On This Day

Year 1944 in Music History

Events in Music


Music concertMusic Concert

Jan 18 The Metropolitan Opera House in New York City hosts a jazz concert for the first time - performers include Louis Armstrong, Billie Holiday, Lionel Hampton, Mildred Bailey, Red Norvo, Roy Eldridge, Jack Teagarden, and Benny Goodman, via remote hook-up. [1]

Jazz Musician Louis Armstrong
Jazz Musician
Louis Armstrong
Clarinetist and Bandleader Benny Goodman
Clarinetist and Bandleader
Benny Goodman
Jazz Musician Billie Holiday
Jazz Musician
Billie Holiday

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 23 Arnold Schoenberg's "Ode to Napoleon" premieres in NYC

Composer and Painter Arnold Schoenberg
Composer and Painter
Arnold Schoenberg

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Feb 7 Bing Crosby records "Swinging on a Star" for Decca Records (Academy Award Best Original Song)

Singer and Actor Bing Crosby
Singer and Actor
Bing Crosby

Music releaseMusic Premiere

Mar 3 1st performance of corporal Samuel Barber's 2nd Symphony

Composer Samuel Barber
Composer
Samuel Barber
  • Mar 5 1st performance of Walter Piston's 2nd Symphony by the National Symphony, in Washington, D.C.

Music releaseMusic Premiere

Apr 2 Dmitri Shostakovich's 8th Symphony premieres in NY

  • May 3 "Going My Way", directed by Leo McCarey and starring Bing Crosby premieres in New York (Academy Award for Best Picture, 1945)
  • May 9 Country singer Jimmie Davis becomes Governor of Louisiana
  • Jun 18 Farewell concert of Willem Mengelberg in Paris
  • Aug 20 "Anna Lucasta" opens on Broadway
  • Aug 21 Grieg, Wright and Forrest's musical "Song of Norway" premieres in NYC
  • Sep 28 1st TV Musical comedy (The Boys from Boise)
  • Oct 5 Harold Arlen and Yip Harburg's musical "Bloomer Girl" premieres in NYC
  • Oct 8 Samuel Barber's "Capricorn Concerto" premieres
  • Oct 21 Walter Piston's "Fugue for a Victory Tune" premieres in NYC

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Oct 30 Aaron Copland's ballet score "Appalachian Spring" premieres in Washington, D.C. with Martha Graham dancing lead role

Composer Aaron Copland
Composer
Aaron Copland

Film release premierFilm Premier

Nov 22 Film musical "Meet Me In St Louis", starring Judy Garland, and directed by Vincente Minnelli, premieres at Loew’s State Theater on Washington Avenue in St. Louis, Missouri

Actress Judy Garland
Actress
Judy Garland

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 1 Béla Bartòk's Concerto for orchestra, premieres

Composer and Pianist Béla Bartok
Composer and Pianist
Béla Bartok
  • Dec 1 Prokofjev's 8th Piano sonata, premieres

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 15 Bandleader, Major Glenn Miller, lost over English Channel

Big Band Leader and Jazz Composer Glenn Miller
Big Band Leader and Jazz Composer
Glenn Miller
  • Dec 28 Leonard Bernstein's musical "On the Town" premieres in NYC

Birthdays in Music

Birthdays 1 - 100 of 284

  • Jan 2 Péter Eötvös, Hungarian composer, conductor and teacher ("Chinese Opera"), born in Székelyudvarhely, Transylvania, Hungary (now Romania)
  • Jan 3 David Atherton, English conductor
  • Jan 4 Volker Hornback, German saxophone player and violinist (Tangerine Dream, 1967-69)
  • Jan 7 Mike McGear, English singer (Paul McCartney's brother), born in Liverpool, England
  • Jan 8 Joel "Taz" DiGregorio, American country-rock keyboardist (Charlie Daniels Band), born in Southbridge, Massachusetts (d. 2011)

Person of interestJimmy Page

Jan 9 Jimmy Page, English rock guitarist (Led Zeppelin - Stairway to Heaven), born in London, England

