On This Day

Year 1920 in Music History

Events in Music


Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 3 Arthur Honegger's "Chant de Nigamon," premieres

Composer Arthur Honegger
Composer
Arthur Honegger

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Feb 21 Darius Milhaud & Jean Cocteau's ballet, premieres in Paris

Composer Darius Milhaud
Composer
Darius Milhaud

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Feb 28 Maurice Ravel's orchestral suite "Le tombeau de Couperin" premieres in Paris

Composer and Pianist Maurice Ravel
Composer and Pianist
Maurice Ravel
  • Aug 10 Mamie Smith and her Jazz Hounds record “Crazy Blues” for Okeh Records, first significant Blues hit by African American artist
  • Nov 3 "Emperor Jones" opens at Provincetown Theater
  • Dec 12 Maurice Ravel's ballet "La Valse" premieres in Paris

Music releaseMusic Premiere

Dec 21 Jerome Kern/BG DeSylva's musical "Sally" premieres in NYC

Broadway Composer Jerome Kern
Broadway Composer
Jerome Kern

Birthdays in Music

  • Jan 1 Virgilio Savona, Italian singer (Quartetto Cetra)
  • Jan 3 Renato Carosone, Italian canzone napoletana singer, pianist, songwriter ("Tu vuò fà l'americano" - "You Want to Be American"), and accordionist, born in Naples, Kingdom of Italy (d. 2001)
  • Jan 5 Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli, Italian pianist, born in Brescia, Italy (d. 1995)
  • Jan 6 Earl Kim, Korean-American composer, born in Dinuba, California (d. 1998)
  • Jan 17 Nora Kaye, American prima ballerina, born in NYC, New York (d. 1987)
  • Jan 17 George Handy [Hendleman], American bebop jazz arranger, pianist and composer (Handyland, U.S.A.), born in New York City (d. 1997)
  • Jan 18 Constance Moore, American singer and actress (Buck Rogers; Show Business; Atlantic City), born in Sioux City, Iowa (d. 2005)
  • Jan 19 Luciano Chailly, Italian opera composer (L'Idiota) and artistic director (La Scala), born in Ferrara, Italy (d. 2002)
  • Jan 21 Torsten Nilsson, Swedish organist, choral director, and composer (Out of the Night of the Earth), born in Höör, Sweden (d. 1999)
  • Jan 22 William Warfield, American concert bass-baritone singer and actor (Show Boat), born in West Helena, Arkansas (d. 2002)
  • Jan 24 Don Saddler, American choreographer & dancer (Holiday Hotel), born in Van Nuys, California (d. 2014)
  • Jan 24 Jimmy Forrest, American jazz saxophonist (Night Train), born In St. Louis, Missouri (d. 1980)
  • Jan 27 Helmut Zacharias, German violinist (d. 2002)
  • Jan 30 George Skibine, Russian-American ballet dancer & choreographer (Tragedy in Verona), born in Yasnaya Polyana, Russia (d. 1981)
  • Feb 7 Oscar Brand, Canadian-born American folk vocalist (Draw Me A Laugh), born in Winnipeg, Manitoba (d. 2016)
  • Feb 12 Robert "Bob" Shad [Abraham Shadrinsky], American record producer and record label owner (Big Brother and the Holding Company), born in NYC, New York (d. 1985)
  • Feb 13 Boudleaux Bryant, American country music and pop songwriter ("Love Hurts"; "Bye Bye Love"; "Wake Up Little Susie"), born in Shellman, Georgia (d. 1987)
  • Feb 13 Eileen Farrell, American soprano (I Got A Right To Sing The Blues; Metropolitan Opera, 1960-66) and film voice (Interrupted Melody), born in Willimantic, Connecticut (d. 2002)
  • Feb 15 Ingmar Milveden, Swedish organist, composer, and musicologist, born in Gothenburg, Sweden (d. 2007)
  • Feb 16 Lee Russell, American vocalist (Vincent Lopez), born in Cleveland, Ohio
  • Feb 17 Paul Fetler, American composer (December Stillness; Three Poems By Walt Whitman), born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (d. 2018)
  • Feb 22 Bettina Vernon-Warren, dancer
  • Feb 22 Del Wood [Adelaide Hazelwood], American country musician, born in Nashville, Tennessee (d. 1989)
  • Feb 23 Hall Overton, American jazz pianist, and jazz and classical composer (Enchanted Pear Tree), born in Bangor, Michigan [1]
  • Feb 27 Jose Melis, orchestra leader (Jack Paar Program), born in Havana, Cuba
  • Feb 27 Robert L. "Bob" Talley, American jazz and blues pianist and composer (Blues Alley All Star Band), born in Little Rock, Arkansas (d. 1995)
  • Feb 28 Edward Kassner, Austrian born music publisher (President Records), born in Vienna, Austria (d. 1996)
  • Feb 29 James Mitchell, American dancer and actor (All My Children, Bloomer Girl), born in Sacramento, California (d. 2010)
  • Feb 29 Ivan Petrov, Russian operatic bass (d. 2003)
  • Feb 29 Rudy Cafaro, American jazz guitarist, born in Middle Village, New York (d. 2000)
  • Mar 1 Alfred Grant Goodman, composer
  • Mar 2 Enrique Franco, composer
  • Mar 6 Peter Brinson, British ballet and dance writer, lecturer, and promoter (Ballet For All), born in Llandudno, Wales (d. 1995)
  • Mar 8 James Daniel "Danny" Turner, saxophonist
  • Mar 10 Kenneth "Jethro" Burns, American country singer, and mandolin player (Homer & Jethro -"The Battle of Kookamonga"), born in Conasauga, Tennessee (d. 1989)
  • Mar 10 Boris Vian, French writer and musician (d. 1959)
  • Mar 16 John Addison, British Academy and BAFTA Award-winning film score composer (Tom Jones; A Bridge Too Far; Centennial), born in Surrey, England (d. 1998)
  • Mar 17 John La Montaine, composer (Pulitzer 1959), born in Oak Park, Illinois (d. 2013)
  • Mar 21 Manolis Chiotis, Greek bouzouki virtuoso and songwriter (d. 1970)
  • Mar 22 Fanny Waterman, English concert pianist and teacher (founder of Leeds International Piano Competition), born in Leeds, England (d. 2020)
  • Mar 23 Alexander Grigori Harut'unyan, composer
  • Mar 23 Geoffrey Bush, British organist, pianist, composer, and educator, born in London (d. 1998)
  • Mar 27 Richard Hayman, American harmonica player ("Ruby"), arranger, and orchestra leader (Boston Pops; St. Louis Pops; Grand Rapids Pops), born in Cambridge, Massachusetts (d. 2014)
  • Mar 27 Carl-Henrik Norin Swedish jazz saxophonist, and composer ("Mississippi Mood"), born in Västerås, Sweden (d. 1967)
  • Apr 3 Stan Freeman, American composer (Melody Tour), born in Waterbury, Connecticut (d. 2001)

