On This Day

Musicians Born on January 20

  • 1586 Johann Hermann Schein, German composer (Fontana d'Israel), born in Grünhain, Saxony (d. 1630)
  • 1681 Francesco Bartolomeo Conti, Italian composer and mandolin player, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1732)
  • 1703 Joseph-Hector Fiocco, Flemish composer, born in Brussels (d. 1741)
  • 1743 Pascal Boyer, French composer, born in Tarascon, Provence, France (d. 1794)
  • 1761 Giovanni Domenico Perotti, Italian composer, born in Vercelli (d. 1855)
  • 1762 Jerome-Joseph de Momigny, Belgian French composer, born in Philippeville, Belgium (d. 1842)
  • 1783 Justus Johann Friedrich Dotzauer, German cellist and composer (d. 1860)
  • 1809 Sebastian de Iradier, Spanish-Basque composer (La Paloma), born in Lanciego, Álav, Spain (d. 1865)
  • 1844 Johan Peter Selmer, Norwegian composer, born in Christiania, Norway (d. 1910)
  • 1855 Ernest Chausson, French Romantic composer (Poème; Solitude dance le bois), born in Paris, France (d. 1899)
  • 1867 Yvette Guilbert [Emma Laure Esther Guilbert], French singer and actress, born in Paris, France (d. 1944)
  • 1870 Guillaume Lekeu, Belgian composer (Épithalame), born in Heusy, Belguim (d. 1894)
  • 1876 Józef Hofmann, Polish-American pianist, composer, educator (Curtis Institute, 1924-38), and inventor, born in Podgórze, Austro-Hungarian Galicia (now Poland) (d. 1957)
  • 1877 Ruth St. Denis, ballerina (Dances of the 5 Senses), born in Newark, New Jersey (d. 1968)

Person of interestLead Belly

1888 Lead Belly [Huddie William Ledbetter], American blues 12 string guitarist (Rock Island Line), born in Mooringsport, Louisiana (d. 1949)

Blues Musician Lead Belly
Blues Musician
Lead Belly
  • 1891 Mischa Elman, Russian-American concert violinist, born in Talnoye, Kiev Governorate, Russian Empire (now Talne, Ukraine (d. 1967)

  • 1894 Walter Hamor Piston, Jr., American two-time Pulitzer Prize winning composer (Incredible Flutist), music theorist, and educator (Harvard, 1926-60), born in Rockland, Maine (d. 1876)
  • 1895 Eva Jessye, American singer, actress, songwriter (Hallelujah) and 1st black woman to receive international distinction as a choral conductor, born in Coffeyville, Kansas (d. 1992)
  • 1896 Elmer Diktonius, Finnish poet, composer, and musicologist (Janne Kubrik; Stenkol), born in Helsinki (d. 1961)
  • 1896 George Burns [Nathan Birnbaum], American actor, comedian and singer (Oh God; Burns and Allen), born in NYC, New York (d. 1996)
  • 1900 Boris Semyonovich Shekhter, Russian composer, born in Moscow, Russia (d. 1961)
  • 1908 Wilfred Conwell Bain, American music educator, born in Shawville, Canada (d. 1997)
  • 1910 Ennio Porrino, Italian composer, born in Cagliari, Italy (d. 1959)
  • 1910 Nina Verchinina, Russian-Brazilian dancer & choreographer, born in Russia (d. 1995)
  • 1918 [Juan Garcia] Esquivel!, Mexican musician ("The King of Space Age Pop"), born in Tampico, Mexico (d. 2002)
  • 1919 Royalton Kisch, British conductor, born in Marylebone, London (d. 1995)
  • 1919 Stepan Lucky, Slovak film score composer, born in Žilina, Slovakia (d. 2006)
  • 1921 Connie Haines [Yvonne Jasme], American big-band vocalist (Harry James; Tommy Dorsey), born in Savannah, Georgia, (d. 2008)
  • 1922 Ray Anthony [Antonini], American orchestra leader (Ray Anthony Show; "Peter Gunn Theme"), born in Bentleyville, Pennsylvania
  • 1923 Nora Brockstedt, Norwegian pop and jazz singer, born in Oslo, Norway (d. 2015)
  • 1923 (Ottis) "Slim" Whitman, American country singer (Rose Marie), born in Tampa, Florida (d. 2013)
  • 1924 Yvonne Loriod, French pianist, composer (Mélopées africaines), and teacher, born in Houilles, France (d. 2010)
  • 1926 David Tudor, American composer, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (d. 1996)
  • 1928 Robert Satanowski, Polish opera conductor and general, born in Łódź, Poland (d. 1997)
  • 1929 [Wilbur James] Jimmy Cobb, American jazz drummer (Miles Davis' First Great Sextet), born in Washington D.C. (d. 2020)
  • 1931 Hachidai Nakamura, Japanese jazz pianist and songwriter, born in Tsingtao, Republic of China to (d. 1992)

