December 28 ~ in Music History

today

• 1812 ~ Julius Rietz, German composer, conductor and cellist

• 1896 ~ Roger Sessions, American composer

• 1905 ~ Earl “Fatha” Hines, American jazz pianist and bandleader, a classic duet with Louis Armstrong was Weather Bird, songwriter

• 1911 ~ San Francisco established its own symphony orchestra as part of its comeback from a disastrous earthquake.

• 1921 ~ Johnny Otis (Veliotes), ‘Inventor of R&B’, composer, songwriter, drummer vibes with The Johnny Otis Show

• 1930 ~ Edmund Thigpen, Jazz Drummer

• 1932 ~ Dorsey Burnette, Singer, brother of singer Johnny Burnette

• 1938 ~ Charles Neville, Saxophone, flute, percussion with The Neville Brothers

• 1937 ~ Anniversary of Maurice Ravel’s death.

• 1943 ~ Bobby Comstock, Singer

• 1944 ~ The musical, On the Town, opened in New York City for a run of 462 performances. It was Leonard Bernstein’s first big Broadway success. The show’s hit song, New York, New York, continues to be successful.

• 1946 ~ Edgar Winter, American rock vocalist, saxophonist, guitarist and keyboardist

• 1946 ~ Carrie Jacobs Bond passed away.  She was an American singer, pianist, and songwriter who composed some 175 pieces of popular music from the 1890s through the early 1940s

• 1947 ~ Dick Diamonde (Dingeman Van Der Sluys), Bass with The Easybeats

• 1950 ~ Alex Chilton, Guitarist, singer

• 1952 ~ Fletcher Henderson, American musician died

• 1953 ~ Richard Clayderman, Pianist

• 1953 ~ Joe Diffie, Country Singer

• 1957 ~ At The Hop, by Danny and The Juniors, hit #1 on the music charts. It stayed at the top spot for seven weeks. The title of the tune was originally Do the Bop, but was changed at the suggestion of ‘America’s Oldest Living Teenager’ Dick Clark. Trivia: Danny and The Juniors filled in for a group that failed to appear on Clark’s American Bandstand show in Philadelphia. He called The Juniors to come into the studio immediately. They did and lip-synced At The Hop (written by Junior, Dave White and a friend, John Medora). It took off like a rocket to number one. (A few years later, Danny and The Juniors handed stardom to Chubby Checker when they failed to appear on Clark’s show.)

• 1963 ~ Paul Hindemith passed away
More information about Hindemith

• 1964 ~ Principal filming of the movie classic, Dr. Zhivago, began on location near Madrid, Spain. When completed, the film was 197 minutes long and so spectacular that it received ten Oscar nominations, winning five of the Academy Awards, including Best Original Score. Lara’s Theme was first heard in this movie.

• 1971 ~ Max Steiner, Austrian composer (Gone With the Wind), died at the age of 83

• 1990 ~ David Archuleta, American singer

• 1981 ~ WEA Records (Warner-Elektra-Atlantic) raised the price of its 45 rpm records from $1.68 to $1.98 this day. The company was the leader of the pack with other labels soon boosting their prices. Within a few years, the 45 rpm record was boosted right out of existence.

• 2001 ~ Frankie Gaye, whose combat experience during the Vietnam War was credited with influencing his older brother Marvin’s legendary Motown album “What’s Going On,” died of complications following a heart attack. He was 60. Gaye was a radio operator stationed in Vietnam in the 1960s when he wrote letters to his brother expressing his dissatisfaction with the war. His experiences influenced several songs on his brother’s 1971 album, including Save The Children, Inner City Blues and Mercy Mercy Me, according to Ralph Tee in the book “Soul Music Who’s Who.” Gaye, like his brother, had begun singing in church as a youngster. He went on to work with several Motown artists, including Mary Wells and Kim Weston and provided background vocals on many of his brother’s albums, including “What’s Going On” and 1977’s “Marvin Gaye, Live at the London Palladium.” On his own, Gaye composed the soundtrack to the 1972 film “Penitentiary 1” and toured extensively, both in the United States and England. He also released the singles Extraordinary Girl in 1989 and My Brother in 1990.

• 2016 ~ Debbie Reynolds, 84, died one day after the death of her daughter Carrie Fisher. She was an American actress, singer, businesswoman, film historian, and humanitarian.

More about Reynolds.

