of “Fiddler on the Roof” in 1965, West Side Story in 1958, “High Button Shoes” in 1948, Tony Award-winning director of “Fiddler on the Roof” in 1965, Jerome Robbins’ Broadway in 1989.
• 1919 ~ Art Blakely, American jazz drummer, bandleader, composer
• 1932 ~ Dottie West (Dorothy Marie Marsh), Grammy Award-winning singer
• 1939 ~ One of the classics was recorded this day. Body and Soul, by jazz great Coleman Hawkins, was waxed on Bluebird Records. It’s still around on CD compilations.
• 1940 ~ Glenn Miller recorded Make Believe Ballroom Time for Bluebird Records at the Victor studios in New York City. It would become the theme song for Make Believe Ballroom on WNEW, New York, with host Martin Block. Block created the aura of doing a ‘live’ radio program, complete with performers (on records) like Harry James or Frank Sinatra, from the ‘Crystal Studios’ at WNEW. His daily program was known to everyone who grew up in the NYC/NJ/Philadelphia area in the 1940s and 1950s. Miller had been so taken with the show’s concept that he actually paid for the Make Believe Ballroom Time recording session himself and hired the Modernaires to join in.
• 1943 ~ Gene Watson, Singer
• 1946 ~ Viktor Tretyakov, Russian violinist
• 1948 ~ Starting this night and for 792 performances, the musical, “Where’s Charley?”, played on Broadway. It included the show-stopping hit song: Once in Love with Amy.
• 1949 ~ Daryl Hall (Hohl), Singer
• 1950 ~ Andre Woolfolk, Reeds with Earth, Wind and Fire
• 1955 ~ Lindy (Linda) Boone, Singer with The Boone Family, singer Pat Boone’s daughter
• 1967 ~ The Doors appeared at Danbury High School, Danbury, Connecticut. Before the group came on stage an announcer told the audience not to leave their seats during the performance or they would be escorted out of the venue. There was also a beauty pageant just prior to The Doors coming on stage.
• 1969 ~ One hit wonders Jane Birkin and Serge Gainsbourg were at No.1 on the UK singles chart with ‘Je t’aime… Moi non plus.’ Banned by many radio stations for its sexual content and sounds and for first time in the history of the show, the BBC’s Top Of The Pops producers refused to air the No. 1 song.
• 1996 ~ Johnny Costa, jazz pianist (Mr. Rogers), died at the age of 74
• 2001 ~ Beni Montresor, a Tony award-winning set and costume designer who was also known for his plays and children’s books, died at age 75. Montresor worked as a set designer at Rome’s Cinecitta Studios. In 1960, he moved to New York, where he designed sets and costumes for both Italian and New York theatrical and operatic productions and began to write and illustrate children’s books. In 1986, he won a Tony, Broadway’s highest award, for scenic design in The Marriage of Figaro.
• 1898 ~ Alfred Wallenstein, American cellist and conductor
• 1911 ~ Jo (Jonathan) Jones, Drummer, piano, reeds, trumpet. The first to minimize use of bass drum, keeping time on top cymbal. He played with Count Basie, Benny Goodman sextet.
• 1911 ~ Vaughn Monroe, Bandleader, singer
• 1922 ~ Martha Stewart (Haworth), Singer
• 1927 ~ Al Martino (Cini), Singer
• 1936 ~ Charles Dutoit, Symphony orchestra conductor
• 1940 ~ Artie Shaw’s orchestra recorded Hoagy Carmichael’s standard, Stardust, for Victor Records.
• 1942 ~ TIME magazine described Command Performance, which debuted this day, as “…the best wartime program in radio.” The show was originally produced by the U.S. War Department in cooperation with Armed Forces Radio Services specifically for those in the military overseas. It continued until 1949 and was reprised for more than three decades in syndication. Command Performance was hosted by Bob Hope, Bing Crosby, Don Wilson and Harry Von Zell and featured just about every major Hollywood and Broadway star.
• 1945 ~ Kevin Godley, Drummer, singer with 10cc
• 1949 ~ David Hope, Bass with Kansas
• 1950 ~ The Frank Sinatra Show debuted. It was the crooner’s first plunge into TV, the beginning of a $250,000 per year, five-year contract. Ben Blue, The Blue Family, the Whippoorwills and Axel Stordahl’s orchestra were regulars on the show.
