. 1787 ~ Franz Gruber, composer of Silent Night. The song was first performed on Christmas Eve 1818 at St Nicholas parish church in Oberndorf, a village in present-day Austria. A young priest, Father Joseph Mohr, had come to Oberndorf the year before. He had written the lyrics of the song “Stille Nacht” in 1816.
The melody was composed by Franz Xaver Gruber, schoolmaster and organist in the nearby village of Arnsdorf. Before Christmas Eve, Mohr brought the words to Gruber and asked him to compose a melody and guitar accompaniment for the Christmas Eve mass. It is unknown what inspired Mohr to write the lyrics, or what prompted him to create a new carol.
1896 ~ Virgil Thomson, American composer, conductor and music critic
Read quotes by and about Thomson
More information about Thomson
. 1924 ~ Paul Desmond, was an American jazz alto saxophonist and composer, best known for the work he did in the Dave Brubeck Quartet and for composing that group’s greatest hit, “Take Five”.
. 1925 ~ Derroll Adams, Country singer, played with Jack Elliott
. 1931 ~ Nat Adderley, Musician, cornet, mellophone, French horn, trumpet, brother of Cannonball Adderley
. 1941 ~ Percy Sledge, Singer
. 1949 ~ Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer, by Johnnie Marks, appeared on the music charts and became THE musical hit of the Christmas season. Although Gene Autry’s rendition is the most popular, 80 different versions of the song have been recorded, with nearly 20,000,000 copies sold.
. 1955 ~ Following a summer at the top of the American pop charts, Rock Around the Clock by Bill Haley and His Comets became the #1 song in Great Britain.
• 1695 ~ Henry Purcell, English composer (Indian Queen), died at the age of 36
. 1710 ~ Bernardo Pasquini died. He was an Italian composer of operas, oratorios, cantatas and keyboard music. A renowned virtuoso keyboard player in his day, he was one of the most important Italian composers for harpsichord between Girolamo Frescobaldi and Domenico Scarlatti, having also made substantial contributions to the opera and oratorio.
. 1877 ~ Thomas A. Edison, who really enjoyed the jazz he heard coming from his newest invention, told those gathered that he just invented the ‘talking machine’ (phonograph). On February 19, 1878, Edison received a patent for the device.
. 1904 ~ Coleman Hawkins, American jazz tenor saxophonist, solo with the Fletcher Henderson band, jazz bandleader
• 1912 ~ Eleanor Powell, American actress and tap dancer (Born to Dance, Born to Dance)
. 1931 ~ Malcolm Williamson, Australian composer
. 1933 ~ Jean Shepard, Country singer
. 1934 ~ Cole Porter’s Anything Goes opened at the Alvin Theatre in New York City. The show ran for 420 performances.
.1934 ~ Ella Fitzgerald won Amateur Night at Harlem’s Apollo Theater. Finding herself onstage as a result of pure chance after her name was drawn out of a hat, the aspiring dancer spontaneously decided to turn singer instead—a change of heart that would prove significant not only for herself personally, but also for the future course of American popular music.
. 1936 ~ James DePreist, Orchestra leader with the Oregon Symphony
1937 ~ Following Carnegie Hall performances in both 1906 and 1919, Arthur Rubinstein presented another historic and highly acclaimed performance at the arts center this day.
More information about Rubinstein
• 1938 ~ Leopold Godowsky, pianist/composer, died at the age of 68
. 1940 ~ Dr. John (‘Mac’ Malcolm John Rebennack), Organ, guitar, singer, songwriter
. 1940 ~ Natalia Makarova, Ballerina with the Kirov Ballet (now Saint Petersburg Ballet) from 1959 until 1970
. 1944 ~ Happy trails to you, until we meet again….The Roy Rogers Show was first heard on the Mutual Broadcasting System. Singing along with Roy (‘The King of the Cowboys’), were the Whippoorwills and The Sons of the Pioneers.
. 1944 ~ I’m Beginning to See the Light, the song that would become the theme song for Harry James and his orchestra, was recorded this day. The song featured the lovely voice of Kitty Kallen (Little Things Mean a Lot).