• 2017 ~ Rose Marie [Mazzetta], American actress, comedienne and singer, died at the age of 94

• 2018 ~ Christine McGuire, the eldest of the singing McGuire Sisters, who struck gold on the pop charts in the 1950s with “Sincerely,” “Sugartime” and other close-harmony hits that won young American hearts not quite ready for rock ′n’ roll, died at the age of 92.

 

 

December 19 ~ in Music History

Christmas Music: Johnny Marks

• 1888 ~ Fritz Reiner, Hungarian-born American conductor who was the musical director of the Pittsburgh Symphony, New York Metropolitan Opera and Chicago Symphony. He died in 1963

• 1915 ~ Edith Piaf (Edith Giovanna Gassion), French chanteuse and songwriter

• 1925 ~ ‘Little’ Jimmy Dickens, Country Music Hall of Famer

• 1928 ~ Galt MacDermot, Composer

• 1935 ~ Bobby Timmons, American jazz pianist

• 1940 ~ Phil Ochs, American folk singer, songwriter and guitarist

• 1941 ~ Maurice White, Singer, drummer, founder of the group Earth, Wind & Fire

• 1944 ~ Alvin Lee, Musician with Ten Years After

• 1944 ~ Zal Yanovsky, Guitarist, singer with The Lovin’ Spoonful

• 1952 ~ Jeff Davis, Bass with Amazing Rhythm Aces

• 1952 ~ Janie Fricke, Singer, Country Music Association Female Vocalist of the Year in 1982 and 1983

• 1957 ~ Meredith Willson’s The Music Man opened at the Majestic Theatre in New York City. The Broadway show starred Robert Preston and had a run of 1,375 shows. It also had 76 trombones and 101 cornets in the band…

• 1960 ~ Neil Sedaka’s Calendar Girl was released on RCA Victor Records. The song became Sedaka’s fourth record to make the charts. Other hits from the guy who made money off of a love song for Carole King (Oh, Carol) include The Diary, Stairway to Heaven, Bad Girl, Next Door to an Angel, Happy Birthday Sweet Sixteen, Laughter in the Rain and Breaking Up is Hard to Do.

• 1960 ~ Frank Sinatra recorded his first session with his very own record company. Frank did Ring-A-Ding-Ding and Let’s Fall in Love for Reprise Records.

• 2000 ~ Milt Hinton, a jazz bassist and photographer called “The Judge” by the jazz greats he worked with and photographed during a 70-year career, died at the age of 90. During his career, Hinton performed with almost every luminary of jazz and popular music, from Louis Armstrong, Cab Calloway, Dizzy Gillespie and John Coltrane to Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, Barbra Streisand and Paul McCartney. Hinton also documented his world with a camera, compiling close to 60,000 negatives depicting hundreds of jazz artists and popular musicians on the road, in the studio, backstage and at parties.

• 2001 ~ Bill Bissell, a former University of Washington marching band director who helped create “The Wave”, died in his sleep. He was 70. Bissell directed the Huskies’ band with flair, innovation and humor from 1970 until he retired in 1994. He and former Washington yell leader Robb Weller introduced “The Wave,” in which fans stand with arms raised and cheer section by section, to college football 20 years ago. Bissell directed halftime shows at 14 bowl games, including six Rose Bowls and an Orange Bowl, and was awarded a Citation of Excellence from the National Band Association in 1981.

• 2004 ~ Renata Tebaldi, Italian soprano, died at the age of 82

• 2015 ~ Kurt Masur, German conductor (New York Philharmonic), died at the age of 88

December 7 ~ in Music History

today

 

Pearl Harbor Day

 

Christmas Countdown: Hark the Herald Angels Sing

• 1637 ~ Bernardo Pasquini, Italian composer of operas, oratorios, cantatas and keyboard music.

• 1840 ~ Hermann Goetz, German Composer

• 1842 ~ The Philharmonic Society of New York, the first permanent orchestra in the U.S., held its first concert. Despite uncomfortable seating, the event was a huge success. They performed works of Beethoven.

OCMS 1863 ~ Pietro Mascagni, Italian composer and conductor
More information about Mascagni

• 1879 ~ Rudolf Friml, Musician, composer

• 1887 ~ Ernst Toch, Austrian-born American composer

• 1899 ~ Antoni de Kontski, Polish pianist and composer, died at the age of 82

• 1911 ~ Louis Prima, Trumpeter, bandleader with Louis Prima and His New Orleans Gang, Gleeby Rhythm Orchestra; songwriter, singer, married to Keely Smith

• 1931 ~ Bobby Osborne, Musician, mandolin, singer with the duo – Osborne Brothers

• 1942 ~ Harry Chapin, American folk-rock singer and songwriter, Recipient of Special Congressional Gold Medal, Worldwide Humanitarian for the Hungry, Needy and Homeless

• 1948 ~ NBC presented Horace Heidt’s Youth Opportunity Program for the first time. The talent show earned Dick Contino, an accordionist, the $5,000 prize as the program’s first national winner.

