Today in Band Leader History

Historical Events

  • 1944-12-15 Bandleader, Major Glenn Miller, lost over English Channel
  • 1995-01-30 Kevin Eubanks officially becomes band leader of "Tonight Show"

Famous Birthdays

  • 1727-03-30 Tommaso MFS Traetta, Ital's opera composer/band leader (Farnace)
  • 1890-06-06 Ted Lewis, American bandleader (d. 1971)
  • 1893-12-02 Louis Freeman, band leader
  • 1897-05-14 Sidney Bechet, US, jazz clarinetist/saxophonist/band leader
  • 1898-03-26 Charles Shadwell, English conductor and bandleader (d. 1979)
  • 1898-06-01 Edgar "Cookie" Fairchild, bandleader (Jerry Colonna Show), born in NYC, New York

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1899-04-29 Duke Ellington, American bandleader, composer and pianist (Take the A Train), born in Washington, District of Columbia (d. 1974)

Jazz-orchestra leader, Composer, Pianist Duke Ellington
Jazz-orchestra leader, Composer, Pianist
Duke Ellington
  • 1900-01-01 Xavier Cugat, Barcelona Spain, bandleader (married Abbe Lane, Charo)
  • 1901-02-16 Wayne King, Savannah Ill, saxophonist/bandleader (Waltz King)
  • 1902-02-12 William D Revelli, Spring Gulch Colorado, band leader
  • 1902-03-30 Ted Heath, British musician and band leader (d. 1969)
  • 1902-06-06 Jimmie Lunceford, American bandleader (d. 1947)
  • 1903-04-10 Nick Stuart, Romania, bandleader
  • 1903-12-17 Ray Noble, English bandleader and actor (d. 1978)
  • 1903-12-29 Clyde McCoy, jazz trumpeter/bandleader
  • 1904-03-01 Glenn Miller, bandleader (Glenn Miller Orchestra-In the Mood)
  • 1905-01-13 Percy Humphrey, American jazz trumpet player and bandleader, born in New Orleans, Louisiana (d. 1995)
  • 1905-08-20 Jack [Weldon J] Teagarden, US trombonist/actor (Meet Band Leaders)
  • 1905-12-14 Sydney Lipton, bandleader/violin
  • 1907-06-11 Jose Bernabe Marino Barreto y Casanova, pianist vocalist bandleader
  • 1907-10-19 Roger Wolfe Kahn, American bandleader (d. 1962)
  • 1907-12-25 Cab[ell] Calloway, bandleader (Minnie the Moocha, Jazzball), born in Rochester, New York
  • 1908-09-06 Paul Lavalle, Beacon NY, bandleader (Cities Service Band of America)
  • 1909-04-01 Eddie Duchin, Mass, society pianist/bandleader (Eddie Duchin Orch)
  • 1909-05-30 Benny Goodman, clarinetist/bandleader (King of Swing), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • 1909-08-17 Larry Clinton, American trumpeter and bandleader (d. 1985)
  • 1910-01-09 Dick Henry Jurgen, bandleader
  • 1910-01-21 Eua Sunthornsanan, Thai composer and bandleader (d. 1981)
  • 1910-05-23 Artie Shaw, [Arthur Arshawsky], bandleader (Come'on my House), born in NYC, New York
  • 1910-10-10 Milton "Tippy" Larkin, band leader
  • 1910-12-17 Sy Oliver, American jazz arranger and bandleader (d. 1988)
  • 1911-01-22 Bruno Kreisky, Austria, bandleader/chancellor (1970-83)
  • 1912-02-16 Machito "Frank Grillo", Florida, bandleader (created salsa music)
  • 1912-03-14 Les Brown, Reinerton Pa, American bandleader (d. 2001)
  • 1912-12-25 Leighton Noble, singer/bandleader
  • 1913-05-16 Woody Herman, jazz clarinetist/bandleader/composer (Thundering Herds)
  • 1913-07-22 Gorni Kramer, Italian bandleader (d. 1995)
  • 1914-02-12 Gordon Tex Beneke, saxophonist/bandleader/vocalist (Glenn Miller Orch)
  • 1914-07-26 Erskine Hawkins, American musician and bandleader (d. 1993)
  • 1915-12-25 Pete Rugolo, bandleader/arranger (Fugitive)
  • 1916-12-11 Dámaso Pérez Prado, Cuban-born bandleader (d. 1989)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1917-09-30 Buddy Rich, New York, American jazz drummer and band leader (Buddy Rich Band-Away We Go), (d. 1987)