. 1948 ~ Lonnie (LeRoy) Jordan, Keyboards, singer
. 1950 ~ Livingston Taylor, American folk singer, songwriter and guitarist, brother of singer James Taylor
. 1952 ~ Lorna Luft, Singer, actress, daughter of singer-actress Judy Garland and producer Sid Luft; sister of singer-actress Liza Minnelli
. 1955 ~ The first lady of the American stage, Helen Hayes, was honored for her many remarkable years in show business, as the Fulton Theatre in New York City was renamed the Helen Hayes Theatre.
. 1959 ~ Following his firing from WABC Radio in New York the day before, Alan Freed refused “on principle” to sign a statement that he never received money or gifts (payola) for plugging records. Incidentally, few may remember, but Freed left WABC while he was on the air. He was replaced in mid~record by Fred Robbins, who later became a nationally~known entertainment reporter for Mutual Radio.
. 1962 ~ Leonard Bernstein broadcast his Young People’s Concert “Sound of a Hall” from the New York Philharmonic’s new home at Lincoln Center (now David Geffen Hall). He spoke about the science of sound; acoustics, vibration, sound waves, echo and reverberation. ÒWell, the best test of dynamic range I can think of is that great piece of fireworks – Tchaikovsky’s Overture 1812, because it begins as softly as possible with only 6 solo strings, and runs the whole dynamic range to a full orchestra, plus at the end, an extra brass band…plus the deafening roar of cannon plus the jangle of church bells…” We share with you this excerpt of Bernstein and the New York Philharmonic performing the 1812 Overture.
. 1981 ~ Olivia Newton-John started the first of 10 weeks at the top of the pop music charts when Physical became the music world’s top tune.
. 1990 ~ Instrument lovers have paid some pretty awesome prices for violins made by Antonio Stradivari. But a red Strad owned by the family of composer Felix Mendelssohn sold on this day for an all-time high of $1,700,00.
. 2001 ~ Ralph Burns, who won Academy Awards, an Emmy and a Tony as a music arranger after making a name for himself in jazz as a piano player in the Woody Herman band, died at the age of 79. Burns collected his first Academy Award for adapting the musical score of the 1972 movie “Cabaret.” He won another Oscar for adapting the musical score for “All That Jazz,” an Emmy for television’s “Baryshnikov on Broadway” and a Tony in 1999 for the Broadway musical “Fosse.” His other film credits included “Lenny,” “In The Mood,” “Urban Cowboy,” “Annie,” “My Favorite Year” and “The Muppets Take Manhattan.” He also collaborated with Jule Styne on “Funny Girl” and Richard Rodgers on “No Strings.” The Massachusetts native, who took up piano as a child, was playing in dance bands in Boston when he was 12, graduating to jazz orchestras by his teens. He worked with Herman band’s for 15 years as both a writer and piano player, composing some of the group’s biggest hits. Among them were “Apple Honey,” “Bijou” and the three-part “Summer Sequence.” “Early Autumn,” written later as a fourth movement for “Summer Sequence,” became a hit with singers after Johnny Mercer supplied words for it. Later, Burns worked in the studio with such popular singers as Tony Bennett, Johnny Mathis, Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin and Natalie Cole.
. 2003 ~ Teddy Randazzo, co-author of more than 600 songs for acts including The Temptations and Frank Sinatra, died at the age of 68. With co-author Bobby Weinstein and others, Randazzo wrote hits such as Goin’ Out of My Head,Hurt So Bad and It’s Gonna Take a Miracle for acts such as Little Anthony and the Imperials, The Lettermen, Linda Ronstadt, The Temptations and Sinatra. Randazzo began his career at age 15 as lead singer of the group The Three Chuckles. The group’s first hit, Runaround, rose to No. 20 on the Billboard charts and sold more than 1 million copies. Randazzo started a solo career in 1957 and found modest success over the next seven years before meeting Weinstein. The duo’s songs have been recorded by more than 350 artists, including Gloria Gaynor, Queen Latifah and Luther Vandross. They parted ways in 1970 and Weinstein became an executive for Broadcast Music Inc. and Randazzo became a producer for Motown Records.
