On December 1 ~ in Music History

today

2019 Christmas Countdown: Sleigh Ride

• 1707 ~ Jeremiah Clarke, composer, died

• 1709 ~ Franz Xaver Richter, Austro-Moravian singer, violinist, composer, conductor and music theoretician

• 1879 ~ Gilbert and Sullivan’s operetta, H.M.S. Pinafore, opened. Arthur Sullivan conducted the orchestra while William Gilbert played the role of a sailor in the chorus and in the Queen’s Nay-vee.

• 1912 ~ Terence Beckles, pianist/teacher

• 1913 ~ Mary Martin, American singer and actress, primarily for the musical theater, Tony and Emmy Award-winning actress, mother of actor Larry Hagman

• 1924 ~ Lady Be Good opened in New York City. George Gershwin wrote the music while Fred and Adele Astaire were well-received by the show’s audience for their dancing talents.

• 1936 ~ Lou Rawls (Louis Allen), American Grammy Award-winning singer of popular music, TV regular on Dean Martin Presents

• 1938 ~ Sandy Nelson, Drummer

• 1939 ~ Diane Lennon, Singer with The Lennon Sisters on Lawrence Welk ShowJimmy Durante Presents the Lennon Sisters

• 1940 ~ Glenn Miller got a call from ASCAP (American Society of Composers and Publishers). He was informed that he couldn’t use his Moonlight Serenade as his band’s theme song. He had to use Slumber Song instead because of an ASCAP ban.

• 1945 ~ Bette Midler, American Grammy Award-winning pop-rock singer and actress

• 1945 ~ Burl Ives made his concert debut. He appeared at New York’s Town Hall. We lovingly listen every year for the voice of this old-time radio personality as the narrator and banjo-pickin’ snowman in TV’s Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.

• 1946 ~ Gilbert (Raymond) O’Sullivan, Singer

• 1950 ~ John Wesley Ryles, Singer

• 1950 ~ Ernest John Moeran passed away

• 1968 ~ Promises, Promises opened on Broadway. The play ran for 1,281 performances, earning $35,000 in profits each week of 1969. Dionne Warwick had a hit version of the title song.

• 1986 ~ Horace Heidt, orchestra leader (Swift Show Wagon), died at the age of 85

• 1989 ~ Alvin Ailey, US choreographer (Blues Suite, Revelations), died at the age of 58

• 1997 ~ Stéphane Grappelli, French jazz violinist who founded the Quintette du Hot Club de France, died at the age of 89

• 2012 ~ Galina Vishnevskaya, Russian soprano opera singer, died at the age of 85

On November 17 ~ in Music History

today

• 1726 ~ The first performance of J. S. Bach‘s Sacred Cantata No. 55 Ich armer Mensch, ich Sündenknecht on the 22nd Sunday following Trinity. Was part of Bach’s third annual Sacred Cantata cycle in Leipzig 1725-27

• 1848 ~ Frederic 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.

• 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

• 1876~ The first performance of Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky‘s March Slav in Moscow.

• 1877 ~ The first production of Gilbert and Sullivan’s opera, The Sorcerer, was presented, in London.

• 1888~ The first production of Tchaikovsky‘s Fifth Symphony in St. Petersburg.

• 1891 ~ Poland’s premier and premier ivory tickler, Ignace Jan Paderewski, made his American debut at Carnegie Hall in New York City. In later years, Paderewski, who suffered from arthritis, settled in Paso Robles, CA. The hot mineral baths located there eased his pain. He played only Steinway grand pianos custom-built to his specifications. In fact, five were made just for his use.

• 1919 ~ Hershy Kay, composer/arranger (Olympic Hymn)

• 1925 ~ Sir Charles Mackerras, Australian conductor

• 1930 ~ David Amram, American composer and French-horn player

• 1938 ~ Gordon Lightfoot, Canadian folk singer, songwriter and guitarist

• 1938 ~ Orchestra leader Kay Kyser, speaking to an audience at the College of the City of New York (CCNY) told of the “inner workings and artistic features of swing music.” It marked the first of a series of lectures on swing music presented by Kyser, who went on to present The Kollege of Musical Knowledge on radio.

