On This Day

Musicians Born in 1917

  • Jan 2 Vera Zorina, German dancer (d. 2003)
  • Jan 5 Reginald Smith Brindle, British composer, born in Cuerden, Lancashire (d. 2003)
  • Jan 5 Wieland Wagner, German opera director, born in Bayreuth, Germany (d. 1966)
  • Jan 7 Ulysses Simpson Kay, American composer (Of New Horizons: Overture), born in Tucson, Arizona (d. 1995)
  • Jan 10 Jerry Wexler, American music producer who coined the term "rhythm and blues" (Aretha Franklin, Led Zeppelin, Bob Dylan), born in The Bronx, New York (d. 2008)
  • Jan 12 Walter Hendl, American conductor & composer, born in West New York, New Jersey (d. 2007)
  • Jan 13 Felix Guerro Diaz, composer
  • Jan 17 Oskar Morawetz, Czech-Canadian composer (From the Diary of Anne Frank), born in Světlá nad Sázavou, Bohemia (now Czech Republic); (d. 2007)
  • Jan 19 Rudolf Maros, Hungarian composer (Sirato/Lament; Euphonies), and pedagogue, born in Stachy, Bohemia (d. 1982)
  • Jan 22 Albert "Pud" Brown, American jazz clarinetist and saxophonist, born in Wilmington, Delaware (d. 1996)
  • Jan 25 Floyd "Guitar" Smith, American jazz and blues guitarist and record producer, born in St. Louis, Missouri (d. 1982)
  • Jan 29 John Raitt, American stage and screen singer and actor (Carousel; Pajama Game), born in Santa Ana, California (d. 2005)
  • Jan 31 José Maceda, Filipino composer, born in Manila, Philippines (d. 2004)
  • Feb 1 Edward Simons, American classical violinist and conductor (Rockland Symphony, 1962-2017), born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (d. 2018)
  • Feb 6 Arthur Gold, Canadian pianist, born in Toronto, Ontario (d. 1990)
  • Feb 6 Liberato Firmino Sifonia, Italian composer, born in Geneva, Switzerland (d. 1995)
  • Feb 7 Milton "Milt" Holland, American drummer, percussionist, ethnomusicologist (film Tinkerbell's tinkle, Bewitched's nose tinkle), born in Chicago, Illinois (d. 2005)
  • Feb 12 Thomas Scherman, American conductor (Little Orchestra Society, 1947-75), born in NYC, New York (d. 1979)
  • Feb 20 Phil Moore, American jazz pianist, arranger, and bandleader, born in Portland Oregon (d. 1987) [1]
  • Feb 21 Lucille Bremer, American actress and dancer (Meet Me In St. Louis; Ziegfeld Follies), born in Amsterdam, New York (d. 1996)
  • Feb 21 Tadd Dameron, American jazz pianist, composer ("If You Could See Me Now"; "Lady Bird"), arranger (Count Basie, Jimmie Lunceford, Dizzy Gillespie, Billy Eckstine) and band leader, born in Cleveland, Ohio (d. 1965)
  • Feb 28 George Malcolm, British keyboard player and conductor (Westminster Cathedral Master of the Music, 1947-59), born in London (d. 1997)

Dinah Shore

Mar 1 (Fannye) "Dinah" Shore, American singer ("Buttons and Bows"), and TV personality (Dinah Shore Show), born in Winchester, Tennessee (d. 1994)

Desi Arnaz

Mar 2 Desi Arnaz, Cuban-American actor and singer (Ricky Ricardo-I Love Lucy), born in Santiago de Cuba (d. 1986)