1881 ~ Johannes Brahms gave the first performance of his Piano Concerto No.2 in Budapest.
.1899 ~ “Mezz” Mezzrow, American jazz clarinetist and saxophonist
.1929 ~ Piero Cappuccili, Italian baritone
.1930 ~ Ivan Moravec, Czech pianist
.1938 ~ 24-year-old Mary Martin made her Broadway stage debut in the musical comedy “Leave It to Me”. She brought down the house as she sang My HeartBelongs to Daddy. And the critics raved about New York’s bright new star. The following year brought Martin a top-ten hit with the same song. Martin suddenly found herself singing duets with Bing Crosby; starring on “Broadway in One Touch of Venus” in 1943; “Lute Song” in 1946; touring in “Annie Get Your Gun”; and then taking on what would become her immortal role, that of Nellie in “South Pacific”. South Pacific was one of Broadway’s biggest hits and the cast album was one of the first of its kind, also a big seller. Then came Mary’s stage and TV performances as Peter Pan. This would become her signature role, a memorable moment as the petite actress flew through the air with Tinkerbell and fought the dangerous Captain Hook. Broadway called to Mary Martin again in 1959 for “The Sound of Music” and once more in 1966 for “I Do, I Do”. Back in 1951, Mary Martin recorded a duet with a young man who was also destined for instant and long-term stardom. The song they sang together was Get Out Those Old Records. The twenty-year-old was her son, Larry Hagman, who later played J.R. Ewing. This is one man that Mary Martin didn’t want to wash out of her hair!
.1955 ~ Harry Belafonte recorded Jamaica Farewell and Come Back Liza for RCA Victor. The two tunes completed the Calypso album which led to Belafonte’s nickname, ‘Calypso King’.
.1967 ~ The first issue of Rolling Stone was published. John Lennon was on the cover. The magazine said it was not simply a music magazine but was also about “…the things and attitudes that music embraces.”
.1969 ~ Simon and Garfunkel recorded what would become their signature tune, ‘Bridge Over Troubled Water’ with a future member of Bread, Larry Knechtel on piano. Art wanted Paul to sing the song, but Paul insisted that Art’s voice was better suited for it. It was a decision that Paul would later say he regretted. The song won five awards at the 13th Annual Grammy Awards in 1971, including Grammy Award for Record of the Year and Song of the Year.
.1974 ~ Bachman Turner Overdrive went to No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet’. Randy Bachman stuttered through the lyrics of the demo recording as a private joke about his brother Gary, who had a speech impediment. The record company liked that take better than the non-stammering version and released it.
.2003 ~ Saxophonist Buddy Arnold, who performed with such jazz greats as Stan Kenton, Buddy Rich and Tommy Dorsey and co-founded a program to help musicians suffering from drug and alcohol abuse, died at the age of age 77. Born Arnold Buddy Grishaver, he began playing the saxophone at age 9. And by the time he was 16, he was touring as a professional sideman and performing at the Apollo Theater in Harlem with bandleader George Auld. After serving in the Army during World War II, Arnold joined the band of super-drummer Buddy Rich on a West Coast tour. Arnold earned his first recording credits in 1949 on the Mercury Records release of Gene Williams and the Junior Thornhill Band, and he toured with clarinetist Buddy DeFranco’s orchestra in 1951. But he soon descended into a decades-long struggle with drug addiction. Although he landed a recording contract with ABC Paramount in 1956 following an 18-month hospitalization, he was sentenced to prison in 1958 on an attempted burglary conviction. Pardoned two years later, he played with the Dorsey Band and toured with Stan Kenton. He later settled in Los Angeles and recorded four albums for Capitol Records. Arnold took a job in a drug treatment program after his early release from prison and went on to establish the Musician’s Assistance Program with his wife, Carole Fields, in 1992. The organization, dedicated to helping needy musicians obtain treatment for drug and alcohol addiction, has served more than 1,500 individuals during the past decade.