• 1941 ~ Gene Clark, Singer, guitar with The Byrds

• 1942 ~ Bob Gaudio, Singer with The Royal Teens; The Four Seasons

• 1946 ~ Martin Barre, Guitarist with Jethro Tull

• 1950 ~ Roberta Peters filled in for the lead in Mozart’s Don Giovanni, making her debut at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City. She would become one of the Met’s most famous stars.

• 1959 ~ Heitor Villa-Lobos, Brazilian composer/pianist/conductor, died at the age of 72

• 1962 ~ The 4 Seasons, with Frankie Valli as lead singer, began a five-week run at the top of the tunedex with Big Girls Don’t Cry.

• 1967 ~ Ronald DeVoe, Singer with New Edition

• 1970 ~ Elton John recorded an album live, on what was WABC-FM in New York City. It marked the first time that a concert was aired live and recorded for release as aired. The LP was titled, 11/17/70.

• 1981 ~ Bob Eberly died

• 2001 ~ Jerry Jerome, a tenor sax player who was a featured soloist with the bands of Glenn Miller and Benny Goodman, died of leukemia. He was 89. One of the big names in the Big Band era, Jerome was a featured soloist with the Glenn Miller, Benny Goodman, Red Norvo and Artie Shaw orchestras. He then became a successful musical director and conductor on radio and television. Jerome also established a music business, scoring and arranging commercial jingles. Three years ago, Arbors Records released Jerome’s “Something Old, Something New.” The sequel recording, “Something Borrowed, Something Blue,” will be released in December. Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., Jerome started playing the sax while in high school. He attended the University of Alabama and went on the medical school, playing gigs at jazz clubs to earn tuition money. He joined Goodman’s orchestra at the height of its popularity in 1938. When Goodman broke up his band in 1940, Jerome joined Shaw. While with Shaw, he appeared in the film “Second Chorus,” with Fred Astaire and Burgess Meredith.

• 2003 ~ Arthur Conley, a 1960s soul singer and protege of Otis Redding’s, died at his home in the town of Ruurlo, in the eastern Netherlands. He was 57. Conley was born in Atlanta and started his recording career in 1959 as leader of the group Arthur and the Corvets. He was best known for his 1967 hit, Sweet Soul Music, which he co-wrote with Redding based on a number by Sam Cooke. Conley had several minor hits in the following two years. He moved to Europe in the early 1970s after several tours of the continent, deciding that he was “fed up with the pressure” in the United States, said Giesen. In the Netherlands, Conley appeared on television and radio, and ran an independent record label. In the last five years he was an adviser to The Original Sixties R&B and Soul Show, which sought to reproduce the sound and look of the heyday of soul.

• 2018 ~ Cyril Pahinui, a nationally recognized Hawaiian guitarist and singer who preserved and extended the tradition of slack-key guitar, died at the age of 68

On August 22 ~ in Music History

today

OCMS   1862 ~ Claude Debussy, French composer. Along with Maurice Ravel, he was one of the most prominent figures associated with Impressionist music, though he himself disliked the term when applied to his compositions.
More information about Debussy

• 1906 ~ The Victor Talking Machine Company of Camden, New Jersey began to manufacture the Victrola (record player). The hand-cranked unit, with horn cabinet, sold for $200. Records sold separately.

• 1917 ~ John Lee Hooker, American blues guitarist and singer, born in Clarksdale, Miss. He began his career in Detroit in 1948 with the release of Boogie Chillun, the biggest of his several hit records and a staple of both the blues and rock repertoires. He toured continually, and among “deep blues” artists, enjoyed an unusually successful career, appearing in concerts and on recordings with many of the leading figures in rock. He was inducted into the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame in 1991.

OCMS  1928 ~ Karlheinz Stockhausen, German composer
More information about Stockhausen
Read quotes by and about Stockhausen

• 1926 ~ Bob Flanigan, Singer with The Four Freshmen

• 1932 ~ The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) began its first experimental TV broadcast in England.

• 1938 ~ Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers appeared, dancing, on the cover of LIFE magazine, published on this day.

• 1938 ~ Count Basie recorded the classic swing tune, Jumpin’ at the Woodside, for Decca Records.