  • Mar 2 John Gardner, English classical composer, born in Manchester, England (d. 2011)
  • Mar 7 Janet Collins, American ballerina, choreographer, and teacher born in New Orleans, Louisiana (d. 2003)
  • Mar 7 Robert Erickson, American composer, born in Marquette, Michigan (d. 1997)
  • Mar 12 Leonard Chess [Lejzor Czyż], Polish-American blues and R&B record company executive (Chess Records), born in Motal, Poland (now Belarus) (d. 1969)
  • Mar 17 Brian Boydell, composer
  • Mar 19 Constantin "Dinu" Lipatti, Romanian classical pianist and composer, born in Bucharest, Kingdom of Romania (d. 1950)
  • Mar 20 Vera Lynn, British popular music singer, known as 'the Forces' Sweetheart' ("We'll Meet Again"; "The White Cliffs of Dover"), born in East Ham, London (d. 2020)
  • Mar 23 Johnny Guarnieri, American stride and jazz stride pianist, and harpsichordist (The Gramercy Five; The Morey Amsterdam Show), born in New York City (d. 1985) (d. 1985)
  • Mar 26 Rufus Thomas [Mr. Swing], American musician (Do the Funky Chicken), born in Cayce, Mississippi (d. 2001)
  • Mar 30 Els Aarne, Estonian composer, born in Makiivka, Russian Empire (d. 1995)
  • Mar 30 Rudolf Bruci, composer
  • Apr 1 Johnny Andrews, American singer/host (Songs at Twilight), born in Boston, Massachusetts
  • Apr 2 Lou Monte, American singer (Peppino the Italian Mouse), born in Manhattan, New York (d. 1989)
  • Apr 3 Bill Finegan, American composer (Sauter-Finegan Band, Sat Night Revue), born in Newark, New Jersey (d. 2008)
  • Apr 3 Tibor Andrasovan, Slovak composer, born in Slovenská Lupca, Zólyom, Austria-Hungary (d. 2001)
  • Apr 5 Richard Yardumian, American composer (Come Creator Spirit), born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (d. 1985)
  • Apr 6 "Big" Walter Horton, American blues harmonica player ("Everybody's Fishin'"), born in Horn Lake, Mississippi (d. 1981)
  • Apr 12 Helen Forrest [Fogel], American big band pop and swing singer (Artie Shaw; Benny Goodman; Harry James), born in Atlantic City, New Jersey (d. 1999)
  • Apr 15 Pietro Grossi, Italian composer, and electronic music pioneer, born in Venice, Italy (d. 2002)
  • Apr 19 Johnny Hoes, Dutch musician and producer (Wished I'd stayed with my Mom), born in Rotterdam, Netherlands (d. 2011)
  • Apr 22 Yvette Chauviré, French ballerina, born in Paris (d. 2016)

Ella Fitzgerald

Apr 25 Ella Fitzgerald, American jazz, swing, pop, and blues singer, known as "The First Lady of Song" (Verve "Songbook" series), born in Newport News, Virginia (d. 1996)

  • Apr 30 Bea Wain, American singer and radio host ("Deep Purple"; "Heart and Soul"), born in The Bronx, New York (d. 2017)
  • May 3 James Penberthy, Australian composer, born in Melbourne, Australia (d. 1999)
  • May 3 George Gaynes, Dutch-Finnish-American singer, stage and screen actor (Tootsie; Police Academy; General Hospital), born in Helsinki, Grand Duchy of Finland, Russian Empire (d. 2016)
  • May 3 Betty Comden [Basya Cohen], American lyricist ("On The Town"; "Just In Time"), born in Brooklyn, New York (d. 2006)
  • May 4 Edward Toner Cone, American pianist, composer and pedagogue, born in Greensboro, North Carolina (d. 2004)
  • May 6 Kal Mann, American lyricist ("Let's Twist Again"), born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (d. 2001)
  • May 12 Andries Antonie Rieu, Dutch conductor (Maastricht Symphony Orchestra, 1949-80), born in Haarlem, Netherlands (d. 1992)
  • May 14 Lou Harrison, American composer (La Koro Sutro), born in Portland, Oregon (d. 2003)
  • May 16 Geraint Jones, Welsh conductor and organist, born in Porth, Wales (d. 1998)
  • May 20 Enyss Djemil, composer
  • May 22 Georg Tintner, Austrian conductor, born in Vienna, Austria (d. 1999)
  • May 22 Daniel Nagrin, American modern dancer and choreographer, born in NYC, New York (d. 2008)
  • May 25 Jimmy Hamilton, American jazz saxophonist, born in Dillon, South Carolina (d. 1994)
  • May 28 "Papa" John Creach, American blues violinist (Hot Tuna; Jefferson Airplane), born in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania (d. 1994)
  • Jun 2 Max Showalter, American actor and composer (Kansas, Niagara, Stockard Channing Show in Caldwell), born in Caldwell, Kansas (d. 2000)
  • Jun 4 Robert Merrill [Moishe Miller], American operatic baritone (NY Metropolitan Opera, 1945-76), and actor, born in Brooklyn, New York (d. 2004)

Dean Martin

Jun 7 Dean Martin [Dino Paul Crocetti], American singer ("That's Amore"; "Everybody Loves Somebody"; "Sway"), comedian and actor (Martin and Lewis, The Dean Martin Show), born in Steubenville, Ohio (d. 1995)