Rock Star Jimmy Page
Rock Star
Jimmy Page
  • Jan 10 Frank Sinatra, Jr., American singer and bandleader, born in Jersey City, New Jersey (d. 2016)
  • Jan 11 York Georg Holler, composer
  • Jan 12 Viktoria Postnikova, Russian pianist, born in Moscow, Russia
  • Jan 12 Jack Schroer, British saxophonist & pianist (The Caledonia Soul Orchestra), (d. 1995)
  • Jan 16 Jim Stafford, American singer (Spiders & Snakes, My Girl Bill), born in Eloise, Florida
  • Jan 17 Françoise Hardy, French pop singer, born in Paris, France
  • Jan 18 Larry "Legs" Smith, British rocker (Bonzo Dog Band - "Urban Spaceman"), born in Oxford, United Kingdom
  • Jan 18 Al Perkins, American steel guitarist (Triple Play), born in De Kalb, Texas
  • Jan 19 Pehr Henrik Nordgren, Finnish composer (The Whole World Will Lament; Kwaidan-balladit), born in Saltvik, Åland Islands, Finland (d. 2008)
  • Jan 19 Laurie London, English singer
  • Jan 21 (Frank) Neely Bruce, American composer (Circular 14: The Apotheosis of Aristides), born in Memphis, Tennessee
  • Jan 23 Jerry Lawson, American musician (Persuasions-Under the Boardwalk), born in Fort Lauderdale, Florida
  • Jan 24 Klaus Nomi, German singer, born in Immenstadt, Germany (d. 1983)
  • Jan 27 Kevin Coyne, English musician, born in Derby (d. 2004)
  • Jan 27 Nick Mason, British progressive rock drummer (Pink Floyd), born in Birmingham, England
  • Jan 28 Arnold Mühren, Dutch pop bassist/singer (The Cats - "One Way Wind"), born in Volendam, Holland
  • Jan 28 John Tavener, British composer (The Whale), born in London, England (d. 2013)
  • Jan 28 Marty Fried, American rock drummer (The Cyrkle - "Red Rubber Ball"), born in Wayside, New Jersey
  • Jan 30 Lynn Harrell, American cellist, born in New York City, New York (d. 2020)
  • Jan 31 Charlie Musselwhite, American blues harmonica player (Stand Back!; Get Up!), born in Kosciusko, Mississippi
  • Feb 1 Tommy Duffy, American musician (Echoes), born in Brooklyn, New York
  • Feb 2 Andrew Davis, British conductor ( Toronto Symphony, 1975-88; BBC Symphony, 1989-2000; Lyric Opera of Chicago, 2000-21), born in Ashbridge, England,
  • Feb 2 Ursula Oppens, American pianist and co-founder (Speculum Musicae-NYC), born in NYC, New York
  • Feb 3 Trisha Noble, Australian singer and actress
  • Feb 4 Florence LaRue, American pop and R&B vocalist (5th Dimension - "Up, Up, And Away"), born in Plainfield, New Jersey,
  • Feb 5 Al Kooper [Alan Peter Kuperschmidt], American rock musician, record producer and songwriter (Blood Sweat & Tears, Super Session), born in Brooklyn, New York
  • Feb 5 J. R. Cobb, American guitarist & songwriter (Atlanta Rhythm Section, Classic IV), born in Birmingham, Alabama
  • Feb 6 Georgeanna Tillman, American singer (the Marvelettes), born in Inkster, Michigan (d. 1980)
  • Feb 10 Peter Allen, Australian pop singer-songwriter, painist and performer ("I Go to Rio"; Legs Diamond), born in Tenterfield, New South Wales, Australia (d. 1992)
  • Feb 10 Rufus Reid, American jazz double bassist composer, and educator, born in Atlanta, Georgia
  • Feb 12 Marian "Moe" Bandy, American country vocalist (Just Good Ol' Boys), born in Meridian, Mississippi
  • Feb 13 Rebop Kwaku Baah, Ghanaian percussionist, born in Konongo, Ghana (d. 1983)
  • Feb 15 Michael "Mick" Avory, British rock drummer (The Kinks, 1964-84 - "A Rock 'n' Roll Fantasy"), born in East Molesey, Surrey
  • Feb 17 Karl Jenkins, Welsh composer (Adiemus), born in Penclawdd, Wales
  • Feb 20 Lew Soloff, American jazz trumpeter (Blood, Sweat & Tears), born in Brooklyn, New York (d. 2015)
  • Feb 23 Johnny Winter [John Dawson], American blues guitarist (Silver Train), born in Leland Miss, (d. 2014)
  • Feb 23 Mike Maxfield, British rocker (Billy J Kramer & The Dakotas)
  • Feb 24 Nicky Hopkins, British rock session pianist (Rolling Stones (1967-75); The Who - "Getting In Tune"; The Kinks - "Sunny Afternoon"; Beatles - "Revolution"; John Lennon - "Jealous Guy"; Quicksilver Messenger Service), born in Perivale, Middlesex (d. 1994)