• 1949 ~ Tom Waits, Singer, songwriter, playwright, married to Kathleen Brennan

• 1954 ~ Mike Nolan, Singer with Bucks Fizz

• 1957 ~ Pat Boone was at the top of the pop charts for the first of six weeks with April Love. His other number one hits included Ain’t That a Shame, I Almost Lost My Mind, Don’t Forbid Me and Love Letters in the Sand.

• 1984 ~ Michael Jackson was in Chicago to testify that the song, The Girl is Mine, was exclusively his and he didn’t swipe the song, Please Love Me Now. It was a copyright infringement case worth five million dollars. He won.

• 1990 ~ Dee (Delectus) Clark passed away

• 2016 ~ Greg Lake, English rock vocalist and bassist (King Crimson, Emerson, Lake & Palmer), died of cancer at the age of 69

November 15 ~ in Music History

today

• 1766 ~ Rodolphe Kreutzer, French violinist, teacher and composer. In 1810 a broken arm ended his virtuoso career. Beethoven dedicated sonata op 47 to him.

• 1905 ~ Mantovani, Orchestra leader, (1953 UK No.1 single ‘Moulin Rouge’, 1957 US No. 12 single ‘Around The World In Eighty Days’) was born. He died on 30th March 1980.

• 1914 ~ Jorge Bolet, Cuban-born American pianist was born

• 1926 ~ NBC broadcast its first music program. It featured the New York Symphony Orchestra and many distinguished soloists. 24 stations carried the first broadcast. The program was a gala 4½-hour broadcast from the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City. Two remote pickups were also on the program. Opera star Mary Garden sang from Chicago and Will Rogers presented a humorous monologue from Independence, Kansas. Charles Lindbergh was among the luminaries who attended the broadcast.

• 1928 ~ C.W. McCall (William Fries), Singer, songwriter was born

• 1932 ~ Petula Clark, British pop singer (Downtown, My Love) was born

• 1933 ~ Clyde (Lensley) McPhatter, Singer with the Dominoes was born

• 1937 ~ Little Willie John (William Edward John), Singer, convicted of manslaughter

• 1942 ~ Daniel Barenboim, Argentine-born Israeli pianist and conductor of English Chamber Orchestra was born.  “He’s not a pianist who conducts, or a conductor who plays the piano: he’s a total musician.” – Lang Lang

• 1945 ~ Anni-Frid Lyngstad, Singer with Abba was born

• 1946 ~ Janet Lennon, Singer with The Lennon Sisters was born

• 1954 ~ Tony Thompson, Drummer with Chic; played with Led Zeppelin, Live Aid, drummer with Patti LaBelle was born

• 1954 ~ Studio One on CBS-TV featured Joan Weber singing Let Me Go, Lover. The song had enjoyed limited popularity before the TV show, but skyrocketed to fame immediately after.

• 1956 ~ Love Me Tender, the first Elvis Presley film, premiered.

.1963 ~ Fritz Reiner died at the age of 74. He was a prominent conductor of opera and symphonic music in the twentieth century. Hungarian born and trained, he emigrated to the United States in 1922, where he rose to prominence as a conductor with several orchestras. He reached the pinnacle of his career while music director of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in the 1950s and early 1960s.

• 1967 ~ Mari Fernandez, Singer with Sweet Sensation was born

• 1969 ~ The first album featuring Karen and Richard Carpenter was released by A&M Records. The offering would not be a big seller, but a single from the disc, a remake of The Beatles’ Ticket to Ride, would gain national attention. Their next album, however, would establish them as major international stars (Close to You).

• 1969 ~ Janis Joplin was arrested during a gig in Tampa, Florida, after badmouthing a policeman and using vulgar and indecent language. Joplin became upset after police moved into the hall forcing fans to move back to their seats. As the singer left the stage she confronted a detective calling him ‘a son of a bitch’ and told him she would kick his face in. She was released on $504 bail.

• 1974 ~ The most expensive 2-record album was released on Casablanca Records. It was a comedy disc titled, Here’s Johnny – Magic Moments from the Tonight Show.