  • Jun 13 Simon "Si" Zentner, American jazz, session, and pop trombonist and big-band leader, born in New York City (d. 2000)
  • Jun 13 Philip Bodner, American jazz clarinetist and studio musician (also played flute, oboe, saxophone, piccolo, and English horn), born in Waterbury, Connecticut (d. 2008)
  • Jun 15 Michalis Genitsaris, Greek rebetiko singer and composer, born in Agia Sofia, Piraeus, Greece (d. 2005)
  • Jun 18 Akhmet Jevdet Ismail Hajiyev, Azerbaijani composer, born in Nukha, Azerbaijan (d. 2002)
  • Jun 23 Peter Knight, English musical arranger, conductor, and composer, born in Exmouth, Devon, England (d. 1985)
  • Jun 28 Willem "Wim" Sonneveld, Dutch singer considered one of the 'Great Three' of Dutch cabaret (My Fair Lady), born in Utrecht, Netherlands (d. 1974)
  • Jun 30 Lena Horne, American actress and singer (Stormy Weather, Wiz), born in Brooklyn, New York (d. 2010)
  • Jul 6 Hugo Cole, composer and music critic, born in London (d. 1995)
  • Jul 7 Elton Britt {Baker], American country singer-songwriter ("There's a Star-Spangled Banner Waving Somewhere"; Saturday Night Jamboree), born in Zack, Arkansas (d. 1972)
  • Jul 7 (Woodrow Wilson) "Red" Sovine, American country music singer ("Phantom 309"; "Teddy Bear"), born in Charleston, West Virginia (d. 1980)
  • Jul 9 Ted Steele, American orchestra leader (Cavalcade of Stars), born in Hartford, Connecticut (d. 1985)
  • Jul 14 Arthur Leavins, English violinist, leader of the BBC Concert Orchestra (d. 1995)
  • Jul 18 Henri Salvador, French-Caribbean pop singer, guitarist, and cabaret artist, born in Cayenne, French Guiana (d. 2008)
  • Jul 24 Robert Farnon, Canadian classical and light music composer and conductor, born in Toronto, Ontario (d. 2005)
  • Jul 27 Moses Rascoe, American blues singer, born in Windsor, North Carolina (d. 1994)
  • Jul 27 Bourvil [André Robert Raimbourg], French actor and singer (Le Corniaud; La Grande Vadrouille), born in Prétot-Vicquemare, France (d. 1970)
  • Aug 12 Marjorie Reynolds [Goodspeed], American actress and dancer (Holiday Inn, Life of Riley), born in Buhl, Idaho (d. 1997)
  • Aug 16 Roque Cordero, Panamanian composer (Sonata Breve), born in Panama City (d. 2008)
  • Aug 22 John Lee Hooker, American blues guitarist ("Boogie Chillen"' "Boom Boom"), born in Clarksdale, Mississippi (d. 2001)
  • Aug 23 Tex Williams, American country-western singer, born in Ramsey, Illinois (d. 1985)
  • Sep 2 Laurindo Almeida, Brazilian classical, jazz and Latin guitarist and composer (developed bossa nova), born in Prainha, São Paulo, Brazil (d. 1995)
  • Sep 13 Jón Thórarinsson, Icelandic composer and musicologist, born in Gilsárteigur, Iceland (d. 2012)
  • Sep 13 Robert Ward, American composer (Pantaloon), born in Cleveland, Ohio (d. 2013)
  • Sep 15 Richard Arnell, English classical composer, born in London, England (d. 2009)
  • Sep 17 Isang Yun, Korean-born German composer, born in Sancheong, Korea (d. 1995)
  • Sep 18 Ande Anderson, English opera director, born in South Shields (d. 1996)
  • Sep 26 Nelson "Cadillac" Williams, American jazz trumpeter (Tiny Bradshaw; Billy Eckstine; Duke Ellington), born in Montgomery, Alabama (d. 1973)
  • Sep 28 Michael Somes, British dancer (Royal Ballet, 1938-70), born in Horsley, Gloucestershire, England (d. 1994)
  • Sep 28 Vaclav Kaslik, Czechoslovakia, opera composer/conductor

Buddy Rich

Sep 30 (Bernard) "Buddy" Rich, American jazz drummer and band leader (Buddy Rich Band - "Away We Go"), born in Brooklyn, New York (d. 1987)

