Year 1939 in Music History

Events in Music

  • Mar 25 Billboard Magazine introduces hillbilly (country) music chart
  • Aug 15 "The Wizard of Oz", American musical fantasy film adaptation of L. Frank Baum's book, premieres at Grauman's Chinese Theatre, Hollywood; directed by Victor Fleming and King Vidor with cast featuring Judy Garland (Dorothy), Ray Bolger (Scarecrow), Jack Haley (Tin Man), Bert Lahr (Cowardly Lion), Frank Morgan (Wizard), Billie Burke (Glinda), and Margaret Hamilton (Wicked Witch); songs by Harold Arlen and Yip Harburg
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Musicians Married in 1939

  • Feb 4 American singer Frank Sinatra (23) marries 1st wife Nancy Barbato (21) at Our Lady of Sorrows catholic church in Jersey City, New Jersey; divorce in 1951

Musicians Who Died in 1939

  • Jan 9 Johann Strauss, Austrian conductor and Royal Ball director, dies at 72
  • Jan 10 Julius Bittner, Austrian composer (Missa Austriaca), dies at 64
  • Feb 11 Franz Schmidt, Austro-Hungarian cellist, pianist, and composer, dies at 64
  • Feb 17 Willy Hess, German violinist, dies at 79
  • Feb 18 Ludwig Bonvin, composer, dies at 89

More Deaths in Music