  • Feb 27 Joyce Breach, American jazz cabaret singer, born in Alameda, California
  • Feb 28 Storm Thorgerson, British graphic designer for album art, and music video director (Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Genesis, The Cranberries), born in Potters Bar, Middlesex (d. 2013)
  • Feb 29 David Briggs, American record producer (Neil Young and Crazy Horse), born in Douglas, Wyoming (d. 1995)
  • Feb 29 Geoff Nicholls, British rock keyboardist (Black Sabbath, 1980-2013), born in Birmingham, England (d. 2017)
  • Mar 1 Mike D'Abo, British rock vocalist (Manfred Mann - "Mighty Quinn"; Jesus Christ Superstar - "Herod"), and songwriter ("Handbags and Gladrags"), born in Betchworth, Surrey, England
  • Mar 1 Roger Daltrey, English singer and founder of the rock band "The Who", born in East Acton, London, England
  • Mar 2 Leif Segerstam, Finnish violinist, conductor, and composer of 342 symphonies (...and counting!), born in Vaasa, Finland
  • Mar 4 Bobby Womack, American R&B singer, guitarist, songwriter, and producer ("It's All Over Now"; "Woman's Got to Have It"; "Across 110th Street"), born in Cleveland, Ohio (d. 2014)
  • Mar 6 Kiri Te Kanawa, New Zealand operatic soprano (Don Giovanni), born in Gisborne, New Zealand
  • Mar 6 Mary Wilson, American pop vocalist (Supremes - "Where Did Our Love Go?"), born in Detroit, Michigan (d. 2021) [1]
  • Mar 7 Townes Van Zandt, American singer-songwriter ("Kathleen"; "Loretta"), born in Fort Worth, Texas (d. 1997)
  • Mar 8 Sergey Nikitin, Russian composer
  • Mar 8 Palito Ortega, Argentine singer and actor
  • Mar 9 Trevor Burton, English guitarist and rocker (The Move), born in Aston, Birmingham
  • Mar 10 David Friedman, American jazz and session percussionist, vibraphone and marimba player (Double Image), born in New York City
  • Mar 11 Ric Rothwell, British rock drummer (Mindbenders - "The Game of Love"), born in Reddish, Cheshire, England
  • Mar 11 Graham Lyle, Scottish singer-songwriter ("What's Love Got to Do with It"), born in Bellshill, Scotland
  • Mar 11 Robert "Bobby" Lyle, American jazz pianist, born in Memphis, Tennessee
  • Mar 15 Gordon "Jazz" Summers, British music manager (Wham, Snow Patrol), born in Winchester, Hampshire (d. 2015)
  • Mar 15 David Costell, American rock bassist (Gary Lewis and The Playboys - "This Diamond Ring"), born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Mar 15 Ralph MacDonald, Trinbagonian-American jazz and R&B percussionist and songwriter ("Just the Two of Us"; "Where Is The Love"), born in Harlem, New York City (d. 2011)
  • Mar 17 John Sebastian, American singer (Loving Spoonful - "Summer In The City"; solo - "Welcome Back"), born in NYC, New York
  • Mar 17 Pat McCauley, Northern Irish rock keyboardist and drummer (Them - "Here Comes The Night") (d. 1984)
  • Mar 19 Joseph Celli, composer
  • Mar 19 Myung-Wha Chung, Korean concert cellist (Chung Trio), and educator, born in Seoul, Japanese Korea (now South Korea)
  • Mar 19 Tom Constanten, American rock keyboardist (Grateful Dead, 1968-70 - Aoxomoxoa), born in Long Branch, New Jersey
  • Mar 21 Henrik Colding-Jorgensen, composer
  • Mar 21 Jamary Oliveira, composer
  • Mar 21 David Lindley, American musician (The Kaleidoscope), born in San Marino, California
  • Mar 21 Gaye Adegbalola [Todd], American blues singer and guitarist (Sapphire, The Uppity Blues Women - "Middle Age Blues Boogie"), teacher, and activist, born in Fredericksburg, Virginia
  • Mar 22 Chris Stainton, English session and touring bass and keyboard player (Joe Cocker; The Who), born in Woodseats, England
  • Mar 23 Michael Nyman, British pianist and composer (Mesmer; Carrington; The Piano), born in Stratford, London
  • Mar 23 Ric Ocasek [Otcasek], American songwriter, guitarist, singer, and producer (The Cars - "Best Friend's Girl"; "Shake It Up"; "You Are The Girl"), born in Baltimore, Maryland (d. 2019)
  • Mar 25 Kelly Garrett, American actress and singer (The Night That Made America Famous), born in Chester, Pennsylvania (d. 2013)