• 1942 ~ Joe Chambers, Musician: guitar, singer with The Chambers Brothers

• 1950 ~ Sam Neely, Singer

• 1960 ~ Debbi Peterson, Drummer, singer with Bangles

• 1961 ~ Roland Orzabal, Singer, guitarist

• 2002 ~ Frederick Selch, an advertising executive and magazine publisher who collected hundreds of antique musical instruments, died at the age of 72.
Selch began collecting almost 50 years ago and owned more than 300 musical instruments by 1977.
In that year, he founded the Federal Music Society, an organization dedicated to performing music from the Colonial-Federal period. The group’s 26 players used instruments in Selch’s collection to perform in more than 70 concerts.
Selch was also the owner, editor and publisher of Ovation, a monthly magazine about classical music, from 1983 to 1989. He produced the Broadway musical “Play Me a  Country Song” in 1982, and in the past 10 years was involved in a series of American  Music Festivals at Illinois Wesleyan University.
Selch, who received a master’s degree in radio-television production from Syracuse University, worked at the J. Walter Thompson advertising agency from 1955 to 1974.
He is to be awarded a posthumous doctorate from the American Studies program at New York University.

• 2002 ~ Richard Lippold, a sculptor whose abstract works are featured at New York’s Avery Fisher Hall and at Harvard University, died. He was 87. Lippold created giant metal abstractions, many of which are suspended by wires so they appear to be hovering or moving through space.
His piece World Tree, a 27-foot structure of straight and circular metal tubes that resembles a radio antenna, stands on the Harvard University campus.
He is also known for Ad Astra, a double spire that rises 115 feet in front of the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, and Orpheous and Apollo, a constellation of bronze bars connected by wires in the lobby of Avery Fisher Hall in Lincoln Center.
Lippold studied industrial design, piano and dance at the Art Institute of Chicago and the University of Chicago. He worked as a freelance industrial designer for several years before teaching art at the University of Michigan.
He later taught at Goddard College in Plainfield, Vt., and Hunter College in New York.

• 2018 ~ Ed King, former guitarist for Lynyrd Skynyrd who co-wrote ‘Sweet Home Alabama,’ died at the age of 68

On July 16 ~ in Music History

ice-cream-day

It’s National Ice Cream Day!

 

 

Be sure your student reads and listens to Today’s Daily Listening Assignment

 

 

 

• 1698 ~ Cristoph Kaldenbach, Composer, died at the age of 84

• 1725 ~ Georg Simon Lohlein, Composer

• 1728 ~ Henri Moreau, Composer

• 1729 ~ Johann David Heinichen, Composer, died at the age of 46

• 1762 ~ Jacques Hotteterre, Composer, died at the age of 87

• 1782 ~ Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s opera “Das Entführung aus dem Serail,” premiered in Vienna

• 1822 ~ Luigi Arditi, Violinist and composer

• 1834 ~ Carlo Angeloni, Composer

• 1855 ~ Charles Francis Abdy Williams, Composer

• 1858 ~ Eugène Ysaÿe, Belgian violinist, conductor and composer. He taught fellow violinist Yehudi Menuhin for a short period.

• 1868 ~ Louis-Francois Dauprat, Composer, died at the age of 87

• 1901 ~ Fritz Mahler, Composer

• 1909 ~ John Edward “Teddy” Buckner, Trumpeter

• 1911 ~ Ginger Rogers, Dancer

 

Ginger and Fred Astaire

 

Ginger Rogers at 92 years old, dancing with her 29-year-old great-grandson. The first minute or so is a bit of a slow intro.. but stick it out, she is incredible. Most of us would love to be able to move like this at 22, let alone 92! (You do have to wonder whether she has bionic knees).

• 1912 ~ Ray Barr, American pianist on the Vincent Lopez Show

• 1916 ~ Ludwig P Scharwenka, German Composer, died at the age of 70

• 1925 ~ Cal Tjader, Vibraharpist

• 1928 ~ Bella Davidovich, Soviet-born American pianist

• 1930 ~ John Everett Watts, Composer

• 1932 ~ John Chilton, Jazz trumpeter

• 1933 ~ Sollie McElroy ~ Rhythm and Blues singer

• 1934 ~ The NBC Red radio network premiered the musical drama, Dreams Come True. It was a show about baritone singer Barry McKinley and his novelist sweetheart.