Person of interestRavi Shankar

Apr 7 Ravi Shankar [Chowdhury], Bengali Brahmin sitar master and Indian classical music composer (West Meets East; Concert for Bangladesh), born in Benares, British, India (d. 2012)

Musician Ravi Shankar
Musician
Ravi Shankar
  • Apr 8 Carmen McRae, American jazz singer and pianist ("Dream of Life"), born in New York City (d. 1994)
  • Apr 9 Art Van Damme, American jazz accordionist (Chicago Jazz), born in Norway, Michigan (d. 2010)
  • Apr 13 John LaPorta, American jazz clarinetist and composer, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (d. 2004)
  • Apr 13 Ken Nordine, American voice-over and recording artist (World Jazz), born in Cherokee, Iowa (d. 2019)
  • Apr 14 Eduardo Maturana, Chilean composer, born in Valparaíso, Chile (d. 2003)
  • Apr 17 Genevieve [Ginette Auger], French actress and singer (The Jack Paar Show), born in Paris, France (d. 2004)
  • Apr 21 Bruno Maderna, Italian conductor, and avant garde composer (Quadrivium; Satyricon), born in Venice, Italy
  • Apr 23 Louis Barron, American composer (electronic music), born in Minneapolis, Minnesota (d. 1989)
  • Apr 26 Padú del Caribe [Juan Chabaya Lampe], Aruban pianist and composer, known as the "Father of the Caribbean" ("Aruba Dushi Tera" - Aruba's national anthem), born in Oranjestad, Aruba, Kingdom of the Netherlandsborn
  • Apr 27 Guido Cantelli, Italian conductor, born in Novara, Italy (d. 1956)
  • Apr 28 Nan Merriman, American-Dutch singer (Arturo Toscanini NBC Orchestra), born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (d. 2012)
  • Apr 29 Harold Shapero, American composer (9 Minute Opera), born in Lynn, Massachusetts (d. 2013)
  • Apr 30 Leen 't Hart, Dutch organist and composer, born in Delft, Netherlands (d. 1992)
  • May 2 Jacob Gilboa [Erwin Goldberg], Israeli composer, born in Košice, Czechoslovakia (d. 2007)
  • May 2 Jean-Marie Auberson, Swiss conductor, born in Chavornay, Switzerland (d. 2004)
  • May 3 John Lewis, American jazz pianist, arranger, and composer (Modern Jazz Quartet, 1952-97), born in La Grange, Illinois (d. 2001)
  • May 10 Bert Weedon, English guitar player ("Play in a Day" books), born in London (d. 2012)
  • May 11 Beryl Bryden, British jazz/blues singer and washboard player, born in Norwich, Norfolk (d. 1998)
  • May 13 Gareth Morris, British flautist (d. 2007)
  • May 18 Lucia Mannucci, Italian jazz singer (Quartetto Cetra, 1947-88), born in Bologna, Italy (d. 2012)
  • May 20 Elizabeth "Betty" Driver, British singer and actress (Coronation Street, Pardon the Expression), born in Leicester, England (d. 2011)
  • May 21 Anthony Steel, British actor and singer (Malta Story, The Wooden Horse), born in London, England (d. 2001)
  • May 23 Helen O'Connell, American big-band singer (Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra - "Green Eyes"; "Anapola"), and TV host (Today Show, 1956-58), born in Lima, Ohio (d. 1993)
  • May 26 Peggy Lee [Norma Delores Egstrom], American singer ("Fever"; "Is That All There Is?"), songwriter ("Mañana"), and actress (Pete Kelly's Blues; Lady and the Tramp), born in Jamestown, North Dakota (d. 2002)