Person of interestDiana Ross

Mar 26 Diana Ross [Earle], American singer (The Supremes - "Stop! In The Name Of Love"; "You Can't Hurry Love"; "I Hear A Symphony"), and actress (Lady Sings Blues; Mahogany), born in Detroit, Michigan

Singer and Actress Diana Ross
Singer and Actress
Diana Ross
  • Mar 29 Terrence "Terry" Jacks, Canadian singer-songwriter, record producer ("Seasons In The Sun"), and environmentalist, born in Winnipeg, Manitoba
  • Mar 31 Rod Allen [Bainbridge] British pop-rock singer and bassist (Fortunes - "You've Got Your Troubles"; "Here It Comes Again"), born in Leicester, England (d. 2008)
  • Mar 31 Mick Ralphs, British rock guitarist (Mott the Hoople - "All The Young Dudes"; Bad Company - "Can't Get Enough"), born in Stoke Lacy, Herefordshire, England
  • Apr 3 Barry Pritchard, British rock guitarist (Fortunes - "You've Got Your Troubles"; "Here It Comes Again"; "This Golden Ring"), born in Birmingham, England (d. 1999)
  • Apr 3 Tony Orlando [Cassavitis], American pop singer (& Dawn - "Tie A Yellow Ribbon"; "Knock Three Times"), born in NYC, New York
  • Apr 5 Nicholas Caldwell, American R&B singer (Whispers - "And The Beat Goes On"), born in Los Angeles, California (d. 2016)
  • Apr 6 Felicity Palmer, British mezzo-soprano
  • Apr 6 John Stax [Fullagar], British rock bassist, and harmonica player (Pretty Things, 1963-67 - "Don't Bring Me Down"; "Cry To Me"), born in Crayford, Kent, England
  • Apr 7 Carol Grimes, British singer (Delivery), born in London, England
  • Apr 8 Santiago Jiménez Jr, American folk and Tejano accordionist (El Mero Mero, Viva Seguin), born in Texas
  • Apr 10 Danny Woods, American musician (CEO of the Board), born in Atlanta, Georgia (d. 2018)
  • Apr 12 John Kay [Joachim Krauledat], German-born Canadian rock singer (Steppenwolf), born in Tilsit, East Prussia, Germany
  • Apr 12 Karel Kryl, Czechoslovak folk singer, born in Kroměříž, Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia (d. 1994)
  • Apr 13 Brian Pendleton, English musician (The Pretty Things, 1963-66 - "Don't Bring Me Down"), born in Durham, England (d. 2001)
  • Apr 13 Jack Casady, American rock bassist (Hot Tuna - "Hesitation Blues"; Jefferson Airplane -"Volunteers"; "White Rabbit"), born in Washington, D.C.
  • Apr 15 Dave Edmunds, Welsh rock singer and guitarist (Rockpile - "Girls Talk"; "I Knew The Bride"), born in Cardiff, Wales
  • Apr 16 Dennis Russell Davies, American conductor and composer, born in Toledo, Ohio
  • Apr 16 Mike Mitchell, American rock guitarist (The Kingsmen -"Louie, Louie"), born in Portland, Oregon (d. 2021)
  • Apr 17 John Lill, British classical pianist, born in London
  • Apr 18 Rudy Shackelford, American organist, composer, and musicologist, born in Newport News, Virginia
  • Apr 19 Bernie Worrell, American keyboardist (Funkadelic - "Cosmic Slop"), born in Long Branch, New Jersey (d. 2016)

Weddings in Music


LoveWedding of Interest

Oct 3 Comedian Jerry Lewis marries singer Patti Palmer

Comedian Jerry Lewis
Comedian
Jerry Lewis

LoveWedding of Interest

Nov 11 Blues musician B.B. King (19) marries his first wife Martha Denton

Blues Musician B.B. King
Blues Musician
B.B. King

LoveWedding of Interest

Dec 15 Country music star Hank Williams (21) weds Audrey Sheppard. It was her second marriage and his first.