• 1936 ~ Buddy Merrill, American guitarist on the Lawrence Welk Show

• 1939 ~ William Bell, American singer

• 1940 ~ Tony Jackson, British rock bassist, vocalist with the Searchers

• 1947 ~ Tom Boggs ~ rock drummer (Box Tops)

• 1948 ~ Pinchas Zuckerman, Israeli violinist, violist and conductor

• 1948 ~ Ruben Blades, Singer

• 1949 ~ Alan “Fitz” Fitzgerald, Rock keyboardist, vocalist

• 1949 ~ Ray Major, Rock guitarist

• 1952 ~ Stewart Copeland, Drummer

• 1956 ~ Ian Curtis ~ English rock vocalist (Joy Division-Transmission)

• 1972 ~ Giorgio Nataletti, Composer, died at the age of 65

• 1972 ~ Max Zehnder, Composer, died at the age of 70

• 1981 ~ Harry Chapin, Folk vocalist, died in a car crash in New York. Chapin was 38. His hit songs included Taxi, W-O-L-D and the million-seller, Cat’s in the Cradle. He was a champion of the hungry and homeless and organized a massive effort to provide food for the needy. This was his legacy to the world; his work continues by other performers.

• 1984 ~ Billy Williams, Singer in Your Show of Shows, died at the age of 73

• 1985 ~ Wayne King, Orchestra leader, Wayne King Show, died at the age of 84

• 1986 ~ Columbia Records announced that after 28 years with the label, the contract of country star Johnny Cash would not be renewed. Cash recorded 13 hits on the pop music charts from 1956 to 1976, all but four on Columbia. The others were on Sam Phillips’ Memphis-based label, Sun. Cash’s biggest hit for Columbia was A Boy Named Sue in 1969.

• 1989 ~ Herbert von Karajan, Austrian conductor, died at the age of 81. He was one of the great conductors of the 20th century, dominating the post-war world of music in the concert hall, opera house and recording studio.

• 1994 ~ 3 Tenors, Placido Domingo, Luciano Pavarotti and José Carreras, perform in LA

• 1995 ~ Charles Bruck, Hungarian-French-American conductor, died at the age of 83

• 1996 ~ John Panozzo, Drummer, died at the age of 48

On June 22 in Music History

today

 

 

Be sure your student reads and listens to Today’s Daily Listening Assignment

 

• 1611 ~ Pablo Bruna, Composer

• 1613 ~ Lambert Pietkin, Composer

• 1684 ~ Francesco Onofrio Manfredini, Composer

• 1735 ~ Pirro Conte d’ Albergati Capacelli, Composer, died at the age of 71

• 1741 ~ Joseph-Hector Fiocco, Composer, died at the age of 38

• 1741 ~ Alois Luigi Tomasini, Composer

• 1742 ~ Heinrich Gottfried Reichard, Composer

• 1745 ~ Hubert Renotte, Composer, died at the age of 41

• 1754 ~ Nicholas Siret, Composer, died at the age of 91

• 1824 ~ Frederic Louis Ritter, Composer

• 1830 ~ Theodor Leschetizky, Polish pianist and one of the greatest piano teachers of his time.

• 1843 ~ Gabriele Prota, Composer, died at the age of 88

• 1859 ~ Frank Heino Damrosch, Musician, teacher and author, founder of the Institute of Music

• 1883 ~ Jose Rolon, Composer

• 1900 ~ Jennie Tourel, Russian-born American mezzo-soprano

• 1905 ~ Walter Leigh, Composer

• 1910 ~ Sir Peter Pears, British tenor
More information about Pears

• 1921 ~ Gower Champion, Tony Award-winning choreographer: 42nd Street, 1981; The Happy Time, 1968; Hello Dolly! in 1964; Bye-Bye Birdie, 1961; Lend an Ear, 1949

• 1926 ~ Ruth Zechlin, Composer

• 1926 ~ Hermann Suter, Composer, died at the age of 56

• 1930 ~ Roy Drusky, DJ, songwriter

• 1932 ~ Michael Horvit, Composer

• 1936 ~ Kris Kristofferson, American country-rock singer, songwriter and actor

• 1939 ~ Bing Crosby and Connee Boswell joined in song to perform An Apple for the Teacher, on Decca Records.