  • May 27 Gwyneth George, Welsh cellist and teacher, born on the Mumbles, Wales (d. 2016)
  • May 30 George London, bass-baritone (Monterone-Rigoleto), born in Montreal, Quebec (d. 1985)
  • May 30 John Heawood, Canadian actor, singer and choreographer (Chitty Chitty Bang Bang), born in Canada (d. 1995)
  • Jun 4 Britt Woodman, American jazz trombonist (Duke Ellington; Charles Mingus; Lionel Hampton), born in Los Angeles, California (d. 2000)
  • Jun 5 Kurt Edelhagen, German jazz pianist and big band leader, born in Herne, Germany (d. 1982)
  • Jun 10 Zbyněk Vostřák, Czech composer (While We Are Falling Asleep), born in Prague, Czechoslovakia (d. 1985) [1]
  • Jun 11 Hazel Scott, Trinidadian singer and pianist, born in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago (d. 1981)
  • Jun 11 Shelly Manne, American 'West Coast' jazz and session drummer, percussionist, composer, and bandleader, born in New York City (d. 1984)
  • Jun 14 Helmer-Rayner Sinisalo, Karelian composer, born in Zlatoust, Ural (d. 1989)
  • Jun 23 Paul Des Marais, American composer, born in Menominee, Michigan (d. 2011)
  • Jun 24 Bernhard Krol, German hornist and composer (Figaro Metamorphoses), born in Berlin, Gemany (d. 2013) [1]
  • Jun 26 June Preisser, American acrobatic dancer and actress (Babes in Arms, Strike Up the Band), born in New Orleans, Louisiana (d. 1984)
  • Jul 3 John Lessard, American composer, born in San Francisco, California (d. 2003)
  • Jul 5 Issachar Miron, Israeli composer, born in Kutno, Poland (d. 2015)
  • Jul 12 Paul Foster, American singer (Soul Stirrers), born in Grand Cane, Louisiana (d. 1995)
  • Jul 14 Marijohn Wilkin, American songwriter (One Day at a Time), born in Kemp, Texas (d. 2006)
  • Jul 19 Robert Mann, American composer and violinist (String Quartet 1952), born in Portland, Oregon (d. 2018)
  • Jul 21 Isaac Stern, American-Ukrainian violinist (debut San Francisco Symphony), born in Kremenets, Ukraine, Soviet Union (d. 2001)
  • Jul 21 Manuel Valls, Spanish composer, born in Barcelona, Spain (d. 1984)
  • Jul 23 Amália Rodrigues, Portuguese fado singer, born in Lisbon, Portugal (d. 1999)
  • Jul 31 Rudolf Halaczinsky, German composer, born in Emma-Grube, Upper Silesia (d. 1999)
  • Aug 3 Maria Karnilova, American dancer and actress (Fiddler on the Roof, Ivan the Terrible), born in Hartford, Connecticut (d. 2001)
  • Aug 3 Charlie Shavers, American jazz trumpet player, born in NYC, New York (d. 1971)
  • Aug 8 Leo Chiosso, Italian lyricist (d. 2006)
  • Aug 8 James "Jimmy" Witherspoon, American jump blues singer (Ain't Nobody's Business), born in Gurdon, Arkansas (d. 1997)
  • Aug 13 Charlie Alfred Galbraith, English jazz trombonist, born in London (d. 1997)
  • Aug 17 Maureen O'Hara [FitzSimons], Irish actress and singer (Miracle on 34th St, The Quiet Man), Ranelagh, County Dublin (d. 2015)
  • Aug 19 Paul Kont, Austrian composer, born in Vienna (d. 2000)
  • Aug 23 Aart Verstegen, Dutch ballet dancer and choreographer (Jolly Joker's Last Joke), born in Rotterdam, Netherlands (d. 1998)
  • Aug 25 Leonard Gaskin, American jazz bassist (Dizzy Gillespie, Miles Davis), born in New York City (d. 2009)