Jazz Drummer/Band Leader Buddy Rich
Jazz Drummer/Band Leader
Buddy Rich
  • 1917-10-02 William Marshall, band leader (Pennsylvanians), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • 1918-05-23 Robert "Bumps" Blackwell, band leader and record producer, born in Seattle, Washington (d. 1985)
  • 1919-03-11 Mercer Ellington, son of Duke Ellington/bandleader
  • 1919-04-12 Billy Vaughn, singer and bandleader (Sail Along Sil'vry Moon), born in Glasgow, Kentucky (d. 1991)
  • 1920-03-27 Richard Hayman, bandleader/conductor/pianist (Theme of 3 Penny Opera)
  • 1922-03-20 Larry Elgart, bandleader/alto sax (Elgart Orch), born in New Haven, Connecticut
  • 1922-05-07 Lew Anderson, American actor and bandleader (d. 2006)
  • 1923-04-20 Tito Puente, Puerto Rico, bandleader (Dance Mania)
  • 1924-06-26 Syd Lawrence, bandleader (Syd Lawrence Orch)
  • 1925-08-27 Tony Crombie, drummer/bandleader
  • 1925-09-02 Hugo Montenegro, American composer and bandleader (d. 1981)
  • 1926-09-17 Bill Black, band leader and bassist who worked with Elvis, born in Memphis, Tennessee (d. 1965)
  • 1927-07-07 Doc Severinson, [Carl], Arlington Oregon, bandleader/trumpeter on the Tonight Show
  • 1928-04-08 Monty Sunshine, jazz bandleader (Gotta Travel On)
  • 1929-02-25 Tommy Newsom, Va, musician/bandleader/saxophonist (Tonight Show)
  • 1929-04-06 Arthur S Taylor Jr, US drummer/band leader (Taylor's Wailers)
  • 1929-04-17 James Last, German-born composer and big band leader, born in Bremen, Germany (d. 2015)
  • 1931-07-06 Joseph Daniel White, singer/bandleader
  • 1935-02-12 Gene McDaniels, US vocalist/bandleader/actor (Young Swingers)
  • 1935-03-31 Herb Alpert, bandleader/trumpeteer (Tijuana Brass)/CEO (A & M)
  • 1935-05-21 Terry Lightfoot, clarinetist/bandleader (New Orleans Jazzmen)
  • 1935-08-03 Vic Vogel, Canadian pianist, composer and bandleader
  • 1937-07-28 Peter Duchin, pianist/bandleader (Peter Duchin Orch), born in NYC, New York
  • 1939-03-23 Pepe Lienhard, Swiss band leader and entertainer
  • 1944-01-10 Frank Sinatra Jr, American singer/bandleader (Golddigers), born in Jersey City, New Jersey (d. 2016)
  • 1944-07-24 Barbara Thompson, jazz musician/composer/bandleader
  • 1948-05-19 Tom Scott, LA, saxophonist/bandleader (Pat Sajak Show)
  • 1957-11-15 Kevin Eubanks, bandleader (Tonight Show)
  • 1967-12-05 René Shuman, [Shumans], rockabilly-bandleader/singer

Famous Weddings


HeartWedding of Interest

1918-07-02 Jazz orchestra band leader Duke Ellington (19) weds high school sweetheart Edna Thompson

Jazz-orchestra leader, Composer, Pianist Duke Ellington
Jazz-orchestra leader, Composer, Pianist
Duke Ellington

HeartWedding of Interest

1937-06-26 Actress Mary Pickford (45) weds actor and band leader Charles Rogers (32)

Actress Mary Pickford
Actress
Mary Pickford
  • 1943-07-05 Actress Betty Grable (26) weds big band leader Harry James (27)

HeartWedding of Interest

1945-10-17 Actress Ava Gardner (22) weds band leader Artie Shaw (35) in Hollywood