• 1951 ~ John Cougar Mellencamp, Singer
• 1953 ~ Tico Torres, Drummer with Bon Jovi
• 1955 ~ Yo-Yo Ma, Chinese-born American cello virtuoso
• 1969 ~ Put on your headband, love beads, surfer’s cross and give the peace sign. It was on this day that The Youngbloods hit, Get Together, passed the million-selling mark to achieve gold record status.
• 1982 ~ “Cats”, another musical hit by Andrew Lloyd Webber, began a long Broadway run. It’s most memorable for its song, Memories. Cats ended on September 10, 2000.
• 1995 ~ Alanis Morissette went to No.1 on the US album chart with her third album Jagged Little Pill. The record produced six successful singles, including ‘You Oughta Know’, ‘Ironic’, ‘You Learn’, ‘Hand in My Pocket’, and ‘Head over Feet’ and went on to become the biggest selling album ever by a female artist with sales over 30m. Do you have a favorite track from the album?
• 2000 ~ Dennis Sandole, a jazz guitarist and mentor to John Coltrane, died at 87. Beginning in the early 1940s, Sandole played with some of the major swing-era bands of the time, including those led by Charlie Barnet, Boyd Raeburn, Tommy Dorsey and Ray McKinley. He also recorded film soundtracks and played at recording sessions for Frank Sinatra and Billie Holiday. Sandole was a mentor to jazz giantJohn Coltrane from 1946 to the early 1950s, teaching him music theory and exposing him to music from other cultures. He recorded some of his own music, including “Modern Music From Philadelphia” in 1956. In 1999 Cadence Jazz released “The Dennis Sandole Project,” which contained parts of a jazz ballet/opera he wrote in the 1960s and 70s called “Evenin’ Is Cryin'”. Sandole published a book, “Guitar Lore,” in 1981.
• 2003 ~ Arthur Berger, a composer, critic and teacher who was an influential analyst of contemporary music, died of heart failure. He was 91. In 1943, Berger began a decade as a music critic for the New York Herald Tribune. Later, he was one of the founders of the periodical Perspectives of New Music. In 1953, he published the first book-length study of composer Aaron Copland. Berger’s “Ideas of Order” premiered with the New York Philharmonic in 1952. His primary interest as a composer, however, was in chamber music and in music for the piano. His neoclassicalQuartet for Winds is probably his most performed work. Igor Stravinsky admired Berger’s music, and Copland wrote of its distinction, craftsmanship, individuality and idiosyncrasy. Over his career, Berger taught at Mills College in California, Brandeis University and the New England Conservatory of Music. Berger celebrated his 90th birthday last year by publishing a collection of essays, “Reflections of an American Composer.”
• 2003 ~ William Bennett, whose Manhattan music studio gave hope to those with aspirations of escaping the corporate world to become rock stars, Oct. 7 from injuries he received in a car accident. He was 49. Bennett bought Off Wall Street Jam in 1997. The TriBeCa studio became a place where he mentored other musicians and helped to arrange music engagements at city clubs. Bennett grew up on the Upper East Side in a show business family. He majored in music in college and played guitar in bands like the Immortal Primitives, which had opened for the Ramones. But he eventually wound up working at a photography agency and did not play guitar for years. A friend advised him to purchase the studio, which grew to more than 400 dues-paying members.
• 2003 ~ John Pagaard “Johnnie” Jessen, a former vaudeville saxophone player and University of Washington instructor who inspired pop musician Kenny G, died at the age of 94. At Jessen’s retirement from the university in 1989, Kenny Gorelick, who shortened his name to Kenny G for performing and recording, said 12 years of working with Jessen were crucial to his success. “I made a breakthrough after I started studying with Johnnie,” he said. “One morning I woke up and I could play twice as fast. He had this great tone on flute, and got me to the point where I was doubling on clarinet and flute.” The son of Danish immigrants, Jessen was playing the violin at parties by age 9 and soon afterward formed his first band, the Rinky Dinks. He went on to play on cruise ships crisscrossing the Pacific Ocean in the 1920s and on the RKO vaudeville circuit behind stars such as Betty Grable, Judy Garland and Sammy Davis, Jr. in the 1930s.