  • Oct 2 Francis Jackson, British organist and composer, born in Malton, Yorkshire, England
  • Oct 2 William Marshall, American singer, bandleader and actor (State Fair, Pennsylvanians), born in Chicago, Illinois (d. 1994)
  • Oct 4 Albert de Klerk, Dutch organist, composer, and conductor, born in Haarlem, Netherlands (d. 1998)
  • Oct 8 Hans Poser, German composer, born in Tannenbergsthal (d. 1970)
  • Oct 10 Thelonious Monk, American jazz pianist and composer ("Straight, No Chaser"; "'Round Midnight"), born in Rocky Mount, North Carolina (d. 1982)
  • Oct 11 Franz Alphons Wolpert, German composer, born in Wiesentheid, Germany (d. 1978)
  • Oct 15 Paul Tanner, American trombonist (Glenn Miller Orchestra), developer and player of the Electro-Theremin (The Beach Boys - "Good Vibrations"; "I Just Wasn't Made for These Times"), and educator (UCLA), born in Skunk Hollow, Kentucky (d. 2013)
  • Oct 21 John Birks "Dizzy" Gillespie, American jazz trumpeter, a creator of bebop & modern jazz (A Night In Tunisia), born in Cheraw, South Carolina (d. 1993)
  • Oct 27 Carl "Bama" Warwick, American jazz trumpeter (Dizzy Gillespie; John Kirby; Woody Herman; Buddy Rich) born in Birmingham, Alabama (d. 2003)
  • Oct 31 Erik Routley, English Congregational minister, composer and musicologist, born in England (d. 1982)
  • Nov 5 Claus Adam, American composer and cellist (Juilliard Quartet), born in Sumatra, Indonesia (d. 1983)
  • Nov 7 András Mihály, Hungarian composer, born in Budapest (d. 1993)
  • Nov 7 Howard Rumsey, American jazz musician (Lighthouse Cafe), born in Brawley, California (d. 2015)
  • Nov 11 Julien-François Zbinden, Swiss jazz pianist, and jazz and classical composer (Monophrases), born in Rolle, Switzerland (d. 2021)
  • Nov 12 Jo Stafford, American pop singer (The Pied Pipers - "I'll Never Smile Again"; solo - "You Belong to Me"), born in Coalinga, California (d. 2008)
  • Nov 20 Max Georg Baumann, German composer (Libertas Cruciata), born in Kronbacher, Germany (d. 1999)
  • Nov 20 Pam Henning [Cornelia Catharina Pamela Ingenegeren], Indonesian-Dutch cabaret dancer and actress, born in Batavia, Dutch East Indies (d. 2008)
  • Nov 20 Ram Gopal, Indian-English dancer (Blue Peter, Purple Plain), born in Bangalore, India (d. 2003)
  • Nov 22 Jean-Etienne Marie, composer
  • Nov 24 Richard Bilderback Hervig, composer
  • Nov 24 Rita Corita [Hendrika Sturm], Dutch pop singer ("Koffie, koffie, lekker bakkie koffie - Coffee, coffee, nice cup of coffee"), born in Amsterdam, Netherlands (d. 1998)
  • Nov 26 Nesuhi Ertegün, Turkish–American jazz record producer & executive (Atlantic Records; Warner Music), born in Istanbul, ottoman Empire (now Turkey) (d. 1989)
  • Nov 29 Merle Travis, American country singer, guitarist and songwriter ("16 Tons"), born in Rosewood, Kentucky (d. 1983)
  • Dec 2 Sylvia Syms, American jazz singer (Hello Dolly, Dream Girl, Them There Eyes), born in Brooklyn, New York (d. 1992)
  • Dec 8 Rufo I Wever, Aruban pianist and composer (Ca'i Organ), born in Oranjestad, Aruba (d. 1977)
  • Dec 11 [Dámaso] Pérez Prado, Cuban bandleader and musician, born in Matanzas, Cuba (d. 1989)
  • Dec 13 Dave Street [Patrick Devlin], American actor and singer (Moonrise, I Surrender Dear, Broadway Open House), born in Los Angeles, California (d. 1971)
  • Dec 17 Louis Salvador Palange, composer
  • Dec 18 Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson, American blues, jazz, and R&B alto saxophonist, born in Houston, Texas (d. 1988)
  • Dec 21 Andre Eglevsky, Russian-born ballet dancer & teacher (Limelight), born in Moscow, Russia (d. 1977)
  • Dec 31 Joan McCracken, American actress, dancer and comedian (Claudie Story of a Marriage), born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (d. 1961)

About 1917

Chinese Zodiac: Dragon (Jan 1 - Jan 22), Snake (Jan 23 - Dec 31)