Actress Ava Gardner
Actress
Ava Gardner

Famous Deaths

  • 1936-04-13 Milton Brown, American swing bandleader (b. 1903)
  • 1939-06-16 Chick Webb, American jazz drummer and big band leader (b. 1905)
  • 1944-12-15 Glenn Miller, US band leader/jazz composer, dies at 40
  • 1947-07-12 Jimmie Lunceford, American saxophonist and bandleader (b. 1902)
  • 1956-11-26 Tommy Dorsey, big bandleader, dies at 51
  • 1959-05-14 Sidney Bechet, US jazz clarinetist/saxophonist/bandleader, dies at 62
  • 1962-07-12 Roger Wolfe Kahn, American band leader (b. 1907)
  • 1965-10-21 Bill Black, American band leader and bassist who worked with Elvis, dies of a brain tumour at 39
  • 1966-09-28 Lucky Millinder, bandleader/singer, dies
  • 1969-03-25 Billy Cotton, British bandleader & entertainer (b. 1889)
  • 1969-11-18 Ted Heath, British musician and bandleader (b. 1902)
  • 1971-08-25 Ted Lewis, [Theodore L Friedman], bandleader, dies at 80
  • 1973-04-07 Nick Stuart, bandleader, dies of cancer at 69
  • 1974-08-09 Bill Chase, American trumpet player and bandleader (b. 1934)
  • 1975-02-20 Edgar "Cookie" Fairchild, bandleader (Jerry Colonna Show), dies at 76
  • 1975-08-08 Julian "Cannonball" Alderly, saxophonist/bandleader, dies of a stroke at 46
  • 1978-04-03 Ray Noble, English bandleader and composer (b. 1903)
  • 1978-10-10 Ralph Marterie, American big band leader (b. 1914)
  • 1978-12-17 Don Ellis, American jazz band leader (b. 1934)
  • 1979-07-28 Charles Shadwell, English conductor and bandleader (b. 1898)
  • 1979-08-25 Stan Kenton, jazz band leader (Music 55), dies at 67
  • 1981-04-01 Eua Sunthornsanan, Thai composer and bandleader (b. 1910)
  • 1983-07-05 Harry James, swing-era bandleader/trumpet player, dies at 67
  • 1985-05-02 Larry Clinton, American trumpeter and bandleader (b. 1909)
  • 1985-07-23 Kay Kyser, bandleader (Kay Kyser's Kollege), dies at 79
  • 1985-10-06 Nelson Riddle, American bandleader (b. 1921)
  • 1986-06-13 Benny Goodman, clarinetist/bandleader (King of Swing), dies at 77
  • 1987-10-29 Woody Herman, bandleader/composer (Thundering Herds), dies at 74
  • 1991-09-26 Billy Vaughn, American singer and bandleader (Sail Along Sil'vry Moon), dies of cancer at 72
  • 1992-01-03 Anthony Del Casino, band leader (Charlie Barnet Band), dies at 79
  • 1992-04-05 Anthony "Tony" Papa, big band leader, dies at 65
  • 1993-03-09 Bob Crosby, swing-era bandleader (Bobcats), dies of cancer at 79
  • 1994-03-06 Leighton Noble, singer/Bandleader, dies at 81
  • 1994-03-09 Louis Freeman, band leader, dies at 100
  • 1994-11-18 Cab[ell] Calloway, US band leader/actor (Missourians), dies at 86
  • 1995-03-16 Sydney Simone, band leader, dies at 80
  • 1995-07-19 Sydney Lipton, bandleader/violin, dies at 89
  • 1995-07-22 Percy Humphrey, American jazz trumpet player and bandleader in New Orleans, Louisiana, dies at 90
  • 1995-08-03 Jose B M Barreto y Casanova, pianist vocalist bandleader, dies at 88
  • 1995-10-05 Dick Henry Jurgen, bandleader, dies at 85
  • 1995-12-14 Don Anthony, bandleader/songwriter, dies at 85
  • 1996-01-05 Joseph Daniel White, singer/bandleader, dies at 84
  • 1996-02-08 Mercer Kennedy Ellington, trumpeter bandleader/composer, dies at 76
  • 1996-08-31 Milton "Tippy" Larkin, band leader, dies at 85
  • 1996-09-20 Paul Weston, bandleader, dies at 84
  • 2000-05-30 Tex Beneke, American bandleader and musician (b. 1914)
  • 2001-01-04 Les Brown, American bandleader (b. 1912)
  • 2001-03-07 Frankie Carle, American pianist and bandleader (b. 1903)
  • 2002-01-03 Juan García Esquivel, Mexican band leader (b. 1918)
  • 2002-10-12 Ray Conniff, American bandleader and musician (b. 1916)
  • 2003-02-01 Mongo Santamaria, Cuban percussionist and band leader (b. 1922)
  • 2004-12-30 Artie Shaw, American jazz clarinetist, composer, and bandleader, dies at 94
  • 2005-11-01 Skitch Henderson, English-born bandleader (b. 1918)
  • 2006-05-14 Lew Anderson, American actor and bandleader (b. 1922)
  • 2006-08-23 Maynard Ferguson, Canadian jazz trumpeter and bandleader (b. 1928)
  • 2007-02-02 Joe Hunter, American pianist and bandleader of The Funk Brothers (b. 1927)
  • 2007-02-12 Peggy Gilbert, American jazz saxophonist and bandleader (b. 1905)
  • 2007-04-28 Tommy Newsom, American bandleader (b. 1929)
  • 2011-05-07 Big George, British broadcaster, composer, bandleader and musician (b. 1957)
  • 2015-06-09 James Last, German-born composer and big band leader, dies at 86
  • 2015-07-19 Van Alexander, American composer and band leader (A-Tisket, A-Tasket), dies at 100
  • 2016-03-16 Frank Sinatra Jr, American singer/bandleader, dies at 72