  • 1931 Earl Grant, American musician and singer (Ebb Tide, Winter Wonderland), born in Idabel, Oklahoma (d. 1970)
  • 1933 Ron Townson, American rock vocalist (The 5th Dimension - "Up, Up And Away"), born in St Louis, Missouri (d. 2001)
  • 1936 Luther Tucker, American blues guitarist, born in Memphis, Tennessee (d. 1983)
  • 1940 Jorge Peixinho, Portuguese pianist, composer, and conductor, born in Montijo, Portugal (d. 1995)
  • 1941 Pierre Lalonde, Canadian singer and television host, born in Montreal, Quebec (d. 2016)
  • 1942 William Powell, American R&B singer (O'Jays - "Love Train"), born in Canton, Ohio (d. 1977)
  • 1943 Farhad [Mehrad], Iranian pop, rock and folk singer-songwriter ("Jomeh"), born in Tehran, Iran (d. 2002)
  • 1945 Eric Stewart, English rock singer-songwriter, musician, and record producer (10cc - "I'm Not in Love"), born in Droylsden, United Kingdom
  • 1947 George Grantham, American drummer and vocalist (Poco - "Crazy Eyes"), born in Cordell, Oklahoma
  • 1948 Mel Pritchard, British progressive rock drummer (Barclay James Harvest), born in Oldham, Lancashire (d. 2004)
  • 1951 Ivan Fischer, Hungarian conductor and composer, born in Budapest, Hungary
  • 1952 Ian Hill, English rock bassist (Judas Priest - "Breakin the Law"), born in West Bromwich, United Kingdom
  • 1952 Paul Stanley [Stanley Eisen], American rock guitarist, songwriter, and singer (KISS - "Rock and Roll All Nite"), born in Manhattan, New York
  • 1955 Hiromi Ōta, Japanese pop singer (Momen no handkerchief), born in Kasukabe, Saitama Prefecture, Japan
  • 1956 Adrian Vernon Fish, British classical composer, born in Bristol, England
  • 1963 Mark Ryden, American Pop Surrealist painter, album cover art creator (Micheal Jackson; Aerosmith; 4 Non-Blondes), born in Medford, Oregon
  • 1965 Greg K. [Kreisel], American rock bassist (The Offspring, 1984-2018), born in Glendale, California
  • 1965 John Michael Montgomery, American country music singer, born in Danville, Kentucky
  • 1966 Tracii Guns [Tracy Ulrich], American rock guitarist and songwriter (L.A. Guns - "It's Over Now"), born in Los Angeles, California
  • 1967 Joe Pasquale, American pop-rock singer and songwriter (Prey)

  • 1968 Fantastic Negrito [Xavier Dphrepaulezz], American blues singer-songwriter (The Last Days of Oakland; Please Don't Be Dead), born in Great Barrington, Massachusetts
  • 1969 Nicky Wire [Jones], Welsh rock bassist and lyricist (Manic Street Preachers), born in Llanbadoc, Monmouthshire, Wales
  • 1970 Mitch Benn, English comedian and musician, born in Liverpool, United Kingdom
  • 1971 Gary Barlow, English pop singer (Take That), born in Frodsham, United Kingdom
  • 1971 Questlove [Ahmir Thompson], American DJ, producer and music journalist (The Roots), born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • 1977 Melody [Nathalie Lefebvre], Belgian pop singer, born in Ronse, Belgium
  • 1977 Sid Wilson, American musician (Slipknot), born in Des Moines, Iowa
  • 1979 Rob Bourdon, American musician (Linkin Park), born in Calabasas, California
  • 1979 Asaka Kubo, Japanese singer (A+Jyuc), born in Japan
  • 1979 Will Young, British singer-songwriter & actor, born in Wokingham, United Kingdom
  • 1980 Matthew Tuck, Welsh guitarist (Bullet for My Valentine), born in Bridgend, United Kingdom
  • 1983 Mari Yaguchi, Japanese singer (Morning Musume), born in Yokohama, Japan
  • 1984 Toni Gonzaga, Filipino singer and actress, born in Rizal, Philippines
  • 1986 Kevin Parker, Australian singer, songwriter, musician, and record producer (Tame Impala - The Slow Rush), born in Sydney