.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.
.1876 ~ Johannes Brahms’ 1st Symphony in c minor, Op. 68 premiered in Karlsruhe, Grand Duchy of Baden
.1922 ~ Paul Rovsing Olsen, Danish composer, ethnomusicologist and music critic
.1922 ~ Anthony Vazzana, American composer
.1938 ~ Harry Elston, Musician with Friends of Distinction
.1938 ~ You’re a Sweet Little Headache, from the movie “Paris Honeymoon”, was recorded by Bing Crosby on Decca.
.1940 ~ Delbert McClinton, Songwriter, singer
.1947 ~ Mike Smith, Musician, saxophone
.1954 ~ Florence Henderson, who was all of 20 years old, joined with Ezio Pinza and Walter Slezak in “Fanny”. The show lit up Broadway 888 times.
.1962 ~ Bob Dylan gave his first major concert outside of Greenwich Village. The Carnegie Hall solo appearance was not well attended.
.1963 ~ The Beatles played a Royal Command Performance as part of an evening of entertainment for Queen Elizabeth at the Prince of Wales Theatre in London. David Frost was the emcee.
.1984 ~ The Artist Formerly Known as Prince kicked off his fall tour in Detroit. He broke the record for sold-out performances at the 20,000-seat Joe Louis Arena. The previous record-holder was The Artist Still Known as Neil Diamond, in 1983.
.2000 ~ Vernel Fournier, who was a drummer for premier jazz acts such as Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie, passed away after suffering an aneurysm. He was 72. Fournier, a New Orleans native, took lessons from a Bourbon Street drummer and as a teen played in New Orleans. He performed with jazz singers including Nancy Wilson and Billy Eckstine. He moved from New York City, where he lived for more than 30 years, to Madison County in 1998.
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
Halloween (All Hallow’s Eve) is an ancient celebration dating back to the sixth or seventh centuries. This holiday combines the Druid autumn festival and the Christian celebration of Hallowtide, long associated with witches, ghosts, devils, spirits, magic … and all scary things that go bump in the night.
• 1896 ~ Ethel Waters, American blues and jazz singer
• 1906 ~ Louise Talma, American composer
• 1912 ~ Dale Evans (Frances Butts), Singer, songwriter of Happy Trails to You, actress, wife of ‘King of the Cowboys’ Roy Rogers
• 1927 ~ Anita Kerr, Pianist, singer, record producer, The Anita Kerr Singers, composer
• 1930 ~ In a rare recording, William ‘Count’ Basie sang with Bennie Moten’s orchestra, Somebody Stole My Gal, on Victor.
• 1934 ~ Tom Paxton, American folk singer, guitarist and songwriter
• 1947 ~ Russ Ballard, Singer, songwriter, guitar with Argent
• 1952 ~ Bernard Edwards, Bass with Chic
• 1953 ~ NBC televised “Carmen” on Opera Theatre in living color. It was the first major opera televised in anything other than black and white.
• 1956 ~ Tony Bowers, Bass with Simply Red
• 1961 ~ Larry Mullen, Grammy Award-winning drummer, with U2
• 1963 ~ Johnny Marr, Guitarist with The Smiths
• 1972 ~ Curtis Mayfield received a gold record for Freddie’s Dead from the movie, Superfly.
• 1984 ~ Caribbean Queen became a gold record for Billy Ocean. It was Ocean’s second hit song and the only one of his 11 hits to become a million-seller. He would have two other #1 songs and a pair of #2 hits, but none as big as Caribbean Queen (No More Love on the Run). Billy’s from Trinidad, and his real name is Leslie Sebastian Charles.
• 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.
• 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’sTotal 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.
• 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
More information about Hanson
• 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.
• 1934 ~ Cole Porter recorded his own composition titled, You’re the Top, from the show “Anything Goes”, on Victor.
