1931 in Music

Events in Music

  • Feb 7 US opera "Peter Ibbetson" by Deems Taylor premieres at Met Opera, New York City
  • Mar 3 "Star Spangled Banner" officially becomes US national anthem by congressional resolution
  • Mar 3 Cab Calloway records "Minnie Moocher" (Jazz's 1st million seller)
  • Mar 25 Hal Kemp & his orchestra record Whistles, with Skinnay Ennis

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Apr 8 Dmitri Shostakovich's ballet "The Arrow" premieres

  • May 1 Singer Kate Smith begins her long-running radio program on CBS
  • Jun 6 "There Ought To Be A Moonlight Saving Time" by Guy Lombardo hits #1

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Sep 2 Bing Crosby makes his solo radio debut

Singer and Actor Bing Crosby
Singer and Actor
Bing Crosby
  • Sep 17 Operetta "Viktoria & Her Hussar" by Paul Abraham (adapted for English by Harry Graham) premieres in London at Palace Theatre h
  • Oct 13 Musical "Everybody's Welcome" with T/J Dorsey premieres in NYC
  • Nov 2 Warren, Dixon and Young's musical "Laugh Parade" premieres in NYC
  • Nov 11 Cornerstones laid for Opera House & Veteran's Building in San Francisco
  • Dec 4 "Frankenstein" opens at Mayfair
  • Dec 25 NY's Metropolitan Opera broadcasts an entire opera over radio
  • Dec 26 Pulitzer Prize-winning musical play "Of Thee I Sing" by George and Ira Gershwin premieres on Broadway, New York City