Country Music Singer and Songwriter Hank Williams
Country Music Singer and Songwriter
Hank Williams

Deaths in Music

  • Jan 19 Harold Fraser-Simson, composer, dies at 71
  • Feb 1 Martin Lunssens, Belgian composer, dies at 72
  • Feb 4 Yvette Guilbert, French singer and actress, dies at 79
  • Feb 7 Lina Cavalieri, Italian soprano (b. 1874)
  • Feb 11 Ivan Sollertinski, friend of Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich, dies
  • Feb 16 Edmund von Borck, composer, dies at 37
  • Feb 16 Bob Zurke [Boguslaw Zukowski], American jazz pianist, arranger, (Bob Crosby Orchestra), and composer (Old Tom-Cat On The Keys), dies of complications of pneumonia aggravated by acute alcohol poisoning at 32
  • Feb 19 Siegfried Garibaldi Kallenberg, German composer, dies at 76
  • Mar 14 Pavel Chesnokov, Russian-Soviet composer, dies at 66
  • Mar 20 Felix Woyrsch, German composer, dies at 83
  • Apr 2 Mikulas Moyzes, Slovak composer, dies at 71
  • Apr 4 Karel Weis, Czech composer and folk song collector, dies at 82
  • Apr 5 Willy Derby [Dieben], singer (Hello Bandoeng), dies
  • Apr 9 Boleslaw Wallek-Walewski, Polish composer and conductor, dies at 59
  • Apr 13 Cecile Chaminade, French composer, dies at 86
  • Apr 13 Cécile Chamindale, French composer and pianist, dies at 86
  • Apr 22 Mezio Agostini, Italian composer, dies at 68
  • May 9 Ethel Smyth, English composer, dies at 86
  • May 16 Leone Sinigaglia, Italian composer, dies at 75
  • Jun 5 Riccardo Zandonai, Italian composer, dies at 61
  • Jun 24 Rio Gebhardt, German composer, dies at 36
  • Jun 25 Lucha Reyes, Mexican singer (b. 1906)
  • Jun 27 Werner Wehrli, composer, dies at 52
  • Jul 5 William Gillies Whittaker, English composer, dies at 67
  • Jul 19 Will Marion Cook, composer, dies at 75
  • Jul 27 Victor Jean Leonard Vreuls, composer, dies at 68
  • Aug 16 Roman Padlewski, Polish violinist and composer, dies at 28
  • Aug 19 Henry Wood, British conductor associated with London's promenade "Proms" concerts (Gentle Art of Singing, My Life of Music), dies following an illness at 75
  • Aug 23 Nikolay Andreyevich Roslavets, composer, dies at 63
  • Sep 3 František Drdla, Czech composer, dies at 75
  • Sep 7 Eduardo Sanchez de Fuentes, Cuban composer, dies at 70
  • Sep 8 Jan van Gilse, composer/Dutch resistance fighter, dies at 63
  • Sep 25 Leo Justinus Kauffmann, Alsatian composer, dies at 43
  • Sep 26 Ernst Isler, Swiss organist ad critic, dies at 64
  • Oct 16 Eric Westberg, Swedish composer, dies at 52
  • Oct 17 Pavel Haas, Czech Jewish composer, murdered at Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp at 45 (b. 1899)
  • Oct 18 Viktor Ullmann, Austrian pianist, conductor, and composer (Der Kaiser von Atlantis), murdered in gas chamber at Auschwitz at 46
  • Oct 18 Orville "Hoppy" Jones, American bass singer and cellist (The Ink Spots - "If I Didn't Care"), dies of a brain hemorrhage at 39
  • Oct 20 Gabriel Grovlez, French pianist, conductor (Opéra de Paris, 1914-34), and composer (L'Almanach aux images), dies at 65
  • Oct 30 Paul Ladmirault, French composer, dies at 66
  • Nov 12 Edgar Stillman Kelley, American composer (Gulliver), dies at 87
  • Nov 12 Roy Agnew, Australian composer (Sonata Ballade), dies at 51
  • Nov 13 Paul Graener, composer, dies at 72
  • Nov 14 Carl Flesch, Hungarian violinist, dies at 71
  • Nov 24 Václav Štěpán, Czech pianist and composer, dies at 54

Person of interestGlenn Miller

Dec 15 Glenn Miller, American bandleader and jazz composer (Glenn Miller Orchestra-In the Mood), dies in a suspected plane crash at 40

Big Band Leader and Jazz Composer Glenn Miller
Big Band Leader and Jazz Composer
Glenn Miller
  • Dec 22 Antoine Mariotte, French composer, dies on 69th birthday
  • Dec 24 Joseph Gustav Mraczek, German violinist, conductor, composer (Max und Moritz) and pedagogue, dies at 66
  • Dec 27 Amy Marcy Cheney Beach, American pianist and composer (Gaelic Symphony), dies at 77