• 1974 ~ The group, Faces, released their tune with the longest title. You Can Make Me Dance, Sing or Anything (Even Take the Dog for a Walk, Mend a Fuse, Fold Away the Ironing Board, Or Any Other Domestic Shortcomings).

• 1980 ~ After years of success on the music charts with the New Christy Minstrels and the First Edition, Kenny Rogers got his first #1 song. Lady, written by Lionel Richie, stayed at the top for six weeks.

• 1986 ~ The first major operetta written by Gian Carlo Menotti in over 20 years was presented at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC. Starring tenor Placido Domingo, Goya was said by critics to be only “intermittently good.”

• 2003 ~ David Holt, a former child actor once touted by Paramount Pictures as its answer to Shirley Temple, has died. He was 76. Holt, who later became a successful jazz musician and songwriter, died of congestive heart failure. Although his career never rivaled Temple’s, Holt had his share of success as a child actor, playing Elizabeth Taylor’s older brother in “Courage of Lassie” in 1946 and appearing as bratty Sidney Sawyer in “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” in 1938. He also played the crippled boy for whom New York Yankee great Lou Gehrig hit a home run in “Pride of the Yankees” and appeared in “The Big Broadcast of 1936.” Paramount signed Holt to a long-term contract after his 1934 role as a boy whose mother dies in “You Belong To me.” Holt eventually segued into music. He co-wrote the song The Christmas Blues with Sammy Cahn and wrote the music for numerous jazz albums. He hosted the TV show “American Music Shop” in the 1990s.

• 2018 ~ Roy Clark, American singer and musician beloved by generations of fans for his work on the TV show Hee Haw died at the age of 85.

November 11 ~ in Music History

veterans-day

OCMS Veteran’s Day OCMS

.1918 ~ This is Armistice Day or Remembrance Day or Veterans Day or Victory Day or World War I Memorial Day. The name of this special day may be different in different places throughout many nations; but its significance is the same. It was on this day, at 11 a.m., that World War I ceased. The Allied and Central Powers signed an armistice agreement at 5 a.m. in Marshal Foch’s railway car in the Forest of Compiegne, France. Even today, many still bow their heads in remembrance at the 11th hour of this the 11th day of the 11th month.

 

The Armistice of 11 November 1918 was the armistice that ended fighting on land, sea and air in World War I between the Allies and their opponent, Germany. Previous armistices had eliminated Bulgaria, the Ottoman Empire and the Austro-Hungarian Empire from the war.

Also known as the Armistice of Compiègne from the place where it was signed, it came into force at 11 a.m. Paris time on 11 November 1918  (“the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month”) and marked a victory for the Allies and a complete defeat for Germany, although not formally a surrender.

 

 

.1883 ~ Ernst Ansermet, Swiss conductor

.1927 ~ Mose Allison, American jazz pianist, trumpeter and singer

.1929 ~ Dick Clark, TV producer, host of American Bandstand, former Philadelphia DJ

.1929 ~ Andy Kirk and his orchestra recorded “Froggy Bottom” in Kansas City.

.1931 ~ Leslie Parnas, American cellist

.1932 ~ The National Broadcasting Company opened its new studios at Radio City in New York City. They celebrated with a gala program at Radio City Music Hall.

.1938 ~ Kate Smith sang God Bless America for the very first time. It would later become her signature song. Irving Berlin penned the tune in 1917 but never released it until Miss Smith sang it for the first time on her radio broadcast. Actually, the song was then 20 years old, but it had never been publicly performed before.

.1944 ~ Frank Sinatra began a long and successful career with Columbia Records.

.1964 ~ Edward Steuermann, composer, died at the age of 72. Howard Lebow, one of Mrs. O’Connor’s teachers studied under Steuermann

.1974 ~ Leonardo DiCaprio, American actor

.1979 ~ Dimitri Tiomkin passed away.  He was a Russian-American film score composer and conductor.

.1992 ~ Erskine Hawkins passed away.  He was an American trumpet player and big band leader.

.2000 ~ Isadore Granoff, a Ukrainian immigrant who started teaching violin lessons as a teenager and built a famed music school in Philadelphia, died in his sleep at the age of 99. Granoff taught Dizzy Gillespie, John Coltrane and others during more than a half-century at the Granoff School of Music. Granoff taught amateurs and professionals. Some of his students went on to become prominent players of classical music, jazz, swing, big band and Latin sounds. Granoff sold the school in 1970 and later stepped down from the board of directors, renouncing the new owner’s promotional tactics.