• 1935 ~ A talented twelve-year-old sang on Wallace Beery’s NBC radio show on NBC. Judy Garland delighted the appreciative audience. The young girl would soon be in pictures and at the top of stardom. It would be only four years before Ms. Garland (George Jessel gave her the name, thinking it would be better than her own, Frances Gumm) captured the hearts of moviegoers everywhere with her performance as Dorothy in “The Wizard of Oz”.
• 1944 ~ Michael Piano, Singer with The Sandpipers
• 1946 ~ Keith Hopwood, Singer, guitarist with Herman’s Hermits
• 1952 ~ NBC~TV premiered Victory at Sea. The show was the first documentary film series to gain wide acceptance. Richard Rodgers wrote the score and Robert Russell Bennett orchestrated it. No Other Love, adapted from one of the songs in the score, became a hit for Perry Como in the summer of 1953.
• 1953 ~ Keith Strickland, Drummer with The B-52s
• 1956 ~ Walter Gieseking, German pianist/composer, died at the age of 60
• 1962 ~ The Rolling Stones consisting of Keith Richard, Mick Jagger, Brian Jones, pianist Ian Stewart and drummer Tony Chapman recorded their first demo tape at Curly Clayton Studios in Highbury, London. They recorded three songs, Jimmy Reed’s ‘Close Together’, Bo Diddley’s ‘You Can’t Judge A Book By The Cover’ and Muddy Waters’ ‘Soon Forgotten.’
• 1965 ~ The Beatles received MBE medals from the Queen of England, as they became Members of the British Empire. Ceremonies were held at Buckingham Palace. John Lennon returned his medal four years later in protest of Britain’s involvement in the Nigerian Civil War.
• 1971 ~ Memphis minister Al Green received a gold record for his single, Tired of Being Alone.
• 1984 ~ Barbra Streisand won multiplatinum certification for three albums that reached the four-million-dollar sales mark. “Greatest Hits, Vol. II”, “Guilty”, and “A Star is Born” (with Kris Kristofferson) were honored.
• 2001 ~ Laszlo Halasz, the first music director of the New York City Opera, died at the age of 96. Halasz became the opera’s first director in 1943. During his eight-year tenure, the New York City Opera became an important training ground for young singers. The company also became an important venue for new works. Born in Hungary, Halasz studied at the Liszt Academy in Budapest, where his teachers included Béla Bartók, Ernst von Dohnanyi, Leo Weiner and Zoltán Kodály. He made his professional debut as a pianist in 1928, but in 1931 decided to focus on conducting. He came to New York in 1936, and when the New York City Opera was formed in the fall of 1943, Halasz was appointed its music director. The company’s first season included productions of Puccini’s “Tosca,” Flotow’s “Martha” and Bizet’s “Carmen” Halasz conducted the company’s first American premiere, Strauss’ “Ariadne auf Naxos,” in 1946, and the opera’s first world premiere, of William Grant Still’s “Troubled Island,” with a libretto by Langston Hughes. But the opera’s board was uneasy with Halasz’s ventures into modern opera. When the board insisted in 1951 that Halasz submit his repertory plans for approval, he resigned. The board ultimately relented, but when Halasz became involved in union disputes later that year, the board fired him. After leaving City Opera, Halasz began a second career as a record producer. He also conducted opera at houses in Frankfurt, Barcelona, Budapest, London and South America. As a teacher, he was on the conducting faculty at the Peabody Conservatory, in Baltimore, and the Eastman School of Music, in Rochester, N.Y.
• 2001 ~ Herbert Weissenstein, a consultant who specialized in classical music, died at the age of 56. Weissenstein began his career in 1970 as public relations director for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. He moved on to the New York Philharmonic and in 1979 became director of development and strategic planning at Carnegie Hall. In 1984, he founded H.F. Weissenstein & Co., which specialized in consulting, directing seminars, and publishing articles in the fields of management and development. His clients included the Electronic Media Forum, the Folksbiene Yiddish Theater, the Manhattan Theater Club, the International Organization for the Transition of Professional dancers and the Brooklyn Botanic Garden.