Birthdays in Music

Birthdays 1 - 100 of 147

  • Jan 1 Carel Brons, Dutch composer, born in Groningen (d. 1983)
  • Jan 5 Alfred Brendel, Wiesenberg Moravia, Austrian pianist
  • Jan 5 Alvin Ailey, choreographer (American Dance Theater)
  • Jan 8 Bill Graham, German American rock promoter (Fillmore), born in Germany (d. 1991)
  • Jan 14 Juraj Pospisil, composer
  • Jan 14 Caterina Valente, Italian singer, dancer, and actress (Bon soir, Kathrin!, The Entertainers), born in Paris, France
  • Jan 15 Murad Kazhlayev, composer
  • Jan 17 Frederick Alfred Fox, composer
  • Jan 20 Hachidai Nakamura, Japanese songwriter and pianist (d. 1992)
  • Jan 20 Earl Grant, Idabel, Oklahoma, American musician and singer (Ebb Tide, Winter Wonderland)
  • Jan 22 Sam Cooke, American singer and entrepreneur described as "the inventor of soul music" (You Send Me), born in Clarksdale Mississippi (d. 1964)
  • Jan 24 Ib Norholm, Danish composer and organist, born in Søborg, Gladsaxe
  • Jan 25 Harold Lloyd Jr, American actor, singer and son of famous silent film actor Harold Lloyd sr (Frankenstein's Daughter), born in Beverly Hills, California (d. 1971)
  • Jan 25 "Stikkan" Stig Anderson, Swedish actor, music entrepreneur and co-founder of Polar Music (ABBA), born in Hova, Sweden (d. 1997)
  • Jan 27 Rudi Maugeri, singer (The Crew Cuts), born in Toronto, Ontario (d. 2004)
  • Jan 29 Leslie Bricuse, English/US composer (Stop the world I want to get off)
  • Feb 6 Mamie Van Doren, American actress, model, singer, and sex symbol (Teacher's Pet, The Navy vs. the Night Monsters), born in Rowena, South Dakota
  • Feb 8 Shadia [Fatmah Ahmed Kamal Shaker], Egyptian actress and singer Midaq Alley, The Thief and the Dogs), born in Sharqia Governorate, Egypt, birth date disputed (d. 2017)
  • Feb 9 Xavier Benguerel, composer
  • Feb 10 Gerhard Rosenfeld, composer
  • Feb 10 Makoto Shinohara, composer
  • Feb 14 Phyllis McGuire, vocalist (McGuire Sisters), born in Middletown, Ohio
  • Feb 16 Ken Takakura [Goichi Oda], Japanese actor and singer (Black Rain, Story of Antarctic), born in Nakama, Fukuoka (d. 2014)
  • Feb 18 Dieter Schonbach, composer
  • Feb 24 Dominic Chianese, American actor, singer, and musician (The Sopranos, The Godfather Part II), born in The Bronx, New York
  • Feb 26 Francisco Kroepfl, composer
  • Mar 5 Anthony Headges, composer
  • Mar 6 Carmen de Lavallade, American actress, dancer and choreographer (Aida), born in Los Angeles, California
  • Mar 7 C W Stubblefield, music promoter
  • Mar 10 Georges Dor, Quebec author, playwright, singer and songwriter (d. 2001)
  • Mar 13 Rosalind Elias, American mezzo-soprano (Grimgerde-Die Walkuere), born in Lowell, Massachusetts
  • Mar 14 Phil Phillips [Baptiste], rock vocalist (Sea Of Love)
  • Mar 16 Betty Johnson, American pop and cabaret singer (Jack Paar Show, I Dreamed), born in Guilford County, North Carolina
  • Mar 20 Antonio Tauriello, composer
  • Mar 20 Hal Linden [Harold Lipshitz], American directer, musician and actor (Barney Miller, Blacke's Magic), born in The Bronx, New York City
  • Mar 25 Paul Motian, American jazz drummer and composer
  • Mar 27 Burt Collins, American jazz trumpeter, born in NYC, New York (d. 2007)
  • Mar 27 Yoriaki Matsudaira, Japanese composer, born in Tokyo
  • Mar 30 Harold Burrage, US singer/pianist (Hi Yo Silver)
  • Mar 30 Sandor Szokolay, composer
  • Apr 2 Imre Olsvik, Hungarian composer and ethnomusicologist, born in Budapest (d. 2014)
  • Apr 6 Joan Carlyle, British soprano
  • Apr 11 Koichi Sugiyama, Japanese composer and conductor, born in Tokyo
  • Apr 12 Martin Boykan, American composer, born in NYC, New York
  • Apr 12 Leonid Derbenyov, Russian poet-songwriter, born in Moscow (d. 1995)
  • Apr 27 Igor Oistrach, Russian violinist, son of David Oistrach, born in Odessa, Ukraine
  • Apr 27 Krzysztof Komeda, Polish composer, born in Poznań, Poland (d. 1969)
  • Apr 29 Lonnie Donegan, Scottish singer-songwriter and the King of Skiffle, born in Glasgow (d. 2002)
  • May 2 Richard "Groove" Holmes, American jazz musician (Misty), born in Camden, New Jersey (d. 1991)
  • May 4 Gennadi Rozhdestvensky, Russian conductor (USSR State Radio), born in Moscow, Russia
  • May 7 Teresa Brewer, American pop and jazz singer (Put Another Nickel In), born in Toledo, Ohio (d. 2007)
  • May 8 Charles M Wilson, composer
  • May 14 Alvin Augustus Lucier Jr, composer
  • May 16 Donald James Martino, composer (Noturnno-Pulitzer 1974), born in Plainfield, New Jersey
  • May 17 Dewey Redman, jazz musician
  • May 18 Robert Morse, American singer and actor (Mad Men, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying), born in Newton, Massachusetts
  • May 19 Ruben Radica, composer
  • May 19 Eric Tappy, Swiss tenor
  • May 27 Kenny Price, Florence Ky, country singer (Midwestern Hayride, Hee Haw)
  • May 27 Veroslav Neumann, composer
  • May 28 Ervin Junger, composer
  • May 28 Peter Talbot Westergaard, composer
  • May 31 Shirley Verrett, mezzo-soprano (Cassandra-Les Troyens), born in New Orleans, Louisiana
  • May 31 Huby Heard, singer-songwriter (The God Squad), born in Hamilton, Ohio (d. 2004)
  • Jun 3 Françoise Arnoul, French actress and composer (French Cancan, Jacko & Lise), born in Constantine, France
  • Jun 4 Cesar Bolanos, composer
  • Jun 7 Henry Weinberg, American composer, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Jun 10 João Gilberto, Brazilian singer and guitarist
  • Jun 11 Audrey Schuh, American operatic soprano, born in New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Jun 16 Ivo Petric, Slovenian composer, born in Ljubljana
  • Jun 20 Arne Nordheim, Larvik Norway, conductor/composer (Aftonland)
  • Jun 26 Lucien Goethals, Belgian composer, born in Ghent, Belgium (d. 2006)
  • Jun 27 Alojz Srebotnjak, Slovenian composer, born in Postojna, Slovenia (d. 2010)
  • Jun 27 Ryszard Kwiatkowski, Polish composer, born in Jaranów, Włocławek, Poland
  • Jun 30 James Loughran, British conductor
  • Jul 6 Joseph Daniel White, singer/bandleader
  • Jul 8 Jerry Vale [Genaro Louis Vitaliano], American singer (Arriverderci Roma), born in NYC (d. 2014)
  • Jul 8 Louis Ballard, composer
  • Jul 11 Tab Hunter [Arthur Andrew Kelm], American actor (Tab Hunter Show, Lust in the Dust) and singer (Young Love), born in NYC, New York (d. 2018)
  • Jul 11 Thurston Harris, American pop vocalist (The Sharps, Little Bitty Pretty One), born in Indianapolis, Indiana (d. 1990)
  • Jul 12 André Laporte, Flemish composer, born in Oplinter, Tienen, Belgium
  • Jul 21 Plas Johnson, American jazz musician (The Pink Panther Theme), born in Donaldsonville, Louisiana
  • Jul 21 Leon Schidlowsky, composer
  • Jul 31 Kenny Burrell, American guitarist (Organ Grinder Swing), born in Detroit, Michigan
  • Aug 1 Ramblin' Jack Elliott, American folk singer, born in Brooklyn, New York
  • Aug 1 Seán Ó Riada [John Reidy], Irish composer (Mise Éire), born in Cork City (d. 1971)
  • Aug 2 Henryk Schiller, Polish composer, born in Poznań, Poland (d. 2006)
  • Aug 2 Philippa Schuyler, African-American child prodigy and composer, born in Harlem, New York (d. 1967)
  • Aug 8 Jonathan Elkus, composer
  • Aug 11 Manabendra Mukhopadhyay, Bengali singer and composer (Ei Ganga ei Padda), born in Kolkata (d. 1992)
  • Aug 15 Mario Kuri-Aldana, composer
  • Aug 21 Gregg Smith, choral conductor and composer, born in Chicago, Illinois (d. 2016)
  • Aug 26 Dane Skerl, Slovenian composer, born in Ljubljana
  • Aug 28 John Perkins, Canadian singer (Crew Cuts), born in Toronto, Ontario
  • Aug 28 John Shirley-Quirk, baritone (Death in Venice), born in Liverpool, England
  • Aug 29 Stelios Kazantzidis, Greek singer, born in Nea Ionia, Athens, Greece (d. 2001)
  • Sep 1 Boxcar Willie [Travis Martin], American soldier (USAF) and singer (King of the Road), born in Ellis County, Texas (d. 1999)
  • Sep 3 Rudolf Kelterborn, Swiss musician and composer, born in Basel, Switzerland
  • Sep 4 Mitzi Gaynor [Francesca von Gerber], American actress, singer and dancer (Anything Goes, South Pacific), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • Sep 7 Charles Camilleri, Maltese composer, born in Ħamrun, Malta (d. 2009)