.2015 ~ Dr. Maurice Hinson died. He was one of America’s most respected authorities on piano literature. Many of the books in the OCMS library were edited by Dr. Hinson.  Mrs. O’Connor took a piano pedagogy class with him several years ago and learned so much from him.

Among his outstanding achievements, he received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Music Teachers National Association at it Washington, D.C. convention in the spring of 1994, the Outstanding Alumni Award from the University of Florida in 1990, and the Outstanding Alumni Award from the University of Michigan in the fall of 1995. Dr. Hinson has performed, lectured and given master classes worldwide. His books and editions have become classic standards in the studios of serious piano teachers and students the world over. He was awarded the Franz Liszt Medal by the Hungarian Government in 1986. Hailed as a specialist in American piano music, some of his most recent articles appear in the New Grove Dictionary of American Music in the United States.

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 23 ~ in Music History

today

• 1878 ~ The opera Carmen, by Bizet, had its first American performance but it was sung in Italian. It took another fifteen years before audiences could hear it in French, the language in which it was written.

• 1891 ~ Albert Lortzing, German composer

• 1906 ~ Miriam Gideon, American composer

OCMS 1923 ~ Ned Rorem, American composer and writer
Read quotes by and about Ned Rorem
More information about Rorem

• 1927 ~ Sonny (William) Criss, Saxophonist

• 1939 ~ Charlie Foxx, Singer with sister, Inez

• 1940 ~ (Eleanor) Ellie Greenwich (Ellie Gay, Ellie Gee), Songwriter

• 1941 ~ Clarinet a la King was recorded by Benny Goodman and his orchestra on Okeh Records.

• 1947 ~ Greg Ridley, Bass with Spooky Tooth

• 1950 ~ Al Jolson passed away

• 1956 ~ Dwight Yoakam, Songwriter, singer

• 1959 ~ ‘Weird’ Al Yankovic, Singer, comedian, parodies

• 1970 ~ ‘Lady Soul’, Aretha Franklin, won a gold record for Don’t Play that Song.

• 1975 ~ Elton John’s Los Angeles concert was sold out at Dodger Stadium. It was the finale to his concert tour of the western U.S.

• 1978 ~ Mother Maybelle Carter (Addington) passed away

• 1978 ~ CBS Records hiked prices of many vinyl albums by one dollar to $8.98. Other labels soon joined in.

• 1982 ~ Jacques Klein, Brazilian pianist and composer, died at the age of 52

• 2001 ~ Russell “Rusty” Kershaw, a guitarist and recording artist, died of a heart attack at the age of 63. Over the course of a long career, Kershaw, the younger brother of Cajun recording star Doug Kershaw, performed with Neil Young, Chet Atkins, J.J. Cale and Charlie Daniels. Kershaw’s musical career began with a small family band, Pee Wee Kershaw and the Continental Playboys. The band joined the Louisiana Hayride in Shreveport in 1955 and moved on the following year to the Wheeling Jamboree on a West Virginia radio station. Doug and Rusty Kershaw went on to perform as a duo and joined the Grand Ole Opry in 1957. In 1964, Rusty Kershaw started performing on his own, and worked on numerous albums with other artists. Kershaw had lived in New Orleans since 1980 when then-Gov. Edwin Edwards asked him to join the Louisiana Music Commission.

• 2003 ~ Nico Snel, conductor of the Port Angeles Symphony for 18 years, died after a battle with cancer. He was 69. Port Angeles, with a population of about 19,000, is one of the smallest cities in the nation to support a full orchestra. A search committee will spend the next two seasons looking for a new permanent conductor to succeed him. Born in Alkmaar, Holland, Snel began studying music with his father, an accomplished musician and conductor. He started with piano and then moved on to violin, and began performing when he was about 8. The family immigrated to the United States after World War II, when Snel was 15. An accomplished violinist, he went to Germany as a young man and served with the Seventh Army Symphony, becoming the organization’s conductor in 1958. In the 1960s and early ’70s, he worked as a conductor for the Oakland, Calif., Light Opera and the Diablo Light Opera and as director of the Oakland Temple Pageant chorus and orchestra. He moved to the Northwest in the late 1970s and conducted the Everett Youth Symphony for three years. He was named conductor of the Seattle Philharmonic in 1980, a position he held until 1995. He became conductor of the Port Angeles Symphony in 1985, for a time serving both orchestras.

• 2004 ~ Robert Merrill [Moishe Miller], American operatic baritone and actor (NY Metropolitan Opera), died at the age of 87