Weddings in Music


LoveWedding of Interest

Apr 7 Country singer Jimmie Rodgers (22) weds Carrie Williamson

Country Singer Jimmie Rodgers
Country Singer
Jimmie Rodgers

Deaths in Music

  • Jan 16 Reginald De Koven, American composer, dies at 60
  • Feb 12 Émile Sauret, French violinist and composer, dies at 67
  • Feb 23 Alexander Alexandrovich Il'yinsky, composer, dies at 61
  • Apr 3 Homer Newton Bartlett, composer, dies at 74
  • Apr 8 Charles Tomlinson Griffes, American composer (White Peacock), dies of influenza at 35
  • Apr 16 John Conrad Nordqvist, Swedish composer, dies at 80
  • Jun 15 Michel-Gaston Carraud, French composer, dies at 55
  • Jun 27 Adolphe-Basile Routhier, French-Canadian lyricist (O Canada), dies at 81
  • Jul 26 Carlos Troyer, American composer, dies at 83
  • Aug 4 Vladimir Rebikov, Russian pianist and composer, dies at 54
  • Sep 25 William F. Sudds, American composer, music publisher, and teacher,, dies at 77
  • Oct 2 Max Bruch, German composer (Kol Nidre), dies at 82
  • Oct 16 Alberto Nepomuceno, Brazilian composer and conductor (Artemis), dies at 56
  • Oct 29 Johann Ernst Perabo, composer, dies at 74
  • Nov 21 Caryl Florio [William James Robjohn], English-American composer, dies at 77
  • Dec 6 Karel Kovařovic, Czech composer, dies at 57
  • Dec 12 Paul Lacôme, French composer, dies at 82