Weddings in Music


HeartWedding of Interest

Jun 8 Songwriter Johnny Mercer (21) weds chorus girl Ginger Meehan in New York City

Songwriter Johnny Mercer
Songwriter
Johnny Mercer

Deaths in Music

  • Jan 11 Oscar Fetras, composer, dies at 76
  • Jan 21 Felix Blumenfeld, Russian composer, conductor and pianist, dies at 67
  • Jan 23 Anna Pavlova, Russian prima ballerina and choreographer (Diaghilew, Dying Swan), dies from pneumonia at 49
  • Feb 7 Ion Vidu, Romanian composer and conductor, dies at 67
  • Feb 23 Nellie Melba, [Helen Mitchell], Australian soprano, dies
  • Mar 8 Clara Kathleen Rogers, composer, dies at 87
  • Apr 4 George Whitefield Chadwick, composer, dies at 76
  • Apr 6 Giuseppi Radiciotti, composer, dies at 73
  • Apr 9 Paul Antonin Vidal, composer, dies at 67
  • May 3 Frank Hoyt Losey, composer, dies at 59
  • May 3 Otto Winter-Hjelm, Norwegian musician and composer, dies at 93
  • May 12 Eugene Ysaye, Belgian composer and violinist, dies at 72
  • May 13 Josif Marinkovic, composer, dies at 79
  • Jun 9 Henrique Oswald, composer, dies at 79
  • Aug 6 Leon Bismarck "Bix" Beiderbecke, jazz cornetist (In Mist), dies at 29
  • Aug 20 Waldemar von Baussnern, composer, dies at 64
  • Sep 10 Alfonso Rendano, Italian composer, dies at 78
  • Oct 3 Carl August Nielsen, composer, dies at 66
  • Oct 20 Emanuel Moor, composer, dies at 68
  • Oct 29 Luciano Gallet, Brazilian composer, dies at 38
  • Nov 4 Buddy Bolden, African-American jazz musician, dies
  • Nov 17 Georgi Atanasov, Bulgarian composer (Gergana), dies at 50
  • Nov 19 Frederic Cliffe, English composer, dies at 74
  • Nov 23 Evert Cornelis, Dutch conductor and pianist, dies at 46
  • Nov 30 John Hyatt Brewer, American composer, dies at 75
  • Nov 30 Marc-Jean-Baptiste Delmas, French composer, dies at 46
  • Dec 2 Vincent D'indy, French composer and teacher, dies at 80
  • Dec 27 Peter C. Lutkin, composer, dies at 73
  • Dec 27 Walter Courvoisier, composer, dies at 56