• 1944 ~ Peter Asher, British singer with Peter and Gordon

• 1947 ~ Don Henley, Drummer and singer with the Eagles

• 1947 ~ Howard Kaylan (Kaplan), Singer with The Turtles

• 1948 ~ Todd Rundgren, Singer

• 1949 ~ Alan Osmond, Singer with The Osmonds and The Osmond Brothers

• 1950 ~ Julio Fonseca, Composer, died at the age of 65

• 1959 ~ Along Came Jones by the Coasters peaked at #9

• 1959 ~ Class by Chubby Checker peaked at #38

• 1959 ~ The Battle of New Orleans, by Johnny Horton, started week number four. The song was number one for a total of six weeks. It was Horton’s only number one record and million-seller. He had big hits, however, with movie music: Sink the Bismarck and North to Alaska (from the film by the same title, starring John Wayne) — both in 1960. Horton, from Tyler, TX, married Billie Jean Jones, Hank Williams’ widow. Tragically, Johnny Horton was killed in a car crash on November 5, 1960.

• 1963 ~ “Little” Stevie Wonder, 13 years old, released Fingertips. It became Wonder’s first number one single on August 10th. Wonder had 46 hits on the pop and R&B music charts between 1963 and 1987. Eight of those hits made it to number one.

• 1964 ~ Barbra Joan Streisand signed a 10-year contract with CBS-TV worth about $200,000 a year. Both CBS and NBC had been bidding for Streisand’s talents.

• 1968 ~ Herb Alpert used his voice and his trumpet to run to the top of the pop music charts. This Guy’s in Love with You became the most popular song in the nation this day. It would rule the top of the pop music world for four weeks. It was the only vocal by Alpert to make the charts, though his solo instrumentals with The Tijuana Brass scored lots of hits. Alpert performed on 19 charted hits through 1987.

• 1968 ~ Here Come Da Judge by The Buena Vistas peaked at #88

• 1969 ~ Judy Garland passed away

• 1972 ~ “Man of La Mancha” opened at Beaumont Theater New York City for 140 performances

• 1973 ~ Jacques Leon Wolfe, Composer, died at the age of 77

• 1973 ~ George Harrison released Living in the Material World

• 1974 ~ Darius Milhaud, French Composer, died at the age of 81 He was best known for the wide variety of styles in which he composed. His ballet La Creation du Monde” uses jazz themes.
More information about Milhaud

• 1976 ~ “Godspell” opened at Broadhurst Theater New York City for 527 performances

• 1979 ~ Little Richard quit rock & roll for religious pursuit

• 1987 ~ Fred Astaire died at the age of 88. He starred in a large number of stage musicals and films, 10 with dancing partner Ginger Rogers.

• 1988 ~ Dennis Day (Eugene Denis McNulty) passed away

• 1989 ~ Bengt Viktor Johansson, Composer, died at the age of 74

• 1990 ~ Billy Joel, American pianist, singer-songwriter, and composer, performed a concert at Yankee Stadium

• 2015 ~ Albert Evans, retired principal dancer with New York City Ballet, died at 46.

 

• 2015 ~ James Horner, American film composer (Titanic, Apollo 13, Casper), died in a plane crash at the age of 61

 

 

On April 3 in Music History

today

. 1850 ~ Vaclav Jan Krtitel Tomasek, organist/pianist/composer, died at the age of 75

. 1859 ~ Reginald De Koven, Composer

. 1895 ~ Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco, Italian-born American composer

. 1897 ~ Johannes Brahms, German composer and pianist, died. He wrote four symphonies as well as concerti for piano and violin and highly-esteemed chamber works.

. 1924 ~ Doris Day, Singer

. 1942 ~ Wayne Newton, American singer of popular music

. 1944 ~ Tony Orlando, Singer, Tony Orlando and Dawn

. 1948 ~ Garrick Ohlsson, American pianist, winner of Poland’s Frederic Chopin piano competition in 1970. More about this competition.

. 1949 ~ Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis debuted on radio in an NBC program that ran until 1952.

. 1950 ~ Kurt Weil, German composer, died, best known for his “Threepenny Opera” and for his collaboration with actress and singer Lotte Lenya whom he married in 1926.

