November 16 ~ in Music History

today

• 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
More information about Handy

• 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
Read quotes by and about Hindemith
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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.

November 14 ~ in Music History

today

.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

OCMS 1900 ~ Aaron Copland, American composer and conductor
Read quotes by and about Copland
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.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.

November 7 ~ in Music History

 

Happy Diwali!

Diwali is the Hindu festival of lights celebrated every year in autumn in the northern hemisphere (spring in southern hemisphere).  One of the most popular festivals of Hinduism, it spiritually signifies the victory of light over darkness, good over evil, knowledge over ignorance, and hope over despair.

As per India’s official holiday calendar, Diwali in 2017 will be on October 19, coinciding with the 15th day of Kartik, the holiest month in the Hindu lunar calendar.

 

.1916 ~ Joe Bushkin, American jazz pianist (A Couple of Joes)

.1922 ~ Al Hirt, Trumpeter, Flight of the Bumble Bee as theme song for TV’s The Green Hornet, played in singer Don Gibson’s band, regular on Make Your Own Kind of Music

.1926 ~ Dame Joan Sutherland, Australian coloratura soprano

.1930 ~ The Waltz You Save for Me, by ‘The Waltz King’ himself, Wayne King, was recorded on Victor. It became King’s theme.

.1937 ~ Mary Travers, American folk singer, Mary of Peter, Paul and Mary

.1938 ~ Dee (Delectus) Clark, Singer

.1942 ~ Johnny Rivers (John Ramistella), Singer

.1943 ~ Joni Mitchell, Canadian folk-rock singer, songwriter and guitarist, 1970 UK No.11 single ‘Big Yellow Taxi’, 1974 US No.7 single ‘Help Me’. She wrote ‘Both Sides Now’ a hit for Judy Collins and ‘Woodstock’ a hit for Crosby Stills Nash and Young and Matthews Southern Comfort. Mitchell’s work is highly respected by critics, and she has deeply influenced fellow musicians in a diverse range of genres.

.1947 ~ Billboard magazine began listing the top 15 popular records. Only 10 songs had been featured previously.

.1956 ~ Elvis Presley hit the charts with Love Me. The song was the first million-seller to make the charts without being released as a single. It was, instead, an EP (extended play) 45 rpm, with three other songs on it: Rip It Up, Paralyzed and When My Blue Moon Turns to Gold Again on RCA Victor.

.1970 ~ Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is? was released by Columbia. It became the third tune by Chicago to hit the pop music charts. Make Me Smile and 25 or 6 to 4 were previous hits. Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is? made it to #7 on the charts, January 7, 1971.

.1976 ~ Gone With the Wind was aired (over two nights) on NBC-TV. The showing was the highest-rated TV show in history. 65 percent of all viewers turned on their sets to watch Scarlet O’Hara and Rhett Butler.

.1978 ~ Nick Gilder, Singer

.1979 ~ The Rose, starring Bette Midler, got star treatment with a world premiere in Los Angeles. The movie was modeled after the life of Janis Joplin.

.2000 ~ Doug Nelson, bassist in teen blues star Jonny Lang’s band, was killed when he was hit by a pickup truck on a rural highway in northern Minnesota. He was 46. Nelson began playing professionally at age 15. He worked in Los Angeles for a time and toured with Olivia Newton-John, before returning in the late 1980s to the Twin Cities, where he played with local bands. He joined Lang’s group about three years ago.

.2000 ~ Columbia Legacy and Verve released a five-CD box set companion titled “Ken Burns Jazz: The Story of American Music” in addition to 22 individual artist discs.
Read the news item

.2001 ~ Gene Wooten, a dobro player who backed Patty Loveless, the Osborne Brothers, Wilma Lee Cooper and other country stars, died from complications of lung cancer. He was 49. “He was like a teacher for everyone,” said mandolinist Roland White. “He was like our guru. He just helped everybody in music. … There was no ego ever – ever – and that’s hard to find.” Wooten, a native of Franklinton, N.C., attended Appalachian State University in Boone, N.C., where he began his career in music. He moved to Nashville in 1977 and was hired by Cooper. Wooten played on the Mountain Soul album by Loveless this year. He was voted best dobro player three times by the Society for the Preservation of Bluegrass in America.

.2004 ~ Howard Keel, American actor, singer and president of the Screen Actors Guild (7 Brides for 7 Brothers, Kiss Me Kate), died at the age of 87

.2016 ~ Leonard Cohen, Canadian writer and singer-songwriter (Death of Ladies Man), died at the age of 82

.2018 ~ Francis Lai, the French composer best known for his themes for the movies “Love Story” and “A Man and a Woman,” died at the age of 86.

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.

Jelly Roll Morton’s Birthday

jelly-grandpa

 

 

Jelly Roll Morton, born Ferdinand Joseph La Menthe in 1885, was one of the most influential composers of the jazz era, bridging an important gap between ragtime, blues, and jazz. In a sense, he was the first great jazz composer.

His career began in New Orleans, where he began to experiment with a unique blend of blues, ragtime, Creole, and Spanish music in bordellos as a piano player. Along with being a musician, he also worked as a gambler, pool shark, vaudeville comedian, and was known for his flamboyant personality and diamond front tooth.

Morton became successful when he started making what would be some of the first jazz recordings in 1923 with “the New Orleans Rhythm Kings”. Whether he played on the West Coast, New Orleans, or in Chicago, his recordings were always very popular. He joined the group “the Red Hot Peppers” in 1924 and made several classic albums with the Victor label.

Nothing but success came to him until 1930, when “Hot Jazz” began to die out, and big bands began to take over. Morton died in 1941, claiming that a voodoo spell was the cause of his demise.

 

   anniversary of Morton’s death

  Read quotes by and about Morton

 

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.

 

Happy Birthday, Jelly Roll!

jelly-grandpa

 

 

Jelly Roll Morton, born Ferdinand Joseph La Menthe in 1885, was one of the most influential composers of the jazz era, bridging an important gap between ragtime, blues, and jazz. In a sense, he was the first great jazz composer.

His career began in New Orleans, where he began to experiment with a unique blend of blues, ragtime, Creole, and Spanish music in bordellos as a piano player. Along with being a musician, he also worked as a gambler, pool shark, vaudeville comedian, and was known for his flamboyant personality and diamond front tooth.

Morton became successful when he started making what would be some of the first jazz recordings in 1923 with “the New Orleans Rhythm Kings”. Whether he played on the West Coast, New Orleans, or in Chicago, his recordings were always very popular. He joined the group “the Red Hot Peppers” in 1924 and made several classic albums with the Victor label.

Nothing but success came to him until 1930, when “Hot Jazz” began to die out, and big bands began to take over. Morton died in 1941, claiming that a voodoo spell was the cause of his demise.

 

   anniversary of Morton’s death

  Read quotes by and about Morton