. 1952 ~ Harry Belafonte recorded his first songs for RCA Victor at Manhattan Center in New York City.

. 1952 ~ Hugo Winterhalter backed up the singer with an 18-piece orchestra. Among the sides recorded were Dogs A-Roving and Chimney Smoke.

. 1955 ~ Fred Astaire appeared on television for the first time on The Toast of the Town, with host, Ed Sullivan. Already an established dancer in films, Astaire was quick to become a TV sensation as well.

. 1965 ~ Bob Dylan appeared on the pop music charts for the first time. Subterranean Homesick Blues entered the Top 40 at number 39. The song stayed on the charts for eight weeks. Dylan would chart a total of 12 singles on the pop charts between 1965 and 1979. He appeared in the films Don’t Look Back, Eat the Document and Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid. He made the film Renaldo and Clara in 1978. Dylan co-starred in the film Hearts of Fire in 1987. He became a member of the Traveling Wilburys and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1988. Dylan won the Grammy’s Lifetime Achievement Award in 1991.

. 1972 ~ Ferde Grofe, US composer (Grand Canyon Suite), died at the age of 80
More about Grofe

. 1986 ~ For the first time in six years, major record companies decided to raise prices – between three and five percent.

. 1986 ~ Peter Pears, British operatic tenor, died. He was a collaborator with composer Benjamin Britten and first interpreter of many of Britten’s works, notably “Peter Grimes.”

. 1990 ~ Sarah Vaughan passed away

. 1999 ~ Lionel Bart, British composer of the musical “Oliver!,” died aged 68.

. 2001 ~ Lester “Big Daddy” Kinsey, a blues singer-guitarist known for his croaky voice, died of prostate cancer. He was 74. Kinsey and his sons, Kenneth, Donald and Ralph, became known as “Big Daddy” Kinsey and His Fabulous Sons. The sons now form the Gary-based Kinsey Report and record for Alligator Records, a Chicago blues label. The Kinsey Report has toured with the likes of the Allman Brothers Band. In the early ’90s, the elder Kinsey experienced one of his career highlights with I Am the Blues, a major-label release on Polygram. The album boasted a host of blues standouts backing up Kinsey, including Buddy Guy, James Cotton, Sugar Blue and Pinetop Perkins.

. 2015 ~ Andrew Porter died.  He was a renowned music critic and scholar and translator of opera.

On January 22 in Music History

polka-dots

 

 

. 1886 ~ John J. Becker, American composer

. 1889 ~ The Columbia Phonograph Company was formed in Washington, DC.

. 1901 ~ Hans Erich Apostel, German-born Austrian composer

. 1904 ~ George Balanchine (Georgi Balanchivadze), Choreographer of Apollo, Orpheus, Firebird, Swan Lake, The Nutcracker. He founded School of American Ballet and New York City Ballet. He was married to Tanaquil Le Clercq.

. 1907 ~ The Richard Strauss opera, “Salome”, was featured with the Dance of the Seven Veils. It was copied by vaudeville performers. Soon, performances of the opera were banned at the Metropolitan Opera House.

. 1916 ~ Henri Dutilleux, French composer

. 1920 ~ William Warfield, singer (Show Boat)

. 1924 ~ James Louis “J.J.” Johnson, Trombonist, composer and bandleader. He was one of first to use the trombone in modern jazz

. 1931 ~ Clyde McCoy and his orchestra recorded Sugar Blues. The tune became McCoy’s theme song, thanks to its popularity on Columbia Records, and later on Decca, selling over a million copies.

. 1935 ~ Sam Cooke, American rhythm-and-blues singer

. 1949 ~ Steve Perry, Drummer with Radio Stars

. 1953 ~ Myung-Whun Chung, Seoul South Korea, pianist/conductor (Chung Trio)

. 2002 ~ Pete Bardens, a keyboardist who played alongside such pop stars as Mick Fleetwood, Ray Davies, Rod Stewart and Van Morrison, died of lung cancer. He was 57. He was known for his progressive and New Age rock style on synthesizer, electric piano and organ. In the 1960s, the London-born Bardens played in the Blues Messengers with Davies, who later went on to form The Kinks; Shotgun Express with Stewart; Them with Morrison; and the group Cheynes with Fleetwood and Peter Green, who went on to form Fleetwood Mac. In 1972, Bardens formed the progressive rock band Camel and stayed with it through the late 1970s. In 1978, he began a successful solo career, releasing several well-received records, including “Speed of Light”, and also played on Morrison’s album “Wavelength” and accompanied him on a world tour. Barden continued to compose, produce and perform music through the 1990s, appearing in Europe with his group Mirage.

. 2004 ~ Milt Bernhart, a big band trombonist known for his solo on Frank Sinatra’s I’ve Got You Under My Skin, died. He was 77. During his three-decade career, Bernhart played in bands led by Benny Goodman, Henry Mancini and others. He was performing in Howard Rumsey’s Lighthouse All-Stars when Marlon Brando arranged for the band to play in the 1954 film The Wild One. Bernhart then became an in-studio musician for Columbia and other film and television studios, and in 1956 added a memorable solo to Sinatra’s I’ve Got You Under My Skin. Born in Valparaiso, Ind., Bernhart was drafted into the Army and was to be sent overseas during World War II before he was transferred to the service’s band. After his music career wound down in 1973, he bought Kelly Travel Service in Los Angeles. He created the Big Band Academy of America in 1986 and planned to retire as the organization’s founding president in March.

. 2004 ~ Ann Miller, a childhood dance prodigy who fast-tapped her way to movie stardom that peaked in 1940s musicals like “On the Town”, “Easter Parade” and“Kiss Me Kate”, died of lung cancer. She was 81. Miller’s film career peaked at MGM in the late 1940s and early ’50s, but she honed her chops into her 60s, earning millions for “Sugar Babies”, a razzmatazz tribute to the era of burlesque featuring Mickey Rooney. Miller’s legs, pretty face and fast tapping (she claimed the record of 500 taps a minute) earned her jobs in vaudeville and nightclubs when she first came to Hollywood. Her early film career included working as a child extra in films and as a chorus girl in a minor musical, “The Devil on Horseback”. An appearance at the popular Bal Tabarin in San Francisco won a contract at RKO studio, where her name was shortened to Ann. Her first film at RKO, “New Faces of 1937”, featured her dancing. She next played an acting hopeful in “Stage Door”, with Katharine Hepburn, Ginger Rogers, Lucille Ball and Eve Arden.

When Cyd Charisse broke a leg before starting “Easter Parade” at MGM with Fred Astaire, Miller replaced her. That led to an MGM contract and her most enduring work. She was teamed with Gene Kelly and Frank Sinatra in “On the Town”, Red Skelton in “Watch the Birdie”, and Bob Fosse in “Kiss Me Kate“. Other MGM films included: “Texas Carnival”, “Lovely to Look At”, “Small Town Girl”, “Deep in My Heart”, “Hit the Deck” and “The Opposite Sex.” The popularity of musicals declined in the 1950s, and her film career ended in 1956. Miller remained active in television and the theater, dancing and belting songs on Broadway in “Hello, Dolly” and “Mame”. In later years, she astounded audiences in New York, Las Vegas and on the road with her dynamic tapping in “Sugar Babies.” The show opened on Broadway in 1979 and toured for years. In 1990, she commented that “Sugar Babies” had made her financially independent. While her career in Hollywood prospered, Miller became a regular figure in the town’s nightlife, and she caught the eye of Louis B. Mayer, all-powerful head of MGM. After dating, she declined to marry him because her mother would not allow it. She later married and divorced steel heir Reese Milner and oilmen William Moss and Arthur Cameron.

. 2004 ~ Dick Rodgers, an insurance salesman known as the “Polka King” when he hosted a regional television show from the 1950s to the 1970s, died. He was 76. Rodgers’ television show was on the air from 1955-78, starting on WMBV in Marinette, which later moved to Green Bay and became WLUK-TV. The program was shown on 17 Midwestern stations at its height. Rodgers’ accomplishments included membership in the International Polka Music Hall of Fame (1976) and in the World Concertina Congress Hall of Fame (1996). He also was named Orchestra Leader of the Year by the Wisconsin Orchestra Leaders Association in 1967.